Danehill Dancer

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Danehill Dancer
Racing silks of Michael Tabor.svg
Racing silks of Michael Tabor
Sire Danehill
Grandsire Danzig
Dam Mira Adonde
Damsire Sharpen Up
Sex Stallion
Foaled 20 January 1993
Died 13 March 2017(2017-03-13) (aged 24)
Country Ireland
Colour Bay
Breeder L. K. and K. McCreery
Owner Michael Tabor
Trainer Neville Callaghan
Jockey Pat Eddery
Mick Kinane
Richard Hughes
Ray Cochrane
Record 11: 4–1–1
Earnings £212,559
Major wins
Phoenix Stakes (1995)
National Stakes (1995)
Greenham Stakes (1996)
Awards
Champion 2-year-old colt in Ireland (1995)
Champion sire in Great Britain and Ireland (2009)

Danehill Dancer (20 January 1993 – 13 March 2017) was an Irish-bred, British-trained Thoroughbred racehorse who won two Group 1 races in 1995 and later became a leading sire in Great Britain, Ireland and Australia. A son of Danehill, he was trained by Neville Callaghan and owned by Michael Tabor. As a two-year-old, Danehill Dancer won the Phoenix Stakes and National Stakes, before finishing second in the Dewhurst Stakes on his last start of the season. As a three-year-old he won the Greenham Stakes before finishing sixth in the 2000 Guineas, and then followed a sprinting campaign, which included a third place in the Prix Maurice de Gheest. He remained in training as a four-year-old, but only raced once, finishing seventh in the Duke of York Stakes.

In 1997, he was retired from racing to stand as a stallion at Coolmore Stud, where he became a successful sire, producing over 80 Group or Grade race winners, including Again, Choisir, Speciosa, Mastercraftsman, Lillie Langtry and Dancing Rain. In 2009, Mastercraftsman won the Irish 2,000 Guineas and St. James's Palace Stakes, and Again won the Irish 1,000 Guineas. These victories, along with successes from two-year-olds Alfred Nobel and Lillie Langtry, helped Danehill Dancer be crowned champion sire in Great Britain and Ireland that year. Danehill Dancer was at Coolmore Stud for his entire stud career, often travelling to Australia for the Southern Hemisphere breeding season, and was retired in 2014 due to declining fertility. Both Choisir and Mastercraftsman, who are also now stallions at Coolmore, have made promising starts as sires.

Background

Danehill Dancer was a bay horse bred by L. K. and K. McCreery and foaled on 20 January 1993.[1] He was sired by Danehill, who won the Haydock Sprint Cup in 1989. After retiring from racing Danehill became a leading stallion and was champion sire in Great Britain and Ireland, Australia and France. Amongst his best progeny are Dylan Thomas, Duke of Marmalade, Fastnet Rock, George Washington, North Light, Oratorio and Rock of Gibraltar.[2] Danehill Dancer's dam is Mira Adonde, a daughter of Sharpen Up.[1] Mira Adonde was trained by Alec Stewart, but only raced once, finishing seventh in a seven-furlong maiden race at Newmarket.[3]

Danehill Dancer, who stood 15.3 hands (1.63 m) high,[4] was put up for auction at the Goffs sale in October 1994. He was bought by for 38,000 Irish pounds by the bloodstock agent Dermot "Demi" O'Byrne[5] on behalf of Michael Tabor and put into training with Neville Callaghan at Newmarket.[6]

Racing career

1995: Two-year-old season

Leopardstown Racecourse, where Danehill Dancer won the Phoenix Stakes

Danehill Dancer made his racecourse debut on 13 July 1995 in a six-furlong maiden race at Newmarket, where he was ridden by Pat Eddery and won the race by one length from Raheen.[1] Danehill Dancer then raced at the top level, when one month later he contested the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes. Ridden again by Eddery, he started as the 2/1 favourite and won the race, beating Woodborough by a neck.[7] After his win in the Phoenix Stakes, Dancehill Dancer started as the odds-on favourite for the National Stakes. Racing over seven furlongs for the first time, Eddery held him up near the rear of the field in the early stages. He drifted right in the penultimate furlong, but as they entered the final furlong he took the lead and ran on to win the race, beating the runner-up Polaris Flight by one-and-a-half lengths.[8] Danehill Dancer's final race of the season came in the Dewhurst Stakes, in a small, but select field. The 4/7 favourite was Alhaarth, who was unbeaten and had won the Champagne Stakes on his previous start. Dancehill Dancer was the 2/1 second favourite, with the Prix Morny winner Tagula at 13/2 and Albaha the 100/1 outsider. Albaha led the field in the early stages, with Danehill Dancer in third place. Alhaarth took the lead three furlongs out and was followed by Danehill Dancer, but Danehill Dancer could not close down the lead of Alhaarth in the final furlong and finished in second place, two-and-a-half lengths behind the winner.[9] At the end of the season, Danehill Dancer was named champion 2-year-old colt in Ireland.[10]

1996: Three-year-old season

Danehill Dancer made his first racecourse appearance as a three-year-old on 20 April 1996 in the Greenham Stakes. Starting as the even money favourite, he took the lead of the race with over one furlong still to run and went to win by one-and-a-half lengths from Kahir Almaydan, with Tagula finishing in third place.[11] On 4 May, Danehill Dancer was one of thirteen colts to contest the 2000 Guineas Stakes at Newmarket. Alhaarth started the race as the 2/1 favourite, with Danehill Dancer starting at the price of 10/1. After the start, the field split into two groups, with jockey Mick Kinane positioning Danehill Dancer at the rear of the group racing down the centre of the track. Kinane tried to get Danehill Dancer to close the gap to the leaders over two furlongs out, but he stayed at the same pace, finishing in sixth place, about nine lengths behind winner Mark of Esteem, who beat Even Top and Bijou D'Inde in a close finish.[12] Eight days later, Danehill Dancer finished ninth out of the ten runners in the Poule d'Essai des Poulains. Odds-on favourite Ashkalani won the race, beating Spinning World by half a length.[13]

Danehill Dancer dropped back in distance for the six-furlong July Cup on 11 July. After being behind in the early stages he stayed on to finish in fifth place behind winner Anabaa.[14] Danehill Dancer was an outsider in the betting for the Prix Maurice de Gheest, for which Anabaa started as a short-price favourite. Danehill Dancer was ridden by Ray Cochrane for the only time in his career, who positioned him at the back of the pack. By the time the field reached two furlongs from the finish, Danehill Dancer had made progress and took second place. He could not reach winner Anabaa and lost second place to Miesque's Son near the winning line, finishing in third place.[15] Danehill Dancer's final race of the season was the Haydock Sprint Cup, where he was once again ridden by Pat Eddery. After chasing the leaders in the early stages, he soon lost his position and eventually finished in last place of the eleven runners behind winner Iktamal.[16]

1997: Four-year-old season

Danehill Dancer stayed in training as a four-year-old, but his only race of the season came in the Duke of York Stakes on 15 May. After chasing the leaders in the early stages he could not keep pace with them and finished seventh of the ten runners, approximately four-and-a-half lengths behind winner Royal Applause.[17] During his racing career, Danehill Dancer won a total of £212,559 in prize money.[1] He then traveled to Australia to stand as a stallion for Coolmore (which Michael Tabor is involved with) during the 1997 Southern Hemisphere breeding season.[18]

Race record

Date Race name Distance (F) Course Class Prize Odds Runners Place Margin (L) Winner/Runner-up Time Jockey Ref.
13 July 1995 EBF Maiden Stakes 6 Newmarket X4Class 4 005 £4,980 01.75 7/4 077 011 01.01 Raheen 1:15.90 Pat Eddery [19]
13 August 1995 Phoenix Stakes 6 Leopardstown G1 084 £83,663 02.00 2/1 1010 011 00.250.25 Woodborough 1:14.60 Pat Eddery [7]
16 September 1995 National Stakes 7 Curragh G1 058 £58,317 00.80 4/5 077 011 01.51.5 Polaris Flight 1:24.10 Pat Eddery [8]
13 October 1995 Dewhurst Stakes 7 Newmarket G1 082 £82,390 02.00 2/1 044 022 02.52.5 Alhaarth 1:24.64 Pat Eddery [9]
20 April 1996 Greenham Stakes 7 Newbury G3 020 £19,860 01.00 Evens 088 011 01.51.5 Kahir Almaydan 1:30.18 Pat Eddery [11]
4 May 1996 2000 Guineas Stakes 8 Newmarket G1 122 £122,262 10.0010/1 1313 066 09.259.25 Mark of Esteem 1:37.59 Mick Kinane [12]
12 May 1996 Poule d'Essai des Poulains 8 Longchamp G1 131 £131,752 14.0014/1 1010 099 08.258.25 Ashkalani 1:37.60 Richard Hughes [13]
11 July 1996 July Cup 6 Newmarket G1 091 £90,588 07.007/1 1010 055 04.754.75 Anabaa 1:10.63 Mick Kinane [14]
11 August 1996 Prix Maurice de Gheest 6.5 Deauville G1 066 £65,876 29.0029/1 099 033 01.751.75 Anabaa 1:19.00 Ray Cochrane [15]
7 September 1996 Haydock Sprint Cup 6 Haydock Park G1 077 £77,249 07.007/1 1111 1111 1414 Iktamal 1:09.92 Pat Eddery [16]
15 May 1997 Duke of York Stakes 6 York G3 028 £28,400 06.006/1 1010 077 04.754.75 Royal Applause 1:12.13 Pat Eddery [17]

Note: F = Furlongs, L = Lengths

Stud career

Danehill Dancer was retired to stand as a stallion at Coolmore Stud in 1997, with his stud fee initially set at Ir£4,000, and he traveled to stand at Coolmore's Australian stud for the Southern Hemisphere breeding season.[6] In 1997, he never covered any mares in Europe, as he was still in training, but did travel to Australia to cover mares there, although he did not produce any top-class foals that year.[18] Danehill Dancer sired three Group 1 winners from his 1999 foals, including Choisir, who was a top-class sprinter in both Australia and Great Britain, winning the Lightning Stakes, King's Stand Stakes and Golden Jubilee Stakes.[20] He now stands at stud for Coolmore in Ireland for a fee of 12,500 and shuttles to Australia for the southern hemisphere spring, where his stud fee is $29,700.[21] His best progeny so far are Olympic Glory, Sacred Choice and Starspangledbanner.[20] The other Group 1 winners from Danehill Dancer's first crop were Private Steer (Stradbroke Handicap, Doncaster Handicap and All Aged Stakes) and Where or When (Queen Elizabeth II Stakes).[22][23] Danehill Dancer did not produce any horses that scored at the top level for a few seasons until Speciosa (foaled 2003) won the 1000 Guineas in 2006. She later finished fourth in the Oaks and second in the Pretty Polly Stakes.[24] Danehill Dancer's 2004 crop included Alexander Tango (Garden City Handicap), Arapaho Miss (Crown Oaks), Light Fantastic (Australian Guineas), Miss Beatrix (Moyglare Stud Stakes) and Risky Business (Singapore Gold Cup).[25][26] The following season he produced Atomic Force (The Galaxy and Railway Stakes) and Super Satin (Hong Kong Derby).[26]

Danehill Dancer's daughter Dancing Rain after winning the Oaks

Danehill Dancer sired Ave (Flower Bowl Invitational Stakes), Again (Moyglare Stud Stakes and Irish 1,000 Guineas) and Mastercraftsman in 2006.[26] Mastercraftsman won the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes and National Stakes in 2008, and was named European Champion Two-Year-Old Colt at the end of the season. After finishing fifth in the following year's English 2000 Guineas, he went on to win the Irish 2,000 Guineas and St. James's Palace Stakes before retiring to stud. He now stands at Coolmore for a stud fee of €35,000 and has made a good start to his stallion career, siring Kingston Hill and The Grey Gatsby in his first season.[27] Mastercraftsman and Again's wins as three-year-olds helped Danehill Dancer become champion sire of Great Britain and Ireland in 2009.[28] In 2007, by which time his fee had risen to €115,000,[6] Danehill Dancer produced another five Group or Grade 1 winners with Alfred Nobel (Phoenix Stakes), Lillie Langtry (Coronation Stakes and Matron Stakes), Planteur (Prix Ganay), Steps in Time (Coolmore Classic) and Unaccompanied (Spring Juvenile Hurdle and Istabraq Festival Hurdle).[26] Dancing Rain (foaled 2008) only raced once as two-year-old, but won her first race as a three-year-old, before going on to win the Oaks, Preis der Diana and British Champions Fillies' and Mares' Stakes that season. She stayed in training as a four-year-old, but an injury prevented her from racing until late in the season, when she recorded a third-place finish in the Champions Fillies' and Mares' Stakes, before finishing eighth in the Hong Kong Vase.[29] In 2010 Danehill Dancer was one of Europe's four most expensive sires.[30] That year he produced Esoterique, who won the Prix Rothschild in 2014.[31] His 2012 fee was 60,000[32] and his 2013 fee was reduced to €40,000.[33] From 2010, Danehill Dancer's fertility began to decline. He did not get any mares in foal during 2014, and was subsequently retired from stud duty. Following his retirement Christy Grassick, a Coolmore manager, said: "Starting out at a lowly fee he continually upgraded his mares and ultimately became a major force in European and Australian breeding."[28] As well as being champion sire in 2009, Danehill Dancer has also been the leading sire of two-year-olds on three occasions.[28]

As of 28 May 2014, when he was retired from stud duty he had sired 82 Group or Grade race winners.[34]

Danehill Dancer was euthanised in March 2017 at the age of 24 "due to the infirmities of old age".[35]

Pedigree

Pedigree of Danehill Dancer (IRE), bay stallion, 1993[36]
Sire
Danehill (USA)
b. 1986
Danzig (USA)
b. 1977
Northern Dancer
b. 1961
Nearctic
Natalma*
Pas de Nom
b. 1968
Admiral's Voyage
Petitioner
Razyana (USA)
b. 1981
His Majesty
b. 1968
Ribot
Flower Bowl
Spring Adieu
b. 1974
Buckpasser
Natalma*
Dam
Mira Adonde (USA)
b. 1986
Sharpen Up (GB)
ch. 1969
Atan
ch. 1961
Native Dancer
Mixed Marriage
Rocchetta
ch. 1961
Rockefella
Chambiges
Lettre d'Amour (USA)
gr. 1979
Caro
gr. 1967
Fortino II
Chambord
Lianga
gr. 1971
Dancer's Image
Leven Ones

Note: b. = Bay, ch. = Chestnut, gr. = Grey

* Danehill Dancer is inbred 4×4 to Natalma. This means that the mare appears twice in the fourth generation of his pedigree.

References

  1. ^ a b c d "Danehill Dancer". Racing Post. Retrieved 17 September 2012. 
  2. ^ "Danehill | Stud Record". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  3. ^ "Mira Adonde". Racing Post. Retrieved 2014-08-02. 
  4. ^ "Stallions :: Danehill Dancer". Coolmore. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  5. ^ "Goffs - Racing Post". 
  6. ^ a b c "Danehill Dancer retired from covering duties". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. 2014-05-28. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  7. ^ a b "Phoenix Stakes result". Racing Post. 13 August 1995. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  8. ^ a b "National Stakes result". Racing Post. 16 September 1995. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  9. ^ a b "Dewhurst Stakes result". Racing Post. 13 October 1995. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  10. ^ Name: (2014-05-28). "Top Sire Danehill Dancer Pensioned". Paulick Report. Retrieved 2014-08-17. 
  11. ^ a b "Greenham Stakes result". Racing Post. 20 April 1996. Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  12. ^ a b "2000 Guineas Stakes result". Racing Post. 4 May 1996. Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  13. ^ a b "Poule d'Essai des Poulains result". Racing Post. 12 May 1996. Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  14. ^ a b "July Cup result". Racing Post. 11 July 1996. Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  15. ^ a b "Prix Maurice de Gheest result". Racing Post. 11 August 1996. Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  16. ^ a b "Haydock Sprint Cup result". Racing Post. 7 September 1996. Retrieved 2014-06-14. 
  17. ^ a b "Duke of York Stakes result". Racing Post. 15 May 1997. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  18. ^ a b "The name's Bond". Thoroughbredinternet.com. 2011-08-02. Retrieved 2014-08-06. 
  19. ^ "Results From The 4.45 Race At Newmarket". Racing Post. 13 July 1995. Retrieved 2014-06-16. 
  20. ^ a b "Choisir". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  21. ^ "Welcome to Coolmore". Coolmore.com. 2013-01-18. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  22. ^ "Private Steer". Racing Post. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  23. ^ "Where Or When". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  24. ^ "Speciosa". Racing Post. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  25. ^ "Alexander Tango Dies at Farm". BloodHorse.com. 2007-11-08. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  26. ^ a b c d "Danehill Dancer". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2014-08-04. 
  27. ^ "Mastercraftsman". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  28. ^ a b c "Danehill Dancer retired". Coolmore. 2014-05-28. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  29. ^ "Dancing Rain". Racing Post. Retrieved 2014-06-08. 
  30. ^ de Moubray, Jocelyn (3 May 2010). "Are the right criteria used to judge new sires?". The Racing Post. Retrieved 24 June 2013. 
  31. ^ Lewyn, Myra (2014-08-03). "Esoterique Springs Upset in Prix Rothschild". Blood-Horse. Retrieved 2014-08-17. 
  32. ^ "Danehill Dancer". Racing Post. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 17 September 2012. 
  33. ^ "Irish Stallions: Danehill Dancer". Coolmore Stud. Retrieved 2 January 2013. 
  34. ^ "Report Says Sire Danehill Dancer Pensioned". BloodHorse.com. Retrieved 2014-08-04. 
  35. ^ Eric Mitchell (13 March 2017). "Danehill Dancer Euthanized Due to Old Age". The Blood Horse. 
  36. ^ "Danehill Dancer (IRE) pedigree". Equineline. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
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