Caption: Scissor Kick (Redoute’s Choice-Back Pass (USA) by Quest for Fame (GB))
Any kind of one hundred per cent success in the stallion business is rare. Very rare. So it’s worth paying attention when one stud stands a three-generation sequence of stallions that all make the grade. As the saying goes, one may be chance, two a co-incidence, but three is most definitely a pattern.
That puts big ticks beside the three young sons of Redoute’s Choice that Arrowfield now chooses to stand: Scissor Kick, Panzer Division and future stallion Pariah.
“Making the grade” doesn’t come close to describing the Stud’s unbroken run of spectacular success with the Danehill stallion dynasty.
Arrowfield’s hunt for the son of Danzig most likely to work in Australia is now legend. It was driven partly by the vision of an alternative to the then-dominant Star Kingdom line, partly by intensive research, and partly by the stallion-maker’s instinct that made John Messara decide to buy Danehill the minute the horse walked out of his box.
Many wondered why Messara chose Danehill over, for instance, a top colt by Marscay and it was a struggle to get 72 mares for his first book in 1990. Golden Slipper winners Danzero and Flying Spur silenced the doubters and, recognising Danehill’s breed-shaping potential, Arrowfield moved quickly to secure the two colts for stud duties.
They soon added “sire of sires” to Danehill’s CV but that wasn’t enough for Arrowfield. When Redoute’s Choice won the Blue Diamond a week after his debut, John Messara paid attention. After the gorgeous colt became the warrior prince in the unforgettable 1999 Caulfield Guineas, Arrowfield negotiated with owner-breeder Muzaffar Yaseen to buy into him.
Again, doubts were expressed about the wisdom of three Danehill sons on the same roster. They vanished when Redoute’s Choice won the first of his three Australian stallion premierships in 2006, and Flying Spur collected the 2007 title.
Convinced that Redoute’s Choice would also make a sire of sires, Messara added brilliant home-bred Not A Single Doubt to the roster in 2005, and Group 1-winning sprinter Snitzel in 2006. Neither is made in their sire’s imposing mould and both had slow burn starts to their stud careers, with the aptly named Not A Single Doubt taking 708 days to leave his first stakeswinner.
Yet again, racetrack results, specifically more than 100 stakeswinners including 17 Group 1 winners between them, have delivered the final judgement. Not A Single Doubt was Australia’s leading active sire in 2015/16 and Snitzel is setting records everywhere this season as he seeks his first General Sires’ premiership.
Beneteau, another home-bred son of Redoute’s Choice who joined the Arrowfield roster in 2011, would surely be hitting top gear this season as well, but for his premature death in January 2013, leaving 136 foals behind him. As it is, he’s sired 10 stakeswinners and 11 other stakes performers from 98 runners, including last Spring’s VRC Oaks G1 winner Lasqueti Spirit.
It was after Beneteau’s death that the Arrowfield team set out to find and develop the next prospective sire sons of Redoute’s Choice.
Scissor Kick and Panzer Division were both Inglis Easter graduates bought and trained by Paul Messara to win at two before progressing to Group 3 sprinting success in Sydney as early Spring three-year-olds.
Like Not A Single Doubt and Beneteau, Scissor Kick had Group 1 class without Group 1 luck. Following his Listed and Group 3 wins, he was beaten a whisker by Hallowed Crown after a heroic run in the 2014 ATC Golden Rose G1, and later missed the ATC Randwick Guineas G1 because of a virus.
What-might-have-been was only confirmed by Scissor Kick’s sparkling victory in the 1200-metre ATC Eskimo Prince S. G3 before an outstanding fourth behind Horse of the Year Dissident, Wandjina and Champion Sprinter Chautauqua in the ATC All Aged S. G1.
Panzer Division defeated Shooting To Win in the ATC Ming Dynasty H. G3 and then ran an excellent fifth in Sacred Falls’ ATC George Main S. G1. That was enough to earn him a 120 Timeform rating before injury ended his racing career and he joined Scissor Kick on Arrowfield’s stallion line-up in 2016.
The Redoute’s Choice factor, and Scissor Kick’s powerful European family have attracted the interest of French stud Haras d’Etreham where he is now completing his first northern hemisphere book.
Perhaps the closest match for Beneteau is this season’s top-class juvenile Pariah, a Group 3 winner on debut and runner-up in the MRC Blue Diamond S. G1. Bred and sold by Arrowfield to James Harron Bloodstock, he remains in training with a major Spring three-year-old campaign ahead of him and a slot already booked on the Arrowfield roster.
Arrowfield’s six chosen sons of Redoute’s Choice have something else in common too. They all come from strong female families, with dominant broodmares and quality racemares prominent in their pedigrees.
Not A Single Doubt is a grandson of influential matriarch Easy Date, Snitzel’s dam was a dual stakeswinner and Beneteau was out of a sister to Champion 3YO Filly Alinghi.
Scissor Kick is descended from a half-sister to the great broodmare Hasili and is closely related to champion sire Dansili. Panzer Division, out of dual Group 1 winner Desert Fight, and Pariah, a three-quarter brother to Group 1 winner Melito, are both bred on the electric Redoute’s Choice/Hussonet cross.
Published: June 2017