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Arc to Arc: Zarkava Foals Sea The Stars Colt

Leading bloodstock news, on Valentine's Day no less, was that the union of two of the highest-rated horses of each sex in modern times—namely the 2008 Prix de l'Arc winner Zarkava and the 2009 winner Sea The Stars—has resulted in a colt foal, born Friday night at the Aga Khan's Haras de Bonneval in France. The colt is Zarkava's second foal as she produced a filly by another Arc winner, Dalakhani, last year. So what are we to expect of this colt?

In modern times, Arc-winning mares have rarely visited Arc-winning stallions, but there are still a couple of examples to base some thoughts around. The brilliant All Along (1983 winner) visited 1971 winner Mill Reef in her first year at stud. The resultant foal, a colt named Along All, wasn't in the same league as his sire or dam but was able to win the Prix Greffulhe (gr. II) and Prix des Chenes (gr. III) and place second in the Grand Criterium (gr. I) at two before retiring to stud in Japan where he has met with some success. All Along later visited the outstanding Dancing Brave (1986 winner) with the resultant foal being the once-raced filly All Dancing, who later died after producing just three foals. Urban Sea (1993 winner and dam of Sea The Stars) was another to visit an Arc winner, this time in the shape of the undefeated Lammtarra (1995 winner) with the resultant foal being the stakes-winning Melikah, who also placed second in the Irish Oaks (gr. I) and third in the Epsom Oaks (gr. I) before her retirement to Darley Stud.

TrueNicks reveals some interesting statistics about Zarkava's matings. Her Sea The Stars colt represents a very good B+ cross. From 132 starters by Cape Cross out of Mr. Prospector line mares, there are 10 stakes winners (more than twice the expected strike rate), including five group winners. Sea The Stars himself is a representative of this cross, and the mating returns his Mr. Prospector broodmare sire line back to him (this pattern is present in both of Zarkava's matings, as Sea The Stars and Dalakhani are out of mares by Mr. Prospector's son Miswaki). Not surprisingly, nearly all of the cross's success has come on turf (nine SW on turf, one on all-weather), and the average winning distance is 7.94 furlongs, a good bit farther than Zamindar's average as a broodmare sire. Both sire and dam were group I winners at eight, 10, and 12 furlongs, so it certainly looks a classic mating.

Click here to view the TrueNicks Enhanced report for Sea The Stars – Zarkava.

Zarkava's yearling Dalakhani filly represents a less productive cross. Darshaan and sons with Mr. Prospector line mares rates only D, as 125 starters have accounted for just two stakes winners, Dalakhani himself being one of them. Furthermore, at stud, Dalakhani has four crops of racing age but lacks a single stakes horse from the Mr. Prospector broodmare sire line. Should Zarkava be able to impart her tremendous class, this mating would seem capable of bucking the trend, and odds are that success would come at extended distances. The TrueNicks Enhanced report confirms this as a stamina-oriented mating: not only does the cross win at a healthy 9.68-furlong average, but the other stakes winner on the cross is two-mile New Zealand Cup (gr. II) winner Hoorang. Might we see this filly contending for the 2013 St. Leger (gr. I) at 14+ furlongs?

Click here to view the TrueNicks Enhanced report for Dalakhani – Zarkava.

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This is wonderful news!  Can't wait to see pics of the little fella.  Wish them all the best.  Thank you.

Love 'em all 15 Feb 2011 3:26 PM

This is my favorite time of year. I love hearing about the new foals being born to former racing stars. There is no doubt about Zarkava's greatness nor is there for Sea the Stars. The one I am interested in however, is the Dalakhani filly. He is a wonderfully accomplished beautiful stallion. I've always had a particular fondness for grey horses. Ever since my grandad took me to Sagamore to meet Native Dancer as a child.

As much as I like Dalakhani, I LOVE his half brother Daylami. I could never understand why he was sent to South Africa to stud. Please enlighten me if you know. This is a horse who won twice as much on the race track as Dalakhani, including the a Breeders Cup Turf. I know he is standing at Coolagown now in Ireland as of last season. Hopefully now that he is back in Ireland He can attract some good mares.  

Criminal Type 15 Feb 2011 6:07 PM

I think it's neat that the colt was foaled on Valentine's Day.  If it could have just a hint of the class from his parents it would be wonderful.  

The Flying Sunshine 15 Feb 2011 7:01 PM

What a racehorse that colt has the potential to be!  I will be looking forward to hearing about him in the future!

Criminal Type:  you got to meet Native Dancer!?!?!!!!! How exciting!!!!!  He is my all time favorite but I did not get to see him. I have however read and collected everything I can find on him!  WOW!! Good for you!!!  (I love the greys too!)

Racingfan 15 Feb 2011 9:26 PM

Racingfan, Yea i was like 5 or 6 but I remember it like it was yesterday..I got to see Kelso too at Laurel Park in like 66 or 67...again, I was very young, I just turned 50. My dream vacation is a trip to the stallion barns in Kentucky. My husband just doesnt get it...lol.

Criminal Type 16 Feb 2011 7:40 AM

What a wonderful Valentine!

Love & Blessings to that super special colt!

LouAnn Cingel of Union, Missouri 16 Feb 2011 10:05 AM

hope her breeding career ends better than Urban Sea

Rachel 16 Feb 2011 10:05 AM

Criminal Type:

DAYLAMI was sold to South Africa as he was considered to be a disappointment at stud: he only managed to sire three G1 winners from his first six crops.

He has now returned to Ireland but he is now standing as a National Hunt (or Jumps) stallion.  He has sired some very good National Hunt horses including G1 Triumph Hurdle winner ZAYNAR and G1 Supreme Novice Hurdle winner EBAZIYAN.

pNewmarket 16 Feb 2011 11:58 AM

Zarkava's foals are treasures. And if little Z-Stars has the SuperStar genes, what fun we'll have in a few years watching him demonstrate that pedigree.

Congratulations to The Aga Khan, and to the connections of Sea The Stars.

newsline2 16 Feb 2011 2:28 PM

Must be rather frustating for the Aga Khan/his team. With each succeeding generation ever the more difficult to bite back effectively to Mumtaz Mahal/Lady Josephine. Zarkava decends-tail female to Mumtaz Mahal with the great Petite Etoile as a close conduit. Petite Etoile had very few offspring, but they've managed to keep this great branch (of Mumtaz Mahal) alive by carefully adding (here and there) more Mumtaz Mahal/Lady Josephine. Both Dalakhani and Sea The Stars offer some, but too bad there aren't today more top sires with a load of combos Gallant Man/Mahmoud/*Nasrullah/Royal Charger, etc. to aid their likely cause. Danzig's Petition helps a bit, but it seems that their only real access is to double up on Mill Reef/or Never Bend over there. Using more Blushing Groom they may find a bit too risky-and I've noticed very poor results from straight inbreeding/linebreeding to Red God. What a shame- If I had Zarkava it would drive me crazy. Much of their success and reputation they owe to Mumtaz Mahal. So difficult the attempt to preserve/perpetuate her better (perhaps, unique) genes as time and generations move on.    

sceptre 16 Feb 2011 10:24 PM

Considering Sea The Stars' dam, Urban Sea also won the Prix de l'Arc, there is a lot of power in this foal who may hold great promise.  Happy Valentine's Day and Birthday to a future star.  Please keep us updated on his progress.  Isn't the dam of Zarkava, Zarkasha also bearing a foal by STS?

Slew 17 Feb 2011 8:49 AM

Slew, you are right that ZARKASHA was covered by Sea the Stars.

I posted a full list of the mares covered by Sea the Stars on another racing forum.  You can read the list here:


To summarise, his book contained:

21 G1 winners

10 G1 placed mares

2 G2 winners

7 G3 winners

39 dams of G1 winners

10 dams of G1 placed horses

24 half-sisters to G1 winners

pNewmarket 17 Feb 2011 12:13 PM

CURLIN and Rachel Alexandra having Valentine's date! Let's see what comes from that! Interesting to anticipate! I'm sure connections expect a superhorse! Let's see! you never know! But I am sure it was a nice Valentine's date! :-) I'm hoping for the next triple crown winner! But who isn't with any foal right now! It's time!


CURLINLOVER 17 Feb 2011 12:40 PM

Even though it is rated a D, I still think the distance breeding is intruiging for the filly.  Let's hope both of these foals do well!

Footlick 17 Feb 2011 11:27 PM

The first two foals of Zarkava have been by fellow Arc winners Dalakhani and Sea The Stars and if they make it to the racetrack their racing careers will intertwine. We do not know if they will go on to win anything of importance but it is the right thing to do even though the breeding of Arc wimmers so far have not produced good results.

John T 18 Feb 2011 12:06 AM

Is Galileo the next stallion for Zarkava Or may be Oasis Dream?

havresac 24 Feb 2011 3:40 PM

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