Gr.1-winning two-year-old LUCKY VEGA
Bred by one of Ireland’s most respected breeders, Pat O’Kelly of Kilcarn Stud, the powerful and attractive son of Lope De Vega (IRE) is out of a Cape Cross (IRE) mare, combining the bloodlines of two of the best Southern Hemisphere shuttle stallions.
Michael Donohue: “Lucky Vega was our pick of the Lope De Vega’s in the sale. He was a beautiful yearling, just as he is now: well-made, strong, precocious looking and in possession of a good pedigree. It was as easy as that.”
Donohoe continues: “He’s just been an exciting horse all along, and he’s lived up to that early promise.”
Lucky Vega won convincingly first time out over 1200 metres at Naas and was just edged out into second in the Gr.2 Railway S. over the same trip at The Curragh on his next start.
He atoned for that by blowing away his rivals in the Gr.1 Phoenix S. back over that course and distance on his third outing, storming clear to beat the smart The Lir Jet (IRE) by 3.5l, also beating St Mark’s Basilica (FR) and Laws Of Indices (IRE). Previous winners of the race include breed-shapers Danehill Dancer (IRE) and Johannesburg (USA).
Lucky Vega really did take the eye before his seasonal reappearance in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket, he then finished a very close third.
It is not just Lucky Vega’s two-year-old talent and sprinting ability that will likely make him hot property in Australia.
Local breeders will already be familiar with Lope De Vega’s prowess as a sire, as the aforementioned Archdemus is not the only top-notcher who was conceived during the son of Shamardal’s (USA) four-year stint shuttling to Patinack Farm; there was also Gr.1 winners Gytrash, Santa Ana Lane, Vega Magic & Vega One, as well as Gr.2 scorers and Gr.1 placegetters Spanish Reef and Spanish Whisper.
It might not have escaped Australian breeders’ attention that Lope De Vega proved to be a good foil for Danehill blood, either. Gytrash and Santa Ana Lane are both out of Fastnet Rock mares, while Vega Magic’s maternal grandam was by Danewin.
Lope De Vega and Danehill have clicked when combined in European pedigrees, too. His first-crop Champion two-year-old Belardo (IRE) is out of a mare by Danehill himself, while North American Gr.1 winners Capla Temptress (IRE) and Newspaperofrecord (IRE) are out of mares by Danehill sons Dansili (GB) and Holy Roman Emperor (IRE) respectively.
After covering elite mares such as Unforgotten and Miss Barley, dam of Gytrash, in his first two seasons, Lucky Vega will stand for $16,500 (inc GST) in 2023.
Lucky Vega’s first Southern Hemisphere foals struck his supporters with their strength and athleticism, leading him to cover a larger book of mares in his second season at Yulong. Reports from his first crop in the Northern Hemisphere have been equally positive, and the excitement builds as his own sire continues to prove world class.
Curragh Phoenix S., Gr.1 (1200m)
Naas Irish Stallion Farms EBF (C & G) Maiden (1200m)
2nd Newmarket Middle Park S., Gr.1 (1200m)
2nd Curragh Railway S., Gr.2 (1200m)
2nd Royal Ascot St James’s Palace Stakes Gr.1 (1602m)
3rd Newmarket 2000 Guineas, Gr.1 (1600m)
4th Curragh Irish 2000 Guineas, Gr.1 (1600m)
Lope de Vega’s Top Progeny
SANTA ANA LANE (12g, Fastnet Rock, Gulch). 10 wins from 1100m to 1400m, A$8,236,329, 1st ATC TJ Smith S., Gr.1, BRC Stradbroke H., Gr.1, SAJC Goodwood H., Gr.1, VRC VRC Sprint Classic, Gr.1, MRC Sir Rupert Clarke S., Gr.1, ATC Premiere S., Gr.2, MRC Zeditave S., Gr.3, Murrumbidgee TC Wagga Wagga Town P., 2nd ATC TJ Smith S., Gr.1, VRC Gilgai S., Gr.2, ATC South Pacific Classic, L, ATC The Everest, 3rd SAJC DC McKay S., Gr.3, MRC Heath S., Gr.3, MRC Testa Rossa S., L, MRC Regal Roller S., L, ATC E-Group Security H., 4th HKJC Chairman’s Sprint Prize, Gr.1, MRC Gothic S., L, MVRC Abell S., L, MVRC Bendigo Bank H., L
NEWSPAPEROFRECORD (16f, Holy Roman Emperor, So Factual). 5 wins from 1400m to 1700m, A$1,586,950, 1st Churchill Downs Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, Gr.1, Belmont Just a Game S., Gr.1, Belmont Miss Grillo S., Gr.2, Belmont Intercontinental S., Gr.3, 2nd Churchill Downs Churchill Distaff Turf Mile S., Gr.2, Churchill Downs Edgewood S., Gr.3, Belmont Wonder Again S., Gr.3, 3rd Keeneland First Lady S., Gr.1
DREAMLOPER (17f, Teofilo, Dr Fong). 6 wins from 1408m to 1850m, A$961,238, 1st ParisLongchamp Prix du Moulin de Longchamp, Gr.1, ParisLongchamp Prix d’Ispahan, Gr.1, Newmarket Dahlia S., Gr.2, Ascot Valiant S., Gr.3, Ascot Betfred Fillies’ H., 2nd Ascot Tote+ Fillies’ H., 3rd Newmarket Sun Chariot S., Gr.1, 4th Newbury Hungerford S., Gr.2
VEGA MAGIC (12g, Magic Albert, Danewin). 14 wins from 1100m to 1400m, A$4,057,400, 1st SAJC Goodwood H., Gr.1, MRC Memsie S., Gr.1, WATC AJ Scahill S., Gr.3, WATC Colonel Reeves S., Gr.3, WATC Roma Cup, Gr.3, MRC Bletchingly S., Gr.3, MRC Regal Roller S., L, WATC Free Wi-Fi Available P., WATC Amelia Park 3YO P., WATC Hall of Fame Arthur Ward H., WATC Tabtouch H., WATC Vale Hana Dickson H., WATC Kirin Megumi H., WATC Westspeed 3YO H., 2nd ATC The Everest, WATC Westspeed 2YO P., WATC Sponsor a Race H., 3rd WATC Westspeed 2YO P., 4th MRC Memsie S., Gr.1
BELARDO (12c, Danehill, Marignan). 5 wins from 1210m to 1610m, A$1,763,152, 1st Newmarket Dewhurst S., Gr.1, Newbury Lockinge S., Gr.1, Doncaster Doncaster Mile, L, Newbury Washington Singer S., L, 2nd Ascot Queen Elizabeth II S., Gr.1, Royal Ascot Queen Anne S., Gr.1, 3rd Newmarket Challenge S., Gr.2, 4th Curragh Irish Two Thousand Guineas, Gr.1, Sandown Mile S., Gr.2, Newmarket July S., Gr.2, Doncaster Champagne S., Gr.2
SWEET LADY (18f, Dansili, Green Dancer). 6 wins from 1600m to 2400m, A$891,796, 1st ParisLongchamp Prix Vermeille, Gr.1, Saint-Cloud Prix Corrida, Gr.2, Saint-Cloud Prix de Flore, Gr.3, Saint-Cloud Prix La Camargo, L, 2nd Chantilly Prix Bertrand de Tarragon, Gr.3, ParisLongchamp Prix Lord Seymour, L, 4th ParisLongchamp Poule d’Essai des Pouliches, Gr.1, Saint-Cloud Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud, Gr.1, ParisLongchamp Prix de la Grotte, Gr.3
AUNT PEARL (18f, Hurricane Run, Grand Lodge). 3 wins from 1600m to 1700m, A$934,881, 1st Keeneland Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, Gr.1, Keeneland Jessamine S., Gr.2
GYTRASH (15g, Fastnet Rock, Strawberry Road). 10 wins from 1000m to 1300m, A$3,738,775, 1st VRC Lightning S., Gr.1, ATC Concorde S., Gr.3, SAJC RN Irwin S., Gr.3, VRC AR Creswick S., L, ATC Yes Yes Yes S., VRC Ken Cox H., SAJC 2KW Bar & Restaurant 2YO H., SAJC Lynne-Maree & Nick H., SAJC M&B Stewart’s 61st Anniversary H., SAJC Heineken 3 2YO H., 2nd MVRC William Reid S., Gr.1, SAJC Goodwood H., Gr.1, MRC Heath S., Gr.3, MRC Skyline Education Foundation P., SAJC Holdfast Insurance 2YO P., SAJC Ubet H., 3rd VRC Newmarket H., Gr.1, SAJC Goodwood H., Gr.1, ATC Shorts H., Gr.2, SAJC Euclase S., Gr.2, ATC The Everest, SAJC Rebel Raider Series Final H., SAJC Darley 2YO H.
THE RIGHT MAN (12g, Warning, Arctic Tern). 10 wins from 1100m to 1400m, A$1,273,830, 1st Meydan Al Quoz Sprint, Gr.1, Maisons-Laffitte Prix de Seine-Et-Oise, Gr.3, Maisons-Laffitte Prix de Seine-Et-Oise, Gr.3, Maisons-Laffitte Prix de Bonneval, L, Deauville Prix de la Huderie, 2nd Deauville Prix de Meautry, Gr.3, Maisons-Laffitte Prix de Seine-et-Oise, Gr.3, Baden-Baden Silberne Peitsche, Gr.3, Maisons-Laffitte Prix de Bonneval, L, Deauville Prix Hampton, L, 3rd Meydan Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint
ARAPAHO (17g, Dansili, Pivotal). 8 wins from 1300m to 2400m, A$1,948,706, 1st ATC Tancred S., Gr.1, ATC Premier’s Cup, Gr.3, ParisLongchamp Prix du Pont Neuf, L, Canberra RC Canberra Cup, L, Clarence River JC Grafton Cup, L, Deauville Prix Ardan, Saint-Cloud Prix Chapeau Rouge, ATC Fujitsu General H., 2nd Deauville Prix François Boutin, L, SCTC Caloundra Cup, L, ATC City Tattersalls Club Cup, L, ATC St Leger S., ATC Petaluma H., 3rd Newcastle JC Newcastle Gold Cup, Gr.3, Saint-Cloud Prix de Saint-Patrick, L, Muswellbrook RC Muswellbrook Gold Cup, 4th ATC Sydney Cup, Gr.1
CAPLA TEMPTRESS (15f, Dansili, Shirley Heights). 5 wins from 1408m to 1700m, A$614,921, 1st Woodbine Natalma S., Gr.1, Gulfstream Park My Charmer S., Gr.3, Delaware Park Just a Kiss S., L, 2nd Saratoga Lake Placid S., Gr.2, Saratoga De La Rose S., L, 3rd Newmarket Sweet Solera S., Gr.3, 4th Longchamp Poule d’Essai des Pouliches, Gr.1
ZABEEL PRINCE (13g, Unbridled’s Song, Rahy). 6 wins from 1575m to 1850m, A$440,526, 1st ParisLongchamp Prix d’Ispahan, Gr.1, Newmarket Earl of Sefton S., Gr.3, Doncaster Doncaster Mile, L, York Unibet.co.uk H., 2nd Newmarket Joel S., Gr.2, 4th York Strensall S., Gr.3
HYPOTHETICAL (17c, Whipper, Pivotal). 5 wins from 1600m to 2000m, A$1,520,231, 1st Meydan Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 S., Gr.1, Meydan Firebreak S., Gr.3, 2nd Meydan Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 S., Gr.1, Meydan Firebreak S., Gr.3, 4th Meydan Dubai World Cup, Gr.1, Kempton Classic Trial S., Gr.3, Jebel Ali Jebel Ali Mile S., Gr.3
PHOENIX OF SPAIN (16c, Key of Luck, Kaldoun). 3 wins from 1400m to 1600m, A$664,104, 1st Curragh Irish Two Thousand Guineas, Gr.1, York Acomb S., Gr.3, 2nd Doncaster Futurity Trophy, Gr.1, Doncaster Champagne S., Gr.2
PLACE DU CARROUSEL (19f, Duke of Marmalade, Sadler’s Wells). 3 wins from 1800m to 2100m, A$625,352, 1st ParisLongchamp Prix de l’Opéra, Gr.1, Saint-Cloud Prix Cleopatre, Gr.3, 2nd ParisLongchamp Prix Saint-Alary, Gr.1, Deauville Prix de la Cerisaie
VEGA ONE (15g, Distorted Humor, Bluebird). 6 wins from 1110m to 1400m, A$1,802,650, 1st BRC Kingsford-Smith Cup, Gr.1, GCTC Magic Millions Cup, L, BRC Queensland Day P., L, BRC Roku Gin the Gateway P., Qld Tatt’s RC Stella Artois P., BRC TAB Maiden P., 2nd BRC Stradbroke H., Gr.1, BRC Victory S., Gr.2, BRC Mick Dittman P., L, Qld Tatt’s RC Recognition S., L, ATC Theraces Maiden H., BRC River 94.9FM Maiden P., 3rd ATC Casino Prince at Vinery Maiden 2YO H., 4th BRC Doomben Ten Thousand S., Gr.1, BRC Stradbroke H., Gr.1, ATC Schweppervescence H., Gr.3, BRC BRC Sprint H., Gr.3
LUCKY VEGA (18c, Cape Cross, Muhtathir). 2 wins at 1207m, A$580,613, 1st Curragh Phoenix S., Gr.1, 2nd Royal Ascot St James’s Palace S., Gr.1, Newmarket Middle Park S., Gr.1, Curragh Railway S., Gr.2, 3rd Newmarket The Two Thousand Guineas, Gr.1, 4th Curragh Irish Two Thousand Guineas, Gr.1
JEMAYEL (13f, Homme de Loi, No Lute). 2 wins from 1600m to 2000m, A$471,619, 1st Deauville Prix Saint-Alary, Gr.1, Longchamp Prix de la Masseliere, 2nd Deauville Prix de la Nonette, Gr.2, Deauville Prix des Réservoirs, Gr.3, 3rd Goodwood Nassau S., Gr.1, Deauville Prix du Mezeray, 4th Chantilly Prix de l’Opéra, Gr.1