Sunday, January 24, 2016

Europe's Champion Second-Crop Sire Siyouni

A Group 1 winner at 2 years of age and multiple Group 1 placed at 3, Siyouni (Pivotal) retired at the end of 2010 to the Aga Khan’s Haras de Bonneval for €7,000 (approx. $7,571US/£5,277).

His first crop came out running in 2014 with 12 of his 2-year-olds winning at least one race, according to Racing Post. That group was led by 2-year-old Group 3 winners Ervedya, Souvenir Delondres and Bourree who would go on to make an even bigger impact on their sire's resume in 2015.

Video courtesy of France Sire

When Siyouni’s 93 horses of racing age hit the track last year, they built on his first year success with 45 winners giving him a 48.39 percent win rate. By the end of the year, he had 75 wins with five stakes winners and nine stakes wins to lead all European Second-Crop sires by earnings on Racing Post’s rankings with £1,737,065 (approx. $2,493,035US/€2,304,105).

His group 3 winning 2-year-old Ervedya bettered that result in 2015 when she went four-for-five in her starts, winning three Group 1 events and finishing second in one other. Those wins included a victory in the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Pouliches (France’s version of the 1,000 Guineas) before shipping to England for the first time to win the Group 1 Coronation Cup during Royal Ascot’s meet.

Ervedya led Siyouni’s five stakes winners for the year with Bourree adding to his group stakes count and undefeated (now) 3-year-old filly Trixia joining the stakes count with a Group 3 win to end the year. In all, Siyouni’s five stakes winners ranked him second in the standings by stakes winners behind Lope de Vega (Shamardal) but first in the number of stakes wins those horses gave him.


Courtesy of Racing Post
Looking at his pedigree, it isn’t a surprise that Siyouni is making a good go of it at stud with early starters.

His sire Pivotal (Polar Falcon) won two sprint races at two and stepped up to group stakes competition in his 3-year-old debut at Royal Ascot. The stallion won the Group 2 King’s Stand Stakes and two starts later took home the Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes in his career finale.

Since his first crop hit the track in 2000, Pivotal has sired 124 stakes winners with 69 of those winning group stakes. That count includes 25 Group 1 winners including multiple group 1 winners African Story, Farhh, Golden Apples, Halfway to Heaven, Immortal Verse, Izzi Top, Megahertz, Peeress, Regal Parade, Sariska and Somunus.

Siyouni’s dam Sichilla (Danehill) was a stakes winner herself and is on her way to making her mark as a broodmare. Siyouni was the mare’s first foal and he was followed by multiple Group/Graded stakes winner Siyouma (Medicean). Siyouma won races at the highest level on both sides of the ocean, taking home the Group 1 Kingdom of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket before shipping to Woodbine to win the Grade 1 E.P. Taylor Stakes.

The next foal out of Sichilla was the Azamour mare Siyenica, who won a listed stakes a 3 years of age and placed in two group stakes that same year. Sichilla has a 4-year-old winning filly by Galileo, and an unraced 2-year-old colt named Sikandari (Sea the Stars).
Siyouni’s second dam, stakes placed Slipstream Queen (Conquistador Cielo), is also the dam of Europe’s 2001 champion older mile and Italy’s champion older horse Slickly (Linamix) in addition to Grade 2 winner No Slip (Exit to Nowhere) and three stakes placed horses.

His third dam is 1979 Grade 1 Yellow Ribbon Invitational winner Country Queen (Explodent) who won six graded stakes in her career. That mare produced the stakes winner River Char (Riverman) in addition to three other stakes placed horses. One more generation back, Country Queen’s dam Carrie’s Rough (Rough’n Tumble) also produced the mare With Distinction (Distinctive) who is the dam of the Mr. Prospector stallion multiple Group/Grade 1 winner Procida. Overall, there are 16 stakes winners from branches other than Country Queen’s family listed under Carrie’s Rough on Weatherbys.

The combination of Siyouni’s talent on the track, his bloodlines and the success of his first runners caught the eye of breeders over the last few months and when three shares to the stallion were offered in Arqanaonline.com auctions they were snapped up. The first two sold to Hesmonds Stud and Merriebelle Stable for €355,000 (approx. $384,323US/£268,145) each but it was the third share that put Siyoni in the record books.

Fourteen bidders were at their computers in early January to try and secure the third share in the auction. Six of those bidders were involved during the “extra time” period, which had the auction closing 45 minutes after its original planned time. When all was said and done, Mick Flanagan won the 1/50th share in the stallion for China Horse Club by bidding a record-breaking €360,000 (approx. $389,736US/£271,922).

"He's a young upcoming sire and when you consider that his most expensive yearling sold for 320,000gns last year, I'm comfortable with the price [of the share],” Flanagan told Racing Post. "There is every reason to think he will keep going the right way and this investment will prove money well spent. The China Horse Club owns a select group of mares, some of which are actually on their way to France at the moment. The Club has expressed a strong commitment to the French racing and breeding industry via its purchases at Arqana and the horses that are in training in Chantilly."

The move to secure the share for that price seemed to have been a smart one with Siyouni’s fee rising to €30,000 (approx. $32,430US/£22,660) in 2016 after going from €7,000 (approx. $7,571US/£5,277) to €20,000 (approx. $21,620US/£15,105) in 2015. 

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