Vinery’s proven trio of More Than Ready, Testa Rossa and Mossman have manned up to keep the stud in the spotlight while the younger brigade are waiting in the wings.
More Than Ready’s latest star Verrazano is one of 13 Group 1 winners for the Vinery champion. He captured the G1 Wood Memorial in April and doubled up with a devastating 9 1/2L romp in the U.S$1,000,000 Haskell Invitational G.1 on Sunday.
Trainer Todd Pletcher has always believed in Verrazano having prepared More Than Ready to 6 black-type victories up to Group 1 level. “I couldn’t be more thrilled by what he did in the Haskell,” he said. “It was the most impressive performance by any three year-old this year.”
Pletcher isn’t looking any further ahead than the G1 Travers Stakes at Saratoga on August 24. But a G1 Breeders’ Cup Classic assignment against Wise Dan at Santa Anita in November would be a showdown for USA Horse of the Year.
Closer to home, More Than Ready fillies Watabout (Randwick) and Sugar Rush (Newcastle) maintained his two year-old momentum on Saturday. They represent the potent More Than Ready –Danehill cross that produced 2013 classic winning fillies More Than Sacred (New Zealand Oaks) and Moreish (WA Oaks).
Testa Rossa also enjoyed a remarkable season in the juvenile division with standout filly Twilight Royale winning the G2 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes on top of two lucrative Inglis Bonus victories.
Trainer Bjorn Baker is setting Twilight Royale for the G1 $1 million Golden Rose (1400m) on September 14. Another huge $2.40 million pay-day awaits the filly if she can sweep the Inglis Triple Crown in the LR Scone Guineas next May.
“I think she is a Group 1 filly and she has a big spring ahead so we can’t worry about what might be in the autumn,” Baker said. “We have paid up for the Golden Rose and she is also entered for the Princess Series.”
Testa Rossa has sired 10 individual 2yo winners this season. Apart from Twilight Royale, his 2yo colts The Bowler (Flemington) and Weregoingtogetcha (NZ) have also earned black-type.
Macau based colt Good Master is another promising two year-old by Testa Rossa. The Gary Moore trained youngster won by 5 lengths second time out on July 12.
Testa Rossa has an amazing overall winning strike-rate of 73% and, at a $27,500 (inc gst) service fee, is arguably the best value-for-money sire in the Hunter Valley.
Not to be outdone, Mossman is gunning for a Group 1 double of his own with Second Effort and Buffering.
Second Effort captured his third stakes win this season in the G3 Bletchingly Stakes at Caulfield on Saturday. He had won the G2 Lawrence Stakes at Caulfield in August and the LR Wangoom Hcp at Warrnambool in May.
Trainer Clinton McDonald has Group 1 designs on the Memsie Stakes back at Caulfield on August 13.
Buffering is also on track for an overdue Group 1 and Brisbane trainer Rob Heathcote is targeting the G1 Moir Stakes on Grand Final eve, September 27. He won the Moonee Valley feature when it was a G2 sprint back in 2012.
Heathcote produced another promising two year-old by Mossman when Neuschwanstein scored at Eagle Farm last week. “He’s got the makings of a nice horse,” he said. “He’s still doing at lot wrong and I’m sure the penny will drop next time in.”
Mossman has sired 7 juvenile winners this season headed by Sydney G2 performer Dothraki. He will stand for a $19,800 (inc gst) service fee at Vinery.
Champion colt All Too Hard along with Casino Prince and Husson add another dimension to the Vinery line-up this year joining 10 other stallions on one of the Hunter Valley’s biggest rosters.