Sooboog And Thronum Give Snitzel A Stakes Double
At Flemington the sometimes disappointing four-year-old stallion Sooboog (Snitzel) put it together for trainer Darren Weir to win the Aurie’s Star Handicap (Gr 3, 1200m) in good style in 1:10.06, covering the last 600 metres in 33.82.
Elsewhere, on a heavy track at Randwick, three-year-old colt Thronum (Snitzel) showed an abundance of speed and courage to narrowly defeat Mediterranean (Smart Missile) in The Rosebud (Listed, 1200m).
Victory for Sooboog and Thronum lifted the tally of stakes winners by their sire to 40 from seven crops of racing age.
Snitzel was officially eighth in a bunched field on the Australian general sires’ list for last season but finished as high as second back in 2013/14 behind his sire Redoute’s Choice (Danehill). Last season he was second behind Written Tycoon (Iglesia) on the Australian two-year-olds sires table with a near record total of 29 individual winners in Australia. If the best of these train on at three this season they will do much to elevate their father on the general sires’ list for 2016-17 backed up by another big crop of superbly bred juveniles.
Purchased by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum as a yearling in Sydney for $1,500,000 at the Inglis Australian Easter Sale in 2014, Sooboog showed great ability early on but suffered a few significant setbacks when a member of the Hawkes stable.
Before Saturday, he had three stakes placings to his credit, with his Aurie’s Star victory boosting his career earnings to $271,375, still way short of his initial cost but another stakes win or two, given Sooboog’s pedigree, will make him a valuable stud prospect.
Sooboog is a brother to former top two-year-old and sprinter, Snitzerland (Snitzel), the winner of six stakes races and eight races overall up to 1200 metres for earnings of $1,974,500. A Group Three winner and runner up to champion Pierro (Lonhro) in the 2012 Golden Slipper Stakes (Gr 1, 1200m) at two, Snitzerland went on to win five more times at Group level, including the 2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (Gr 1, 1000m).
Their unraced dam Monte Rosa (Fraar), a sister to stakes winner Nina Haraka (Fraar), has been an excellent producer, as all seven of her foals to race are winners, another being stakes-placed Red Dress Marley (Hussonet). To come, Monte Rosa has a Snitzel yearling filly and she was covered by him again last November.
Nina Haraka and another of Monte Rosa’s half-sisters, Tennessee Royal (Royal Academy), have also produced stakes winners.
Tracing back to Melbourne Cup (Gr 1, 3200m) winner Rainbird (The Buzzard) through stakes winner Misty Vain (Vain), Sooboog comes from a family which has achieved much success over the past 30 years through such major winners as Malaguerra (Magnus), Aloha (Encosta De Lago), Trezevant (Flying Spur) and a host of others.
Like Sooboog, Thronum has a powerful female line in his background, a factor partly accounting for his $300,000 price when breeder Highgrove Stud, Queensland, offered the son of Snitzel at the 2015 Australian Easter Yearling Sale.
Owned by Sun Bloodstock Pty Ltd and Sun Stud, Thronum is also an exciting stallion prospect as his third dam, Irish Oaks (Gr 1, 1m4f) winner Helen Street (Troy), produced last season’s champion Australian sire Street Cry (Machiavellian), sire of 105 stakes winners, and is the grandam of Shamardal (Giant’s Causeway), sire of 99 stakes winners.
Thronum’s dam Helena’s Secret (Five Star Day) won over six furlongs as a two-year-old in Canada and her only other foal to race, All Too Many (Eskendereya), is a winner in the United States. The mare’s third foal, a filly by Sebring (More Than Ready), was born in 2015 and she returned to Widden Stud’s Sebring again last September.
Five Star Day (Carson City), sire of Thronum’s dam, is a name not familiar to most breeders in this part of the world. He was a high class sprinter in the United States, a four-time stakes winner whose victories included the A G Vanderbilt Handicap (Gr 2, 6f) at Saratoga and the Phoenix Stakes (Gr 3, 6f) at Keeneland.
From the male line of Mr Prospector (Raise A Native), Five Star Day has proved a very useful sire in the United States with 26 stakes winners, among them Grade Two winners Eternal Star and Dance Daily, to his credit and a high percentage of winners-to-runners.