Introducing the stellar sireline of Lope de Vega

As a Group 1-winning 2YO son of exceptional sire Lope de Vega (Ire), Yulong’s exciting new sire recruit Lucky Vega (Ire) represents the next generation of a sensational stallion dynasty.

His sire Lope de Vega stands for a service fee of 125,000 euro in Ireland this year, and his influence reaches right around the racing world. He is the sire of 601 winners from 902 runners worldwide, with 81 individual stakes winners including 13 at the elite level.

Although his shuttling service to Australia lasted for a relatively brief four seasons, he has made an enormous impact in this part of the world with 188 winners from 266 runners in those southern hemisphere crops. That includes 17 individual stakes winners, four of them Group 1 winners.

The latest addition to that list came in Brisbane on Saturday 29th May, when Vega One produced an explosive finish from nowhere to snatch victory in the G1 Kingsford-Smith Cup.

Lope de Vega is also the sire of superb sprinter Santa Ana Lane, a scintillating winner of the G1 TJ Smith S., Stradbroke H., Goodwood H., VRC Sprint Classic and Sir Rupert Clarke S.

Vega Magic won the G1 Goodwood H. and Memsie S., while South Australian star Gytrash has won the G1 Lightning H. alongside placings in the G1 William Reid S., Goodwood H., Newmarket H. and The Everest.

Lope de Vega’s other notable Australian performers include the Group winners Spanish Reef, Endless Drama (Ire), Spanish Whisper, French Fern, Archedemus, Divine Unicorn and Vegadaze.

He is already making an early impact as a sire of sires too, with his Group 1-winning son Belardo (Ire) represented by four individual stakes winners in his first crop of 2-year-olds in Europe last year, and one stakes winner in New Zealand this season.

Lope de Vega’s sire: Shamardal

Lope de Vega is by Shamardal (USA), who himself was a four-time Group 1 winner in France and England before embarking on an outstanding career at stud.

Shamardal has sired 980 winners from 1336 progeny to race, with 154 individual stakes winners.

He has been represented by 26 Group 1 winners, including the likes of Lope de Vega, Hong Kong superstars Able Friend and Pakistan Star, Europe’s champion sprinter Blue Point (Ire) and champion 2-year-old Pinatubo (Ire), along with other Australian Group 1 winners such as Faint Perfume, Delectation and Captain Sonador.

Shamardal has also made a name for himself as an elite broodmare sire, having already been represented by Group 1 winners Hello Youmzain (Fr) (Kodiac {GB}), Awtaad (Ire) (Cape Cross {Ire}), Pretty Pollyanna (GB) (Oasis Dream {GB}), Mighty High (SAf) (Pathfork {USA}) and Latrobe (Ire) (Camelot {GB}).

Lope de Vega’s grandsire: Giant’s Causeway

The next sire along the Lope de Vega line is the great Giant’s Causeway (USA), who originally made his mark as a Horse of the Year on the racetrack, scoring memorable victories in nine of his 13 starts including the G1 St James’s Palace S., Sussex S., Juddmonte S. and Irish Champion S. in succession as a 3-year-old.

Giant’s Causeway went on to a decorated stud career of his own, where his service fee in the United States got as high as US$300,000 in the 2006 breeding season.

He has sired 1382 winners from 2043 runners, with 193 individual stakes winners including 35 Group 1 stars such as Shamardal, Bricks and Mortar (USA), Footstepsinthesand (GB), Ghanaati (USA), Eskendereya (USA) and Red Giant (USA).

Dozens of his sons have retired to stud with success worldwide.

Breed-shaping ancestors

Further back in the sire line lie some of the most iconic breed-shaping stallions of the last half-century.

The third sire along Lope de Vega’s sire line is none other than Storm Cat (USA), who became the first horse in history to command a US$500,000 service fee.

The multiple champion American stallion sired over 813 winners, 177 of them black-type winners including 35 at the elite level.

He has been represented by dozens of high-quality sire sons, and his name features further back in the sire line of countless more – including his great grandson Scat Daddy (USA), the sire of American Triple Crown winner Justify (USA).

Storm Cat’s sire is Storm Bird (Can), another influential sire with more than 63 stakes winners to his name including 10 Group 1 winners. He was also broodmare sire of Group 1 winners and sires such as Thunder Gulch (USA) and Birdstone (USA).

Next along the sire line is one of the most influential of them all, Northern Dancer (Can). The first Canadian-bred winner of the Kentucky Derby, he later sired almost 150 stakes winners including some of the biggest names in racing and breeding history, such as Nijinsky (Can), Nureyev (USA), Sadler’s Wells (USA) and Danzig (USA) – the latter, of course, being the sire of the great Danehill (USA).