Industry Press

Shadwell’s South African Legacy

The reported withdrawal of Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid al Maktoum’s Shadwell Stud from the South African racing and breeding industry is a bitter loss to the local thoroughbred community.

Not only did Shadwell introduce and race multiple G1 winners in South Africa, they have also played a major role by supporting South Africa’s major yearling sale.

Shadwell’s first major success came when Majmu (Redoute’s Choice- Spontaneous) landed the 2014 G1 Avontuur Estate Cape Fillies Guineas. The brilliant grey, South Africa’s Champion 2YO Filly of 2013-2014, proved one of the best fillies of her generation, with Majmu winning six of just nine starts, including the 2015 G1 L Jaffee Empress Club Stakes.

However, Sheikh Hamdan’s interest in South African racing commenced five years earlier when he decided to open operations in South Africa and knew the man he wanted to train his horses.

“Sheikh Hamdan said we should look more favorably on South Africa and he spoke to Mike [de Kock] about training his horses and also suggested that he and I should buy some horses in the Cape initially,” Shadwell’s Angus Gold commented. “The end aim is very much with a view to getting horses to race at the Carnival.”

With that objective in mind, Shadwell, in conjunction with Mike De Kock and Form Bloodstock’s Jehan Malherbe, set about purchasing and breeding horses, both in Australia and South Africa, and duly achieved a consistently high level of success.

Majmu (Redoute's Choice)

Majmu (Redoute’s Choice)

Following Majmu’s success, Shadwell went on to race a host of G1 winners and champions in South Africa, with this list headed by Entisaar, Hawwaam, Soqrat,Mustaaqeem, Rafeef, and Soft Falling Rain.

The Australian bred Entisaar (More Than Ready-Purrpurrlena) was South Africa’s Champion 2YO Filly of 2014-2015, winning three of four starts at two including the G1 Allan Robertson Fillies Championship.

Hawwaam (Silvano) - Imgage: Chase Liebenberg Designs

Hawwaam (Silvano) – Imgage: Chase Liebenberg Designs

Fellow Equus Champion Hawwaam (Silvano-Halfway To Heaven), who is set to continue his racing career with William Haggas this year, defied his rather hot temperament to win 10 of just 13 South African starts. One of the best of his generation at both three and four, Hawwaam’s 10 wins included five G1 triumphs, including back to back victories in the G1 Champions Challenge.

Now standing at Sandown Stud, Soqrat (Epaulette – Elzeeza) was South Africa’s Champion 2YO Colt of 2017-2018, when he won three of four starts including the G1 Premiers Champion Stakes. The brilliant Soqrat would go on to win both the G1 Cape Guineas and G1 Horse Chestnut Stakes at three and ended his career having earned over R3.5 million in prize money.

Full-brothers Mustaaqeem (Redoute’s Choice-National Colour) and Rafeef provided Sheikh Hamdan with a notable G1 double on the day when they won the G1 SA Nursery and G1 Computaform Sprint respectively on the same day. Equus Champion Mustaaqeem, unbeaten in two starts at two, subsequently continued his career in North America, while his brother tops South Africa’s Leading First Season Sires list at the time of writing.

Like Mustaaqeem, the short-lived Soft Falling Rain (National Assembly-Gardener’s Delight) was an Equus Champion and G1 SA Nursery winner at two. A relatively cheap purchase (he was bought for R350 000 at the inaugral Cape Premier Yearling Sale), Soft Falling Rain went on to prove his mettle on the world stage, winning Dubai’s G2 Godolpin Mile and G3 UAE 2000 Guineas and Britain’s G2 Joel Stakes, before retiring to stud.

Other smart performers raced by Shadwell in South Africa include the graded stakes winners Barahin, Ektifaa, Janoobi, Nafaayes and Suyoof.

Shadwell (under Shadwell South Africa) also proved a major player in the South African sales ring -most notably at the 2019 Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale. Shadwell signed for the two top colts at the 2019 National Sale, picking up Masaki (Silvano-Quickwood) for a new South African record of R9 000 000 and Vasco Da Gama (Captain Al-Justthewayyouare) for R4 400 000.

(Shadwell ended the 2019 National Sale as the second leading buyers by aggregate, picking up a total of five yearlings for R17 000 000 with their other buys including impressive debut winner Al Sakeet.)

While Masaki is yet to race, Vasco Da Gama (subsequently renamed Malmoos) has become one of the top 3yos around this season and impressed when winning Saturday’s G2 World Sports Betting Gauteng Guineas.

Full Shadwell Stud Press Release, click HERE.