Fastnet as a broodmare sire – Lope de Vega on top

This article is an edited version that originally appeared in Thoroughbred Daily News Australia New Zealand, written by Lydia Symonds.

Fresh from siring two new stakes winners as a broodmare sire on Saturday, we take a deep-dive into Fastnet Rock’s exploits as a broodmare sire.

Fastnet Rock’s exceptional talent as a broodmare sire is already clear, even as this chapter of his career is emerging, and on Saturday he added two new stakes winners to his tally, when Zougotcha (Zoustar) landed the G1 Flight S. at Randwick, while Platinum Jubilee (Zoustar) saluted in the G3 Gimcrack S.

Fastnet Rock, a son of the influential Danehill (USA), retired to stud in 2005 and since his time in the breeding shed the stallion has racked up 189 stakes winners worldwide, headed by 42 Group 1 winners.

Meanwhile, 71 stakes winners have been produced by his daughters and 52 of those have come in the Southern Hemisphere and they are spearheaded by five top-flight winners.

An elite cross

Unsurprisingly, one of the best nicks for daughters of Fastnet Rock is when they are mated with the late breed-shaper Galileo (Ire) with this cross having produced 17 winners from 24 runners.

However, Fastnet Rock’s most elite cross by earnings – over $12,591,469, with a superb strike rate from comparatively low numbers – is with Lope de Vega (Ire), who shuttled to the now defunct Patinack Farm in Australia for four seasons. During this stint he left 19 Southern Hemisphere-bred stakes scorers, including an impressive four top-flight winners.

His Southern Hemisphere-bred Group 1 winners are: Vega One, Vega Magic, Santa Ana Lane and Gytrash, with the latter two brilliant sprinters from daughters of Fastnet Rock in Fast Fleet and Miss Barley.

Santa Ana Lane, is the top performer on this cross – winning 10 times in his career, headlined by wins in five Group 1s.

Globally, the Lope de Vega / Fastnet Rock cross has produced eight winners from 13 runners, headed by three stakes winners and two Group 1 winners, firing at a phenomenal stakes winners to runners strike rate of 23 per cent.

Meanwhile, the Lope de Vega / Fastnet Rock cross came to the fore once again when Faith In Humanity (Fr) landed the G3 Pebbles S. over 1600 metres at Belmont on September 18.

With Lope de Vega’s shuttling days now firmly behind him, breeders in Australasia are now provided with access to the successful cross via one his elite sire sons, the juvenile Group 1-winner Lucky Vega (Ire), who shuttles to Yulong Stud and whose first crop of Southern Hemisphere-bred foals have just hit the ground.

He is covering his second book of mares at the Victorian operation for a fee of $19,250 (inc GST).

Broodmare sire on the rise

This run of good form as a broodmare sire sees the stallion sit second, by both winners and earnings, behind the great Encosta De Lago in the race to be crowned Australia’s Champion Broodmare Sire this season.

Over the past few seasons, Fastnet Rock has slowly been making in-roads on the Leading Broodmare table and enjoyed his best finish last season, completing the season in third (by winners), a tally that was bettered only by Encosta De Lago and Redoute’s Choice, with the latter having over 100 runners more, while the former had more than 200 additional runners.