New Zealand-based stallion Black Minnaloushe (USA) (Storm Cat x Coral Dance by Green Dancer) has become the first freshman sire in Australasia to produce a Group One winner this season.
Black Minnaloushe achieved the rare feat of siring a Group I winner from his first southern hemisphere crop when the multiple stakes-winning two-year-old colt Jokers Wild scored a brilliant win in the Group I $150,000 Ford Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Ellerslie on Saturday.
Windsor Park Stud's resident shuttle stallion Black Minnaloushe (USA)has made an outstanding start to his stallion career by becoming the only freshman sire in Australasia to have sired a Gr.1 winner this season.
Jokers Wild has now won three stakes races in New Zealand this season and has been the major contributor towards Black Minnaloushe clearly establishing himself as the leading first-season sire in New Zealand with progeny earnings of $187,325.
Black Minnaloushe has had four stakes horses in Australasia this season which is more than any other first-season sire at stud in Australia or New Zealand.
The son of Storm Cat's other stakes performers this season have been Australian Group 3 placegetter Changing Eyes (NZ) (Black Minnaloushe x Imco Main by Danehill), New Zealand Group 3 placegetter Shortblackmini (NZ) (Black Minnaloushe x Miss Opera by Paris Opera) and New Zealand Listed race placegetter Cadre Noir (NZ) (Black Minnaloushe x Gardd by Sheikh Albadou).
In addition Black Minnaloushe, the sire of 28 individual winners worldwide, has made a very successful start to his stud career in the northern hemisphere. He is the sire of United States Group 3 winner Streamcat who took out the Kentucky Turfway Cup Juvenile Stakes as well as winning the Listed Saratoga With Anticipation Stakes and finishing third in the Group I Lane's End Breeders' Futurity.
Black Minnaloushe has also made an impact as a sire in Europe through the deeds of Black Charmer, a three-times group placegetter.
A $US750, 000 ($NZ1.6 million) foal, Black Minnaloushe was bred by internationally renowned U.S. breeder John Gaines, founder of Gainesway Farm in Kentucky.
Black Minnaloushe was an unbeaten stakes winning two-year-old himself winning both his outings over six furlongs (1200m) including the Listed Aga Khan Studs Blenheim Stakes at The Curragh.
He went on to win two major Group 1 mile races as a 3YO. One of these being Europe's most important sire producing race, the St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot, as well as the coveted Irish 2000 Guineas.
Black Minnaloushe has shuttled to Windsor Park Stud since 2002. He had 80 live foals from his first southern hemisphere crop and 20 of these were sold at the Karaka Premier Sale.
Windsor Park Stud co-owner Nelson Schick said at the time of selecting Black Minnaloushe to come to New Zealand he had been looking for a replacement sire for another son of Storm Cat, Tale Of The Cat, who had stood at Windsor Park in 1999.
"Black Minnaloushe was a world-class miler with wonderful bloodlines and I recall that when I first inspected him in Kentucky I was very taken with him as an individual," Schick said.
"Now Black Minnaloushe has exceeded the feats of Tale Of The Cat in that he has managed to sire a Group I winner from his first crop which is an exceptional achievement."
"Black Minnaloushe was a very good two-year-old who trained on to be an outstanding dual Group I winning three-year-old and his progeny look like they will also improve as they mature," Schick said.
Black Minnaloushe's sire, Storm Cat, was the leading sire of stakes winners in the United States last year. He has been leading USA sire twice and the leading USA sire of two-year-olds on seven occasions. He commands a service fee of $US500,000.
Black Minnaloushe's dam is the champion broodmare, Coral Dance, who has left two other Group I winners, Pennekamp (English 2000 Guineas) and Nasr Al Arab (4 Gr. 1 wins).
Black Minnaloushe achieved some fine results at the 2006 New Zealand National Yearling Sales at Karaka with a top price of $200,000 for a colt from Tamarino bought by Dominic Li of Hong Kong.
Black Minnaloushe's position as a champion first-season sire upholds a fine tradition for Windsor Park Stud-based stallions.
Champion Windsor Park Stud sire Star Way also sired a Group I winner, Star Board, in his first crop and was the champion first-season sire of 1984-85. Former resident sire Casual Lies was the champion first-season sire in New Zealand in the 1997-98 season. Four-times champion sire Volksraad was also the champion two-year-old sire of New Zealand in the 1996-97 season.