Westbury Stud Now on TrueNicks

In the near 20 years since its inception, Westbury Stud has risen to a place of prominence among New Zealand’s Thoroughbred nurseries. At its Karaka property, it stands seven stallions, drawn from a diverse range of backgrounds.

Postponed (TrueNicks) is a U.S. graded stakes winner by Summer Squall – classic siring son of Storm Bird – and from the immediate family of Storm Bird’s breed-shaping stallion son Storm Cat and the outstanding international sire Royal Academy. Quick to make his mark at stud in New Zealand, Postponed is best-known as the sire of the New Zealand 1,000 Guineas (gr. I) and WRC Captain Cook Stakes (gr. I) heroine Dorabella; of Pasta Post, whose trio of group wins include the ARC Easter Handicap (gr. I); and group II and III winner Naturo.

Another proven sire at Westbury is Captain Rio (GB) (TrueNicks). An eight length winner of the Criterium de Maisons-Laffitte (gr. II), he was rated Champion in England at 2, and in Ireland at 3. A son of stallion sensation Pivotal, Captian Rio is out of the Miswaki mare Beloved Visitor. With three crops of Southern Hemisphere runners, Captain Rio has made his name through such as grade I winners Brazilian Pulse, successful in the VRC Oaks (gr. I) and VRC Wakeful Stakes (gr. I); Manawatu Sire’s Produce Stakes (gr. I) scorer Il Quello Veloce; group winner Riomoral; and black type scorers Rio Fortune and Alegrio.

There are very few stallion sons of the mighty Mr. Prospector still available, but Westbury has a very successful one in the shape of Faltaat (TrueNicks). Out of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) heroine Epitome, Faltaat was the Champion Older Sprinter in the UAE. He’s become a prolific sire of class, his 17 stakes winners, including the group I scorers Tit For Taat (New Zealand 2,000 Guineas (gr. I), Waikato Draught Sprint (gr. I), Bayer Classic (gr. I), Captain Cook Stakes (gr. I) and Telegraph Handicap (gr. I)); Taatletail, who took the New Zealand 1,000 Guineas (gr. I); Sedecrem, successful in the Easter Handicap (gr. I) and Waikato Draught Sprint; the Captain Cook Stakes (gr. I) victor Jurys Out; Miss Raggedy Ann, who took the ARC Railway Stakes (gr. I); and Hong Kong Champion Mile (gr. I) laureate Sight Winner.

The Mr. Prospector line is also represented at Westbury by sprint star Swiss Ace (AUS) (TrueNicks). This very consistent speedster won 12 of his 20 starters, including the Oakleigh Plate (gr. I), back-to-back renewals of the Sir Byrne Hart Stakes (gr. II), and the listed Chief de Beers Handicap and Westwood Handicap. Swiss Ace is by the Doncaster Handicap (gr. I) winner Secret Savings (by Seeking the Gold, one of Mr. Prospector’s most important sons). His dam is by another Mr. Prospector horse, Carson City, an outstanding influence for speed and precocity. Swiss Ace’s granddam, the Northern Dancer mare Tennis Partner, is a sister to sprint champion and group I sire Ajdal; half sister to grade I winner Flying Partner; and half sister to English 2-year-old group I winner and successful sire Formidable. Tennis Partner is also three-parts-sister to Danseur Fabuleux, dam of world Champion 2-Year-Old Arazi, group I winner and classic sire Noverre, and to Bev Bev, the third dam of good young U.S. sire Exchange Rate. Swiss Ace will stand his second season at stud in 2011.

We’ve mentioned Postponed’s connection to the mighty Storm Cat, and Westbury also has a grandson of Storm Cat in the shape of Red Giant (TrueNicks,SRO). A turf ace at distances from a mile to 10 furlongs (1600-2000m), Red Giant set a new world record for 10 furlongs on turf, running that distance in 1:57.16 to capture the Clement L. Hirsch Memorial Turf Championship (gr. I), one of his three graded stakes triumps. Red Giant is by Storm Cat’s best racing and stallion son, Giant’s Causeway, the Leading Sire in the U.S. in 2009 and 2010. Out of the stakes-placed Kingmambo mare Beyond the Sun, he is half brother to graded winner Womia and stakes winner Carnera. The granddam, stakes winner Carnet Solaire, is out of classic-placed Konafa, dam of Champions Keos and Proskona; granddam of champions and classic winners Hector Protector and Bosra Sham, and classic winner Shanghai; and third dam of multiple group/grade I winner Ciro.

An accomplished son of Danzig with a top-class pedigree, Librettist (TrueNicks) made a bright start with his first European-sired 2-year-olds last year. Winner of two of his three starts at 2, Librettist was sidelined by injury at 3 but returned to take a trio of group races at four, including two of Europe’s most prestigious mile contests, the Prix Jacques le Marois (gr. I) and Prix du Moulin de Longchamp (gr. I). Librettist is half brother to group I winner and group I sire Dubai Destination. His dam, Mysterial, is half sister to Danzig’s son Agnes World, successful in the Prix de l’Abbaye de Longchamp (gr. I) and July Cup (gr. I), and a group I sire, and to Champion Japanese sprinter/miler Hishi Akebono. As we’ve said, Librettist was represented by his first Northern Hemisphere-sired 2-year-old runners in 2010 and was sire of 14 2-year-old winners, including the July Stakes (gr. II) victor Libranno. He covered his first Southern Hemisphere season in 2008 (in Australia), and served for the first time in New Zealand in 2009.

The Westbury Stud line-up is completed by Cecconi (AUS) (TrueNicks), a stakes-winning son of the dominant sire Encosta de Lago. A $A460,000 yearling, the precocious Cecconi captured the Blue Diamond Preview, ran second in the STC Pago Pago Stakes (gr. II), and third in the Bill Stutt Stakes (gr. II). By the sire of such as Racing to Win, Alinghi, Manhattan Rain, Northern Meteor, Sacred Kingdom, Lashed, and Mnemosyne, Cecconi is out of the speedy dual stakes-winning and group-placed stakes winner Tonicity (a sister to graded winner Bodacious Babe). The granddam, graded-placed Bravado Wonder, is half sister to stakes winner Brave New World, the granddam of Golden Slipper (gr. I) winner and Champion First Season Sire Stratum.

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