Yarradale Stud Manager Davy Hanratty is confident this year’s consignment of 24 yearlings to the Perth Magic Millions is the best since he arrived at Gidgegannup in 2011.
The Irish-born horseman has helped prep drafts that have topped turnover four times in the last decade and he’s on safe ground this time around with 7 yearlings by Playing God heading down Darling Scarp to the Swan Valley.
Yarradale resident War Chant (USA) has three colts and filly amid numerous Eastern States yearlings by Brazen Beau, Toronado (Ire), So You Think (NZ), Flying Artie and Darley Victoria first-season sire Earthlight (Ire).
The Brazen Beau – Burgoyne colt (Lot 26) is a standout and can set the tone in the first hour of trade next Thursday, February 22. His dam is a War Chant mare who was a Belmont 2yo winner for Dan Morton. “He wouldn’t be out of place in any sale around Australia,” Hanratty claimed. “He’s a stunning physical and just oozes quality.”
Brazen Beau (I Am Invincible) also stands at Darley Victoria and Bold Bastille heads his 2yo division this season winning the RL Inglis Banner (1000m) at Moonee Valley. His WA youngster Brazen Bid won at Pinjarra on debut last month for trainer Stephen Miller and part-owner Rod Russell.
The Playing God connection came about when Yarradale owner Ron Sayers bought a quarter-share in the champion sire not long into his stud career back in 2020. “It was an astute investment,” Hanratty said. “Now he’s the horse everyone is talking about over here.”
Sayers passed away in May 2022 and Hanratty was later promoted to Stud Manager as part of a business development initiative guided by Ron’s wife Lyn Sayers.
“Ron loved Yarradale and didn’t like selling fillies from his favourite families,” Hanratty recalled fondly on Monday. “His first Karrakatta Plate winner was Born Priceless over 20 years ago and I think we had over 20 of her descendants and close relations here at one stage.
Lyn Sayers and the Yarradale team with a definitive photo of Ron on the farm
“Lyn loves it here, too and is committed to keeping the Yarradale brand thriving. We’re pumping out lots of winners and it’s exciting having these Playing God yearlings in the pipeline.”
The Playing God – Lado Ciego filly (Lot 274) can receive a late update with close relation Stormchaser (Impending) in the RL Magic Millions 3YO Trophy (1200m) at Pinjarra this Saturday. “She’s a big, strong, sound girl with lots of bone. We kept a share in Stormchaser after selling him to Luke Fernie for $50,000 at the Magic Millions two years ago.”
The Earthlight – Chantski filly (Lot 35) is a half-sister to Stormchaser and last month’s Belmont winner Final Authority (Zoustar). “She’s out of a War Chant mare and is a very sharp filly from an active family.”
War Chant (Danzig) is the damsire of over 500 individual winners and among them are Arrowfield Stud’s Group 1 stallion Shalaa (Invincible Spirit) and 2019 Kentucky Derby winner Country House (Lookin At Lucky).
“War Chant shuttled here for four years before Ron bought him outright and I went back and forth with him to Sydney for the flights to and from Kentucky,” Hanratty remembered. “He’s 27 years young and is leaving a wonderful legacy.”
The Pierro colt from Dainty Tess (Lot 44) is the first foal from a War Chant mare who earned over $1 million following Group 3 sprints wins in Perth and Adelaide. “He’s a cracking first foal out of a fast mare with a lovely swinging walk. He’s been popular during our farm inspections and will go early.”
The Toronado (Ire) filly from Not a Single Doubt mare Single Spice (Lot 160) has a pedigree to match as a half-sister to G2 Karrakatta Plate (1200) winner Ima Single Man (Gingerbread Man) who is nowadays plying a profitable trade in Hong Kong.
Yarradale topped the 2023 Perth Magic Millions when the Blue Point (Ire) filly from Single Spice (Ire) made $350,000 to the bid of agent Suman Hedge and Williams Racing. “That filly has a lovely action and she was our star last year. She’s been named Blue Pepper and Grant & Alana say she’s well-above average.”
This article was first published on Breednet