Cape Blanco is First Major Galileo Stallion in U.S.

Five-time group/grade I winner Cape Blanco (IRE) (TrueNicks) has retired to Ashford Stud near Versailles, Ky., for the 2012 season. He becomes the first major son of Irish and English leading sire Galileo to stand in the United States. Cape Blanco is now available on TrueNicks, where breeders can run unlimited hypothetical mating reports.

Undefeated in three starts at 2, Cape Blanco stamped himself as classics contender when capturing the Tyros (gr. III) and Futurity Stakes (gr. II), both at seven furlongs. A winner in the Dante (gr. II) on his 3-year-old debut, Cape Blanco later won the Irish Derby and Irish Champion Stakes (both gr. I).

At 4, Cape Blanco raided the North American turf division, shipping in to take three consecutive grade I races: the Man o'War, Arlington Million, and Turf Classic (videos below). He retired with earnings of $3.8 million and eight group or grade I wins ranging from seven to 12 furlongs.

With top Galileo sons Teofilo, New Approach, Rip Van Winkle, and Soldier of Fortune already at stud in Europe, Cape Blanco offers this sire line to American breeders for the first time.

Cape Blanco's dam side is rather intriguing. His dam, the Presidium mare Laurel Delight, made 24 of her 25 starts at five furlongs, and she is a half sister to another five-furlong specialist in group II winner Paris House, who made 20 of his 21 starts at five furlongs. Bred to miler Mukaddamah, Laurel Delight produced Mr O'Brien, a grade II winner at eight and nine furlongs. Bred to Galileo, who can provide ample stamina, she produced Cape Blanco. Surely Laurel Delight imparts a strong measure of class to her foals, but it is interesting how much the sires seem to have influenced the aptitudes of her two best progeny. Laurel Delight was named Ireland's broodmare of the year in 2010.

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