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Golden Rose success a genetic destiny for Jacquinot

You don’t have to dig too far into the pedigree of Saturday’s G1 Golden Rose Stakes winner Jacquinot to see why that victory means so much to the value of the impeccably bred colt.

A race which has become one of Australia’s key stallion makers has unearthed yet another gem, a colt primed not only to build on his reputation as an elite racehorse, but who will also be firmly on the radar of Australia’s top studs.

No fewer than seven previous Australian Champion Sires feature somewhere in the first five generations of Jacquinot’s pedigree, but it is the presence of two in particular which set him up so well as a stallion prospect.

Encosta De Lago and Redoute’s Choice, whose on-track reputations were forged in the fire of elite racing in the late 1990s and early 2000s, have made indelible marks on the Australian thoroughbred landscapes as stallions.

Champion sires whose breeding careers ran largely in parallel, they finished one-two in the Sires’ title on three occasions, in 2005/06 when Redoute’s Choice claimed the first of his three titles, in 2008/09, when Encosta De Lago won the first of his two, and again in 2009/10 when Redoute’s Choice won out. Such was the rivalry, there were eight individual seasons where they were adjacent to each other in the sire rankings.

While both are no longer with us – they died within five months of each other in 2018/19 – they continued to have significant influence as broodmare sires, finishing top two in that category, by both prize money and winners, in each of the past five Australian racing seasons.

When it comes to their own sons as sires, Redoute’s Choice has excelled, producing four-time Australian champion Snitzel as well as highly influential Not A Single Doubt, as his successful heirs at Arrowfield.

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Redoute's Choice winning the 1999 Caulfield Guineas. (Photo: Robert Cianflone/Allsport)

Dual Australian Champion sire Encosta De Lago. (Photo: Coolmore)

A direct heir to Encosta De Lago’s male legacy has been less clear cut. Northern Meteor loomed as a generational stallion at Widden but died on the day he was crowned champion first-season sire having produced just four crops.

In terms of Encosta De Lago’s other sons, Manhattan Rain and Needs Further have produced Group 1 winners and on Saturday welcomed another to that club. Jacquinot is by Rubick, a stallion who slots nicely into the story above.

Rubick, who spent his first six seasons at Coolmore before heading to Swettenham Stud in 2021, is out of Redoute’s Choice’s three-quarter-sister Sliding Cube and while it has taken some time for his progeny to make their mark, we are now seeing him demonstrating the virtues of combining the bloodlines of two extraordinary families.

A first Group 1 winner for Rubick – he had Everest winner Yes Yes Yes from his first crop – could prove a very important re-launching point for the stallion, who, having had massive books of mares at Coolmore, attracted just 42 last season in his first spring at Swettenham.

Jacquinot’s Golden Rose win was also a significant moment on his dam’s side as well.

His dam, Ponterro, becomes the first Group 1-producing mare by Coolmore resident Pierro, a stallion with his own extraordinary sireline back through Lonhro and grandsire Octagonal, and back further to monumentally influential stallions Zabeel and Sir Tristram.

Ponterro, a half-sister to Group 1 winner and stallion Inference, is out of Pontiana. She is by Redoute’s Choice, further enhancing the connection and providing a 3 x 4 cross of the phenomenally influential broodmare Shantha’s Choice.

Jacquinot's sire, Rubick. (Photo: Swettenham Stud)

While Shantha’s Choice’s most famous match was with Danehill, a combination that produced Group 1 winners Redoute’s Choice and Platinum Scissors, she has also had a remarkable connection with Encosta De Lago, producing three stakes winners to him.

Among the eight current stallions in Australia to feature Encosta De Lago in their sireline and Shantha’s Choice on the damside is Northern Meteor’s son Zoustar. He is a stallion many predict as a future Australian champion and who had his own milestone moment on the weekend with his first Group 1 winner in the Northern Hemisphere, with Leezoo in the Cheveley Park Stakes at Newmarket.

When time comes for Jacquinot to head to stud, a path followed by the past 10 winners of the Golden Rose, including Zoustar, that Encosta-Redoute’s connection, as well as that double cross to Shantha’s Choice, will not be lost on those doing the marketing.

If you had to put a dollar on where that may be, you would think that Coolmore, where Encosta De Lago and Rubick have both stood and where Shantha’s Choice herself is buried, would be a hot favourite.

Jacquinot was foaled and raised on the Jerrys Plains farm and offered for sale by them as a yearling before he was wisely retained by a syndicate group led by Lindsay Maxsted.

Saturday’s victory came with an excellent sense of timing, with Coolmore also looking for a horse to fill its slot in The Everest. It creates an excellent position for renowned businessman Maxsted, the chairman of Coolmore Australia, and his fellow owners.

Co-trainer Mick Price has indicated that the $15 million Everest, as opposed to the Caulfield Guineas, is the likely next step for Jacquinot, giving him the chance to emulate another Rubick colt, Yes Yes Yes, who won that race in 2019 in what was his final start before retiring to stud at Coolmore.

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