Vinery Stud have proven very successful at pioneering the success of new sirelines in Australia with Red Ransom (USA) bringing Roberto to our shores and More Than Ready (USA) giving us Halo through Southern Halo report from Breednet.
Vinery’s prowess in this regard sure to generate huge interest at the yearling sales next year in the progeny of their latest experiment.
AP Indy stallion Congrats (USA) won over Australian broodmare owners from the first time they saw him in spring 2011 and Vinery are confident his offspring will do the exact same thing with yearling buyers come January.
A powerhouse of a stallion, standing 16.1 hands, Congrats is a physically imposing individual that has delivered strength and muscle bulk to his progeny as well as the athleticism that has seen his North American runners excel at the highest level.
The Champion US Freshman Sire of 2010, Congrats has achieved his success the hard way given limited opportunities from his humble beginnings in Florida.
A million dollar earner that competed successfully from ages two to six, Congrats scored a career best win in the Group II Santa Anita San Pasqual Handicap and was second in the Group I Santa Anita Handicap.
A tough and sound competitor, Congrats had a chequered start to his stud career in Florida standing first at Cloverleaf Farm in 2007 at a fee of $12,500, before moving to Journeyman in 2008 and then to Vinery Florida where he stood for his third and fourth seasons in 2009 and 2010.
That first crop of modestly bred foals are what delivered Congrats his title as Champion US Freshman Sire in a very competitive generation of sires that also included Bernardini and War Front.
He had 25 winners in that first crop that hit the ground in 2010 including three stakes-winners headed by Group I winners Turbulent Descent and Wickedly Perfect.
Such explosive success sparked an immediate shift for Congrats to Vinery Kentucky in 2011 where he covered 205 mares to be the busiest sire in North America and this year he stood at WinStar at a fee of $35,000 following the closure and subsequent sale of Vinery Kentucky.
The second crop for Congrats yielded another Group I winner in Emma’s Encore and the stakes-winners have continued to come, albeit still from his earlier books of lesser quality mares.
Congrats has sired 14 stakes-winners in total, giving him 6.3% stakes-winners to runners and nearly 70% winners to runners, statistics that mark him as a prolific source of quality winners.
With his first big crop of better bred two year-olds set to hit US tracks next year, Congrats is poised for an upswing in the Northern Hemisphere as his first progeny come online down here.
Congrats was extremely well supported covering some 290 mares in his first two seasons in Australia at a fee of $22,000 and bookings this year would indicate breeders have been more than happy with the results.
“We are very diligent about the stallions we bring out from the USA and have been fortunate enough to bring out the likes of More Than Ready and Red Ransom that have both been success stories here,” said Vinery’s Adam White.
“When we started to look through what Congrats offered with his race record, his pedigree and what his progeny were doing we recognized that he fit perfectly for what is needed to do well in this part of the world.
“His first crop resulted in 25 two-year-old winners including two Group I winners which is ideal for Australia, where we are frequently looking for the early types. But the fact they have trained on well got us even more excited about him. From that first crop of 114 live foals 91 raced and 81 won, a winners to runners of an unheard of 89%.
“Not only did he have incredible stats but he was getting top line horses, Turbulent Descent was a Group 1 winner at 2, 3 and 4 years of age.
“His stock are strong athletic types with great bone. He’s a serious prospect for our shores.”
The first of the Congrats yearlings will be on show at the Magic Millions flagship event on the Gold Coast where 28 have been accepted for Sessions One to Five.