Breeders’ Cup winner retires to Ridgeview Park

USA Breeders’ Cup winner London Bridge (USA) has joined the Ridgeview Park roster at Muskerry East in Victoria.

London Bridge is the first son of leading Kentucky sire Arch (Kris S.) to stand in Australia.  He won the 2013 G2 Breeders’ Cup Marathon mowing down older horses to score by a length at Santa Anita.

Beginning his career in England, London Bridge completed a hat-trick as a summer three year-old at Brighton, Sandown and Ripon to book a place in the Breeders’ Cup Championships.  “He was never really sure on the dirt,” winning jockey Mike Smith said at Santa Anita.  “It would have been a much better victory on grass.

“I had to keep riding him, taking a hold, riding him, trying to get him confident.  If I kept chasing them, he would lose confidence so I did a little of both and it worked.”

Smith held the British raider at the back of the pack before advancing at 400m pole.  He motored home off the final turn to defeat front-runner Blueskiesnrainbows by a length.

“The Breeders’ Cup was our plan all along,” stable spokesman Mikael Magnusson said.  “He can lose focus but I knew we had a chance when I saw Mike working on him down the back stretch.”

London Bridge (5h Arch – Kindness by Indian Ridge) was raced by Waratah Thoroughbreds owner Paul Fudge and the Australian expat will stand him in association with Ridgeview Park’s Phil and Fiona Sloane.

Purchased for $130,000 at the 2011 Keeneland September yearling sale, he won 4 times in 9 starts and earned $307,960.  His younger half-sister Letterfromamerica (Ghostzapper) was a juvenile winner in Ireland and was placed in last year’s UAE 1000 Guineas Trial at Meydan.

Their dam Kindness is a half-sister to Magical Fantasy (Diesis) who was a Group 1 winner at Del Mar (2), Hollywood Park and Santa Anita.  Another Group 1 sprinter a generation removed is Keen Hunter (Prix de l’Abbaye).

London Bridge is by Arch, a Roberto line stallion who stands at Claiborne Farm in Kentucky.  The best of his 56 stakes winners have been Blame (G1 Breeders’ Cup Classic), Arravale (Canadian Horse of the Year), Les Arcs (G1 Golden Jubilee & G1 July Cup) and South African star Overarching (G1 Horse Chestnut Stakes).

Arch can sire good two year-olds but his progeny progress well into their three and four year-old seasons.  He is also emerging as a sire of sires.

His son Blame also stands at Claiborne Farm and is a Top 10 USA second-season sire this year with 18 winners topped by March (G3 Aqueduct Bay Shore Stakes).  A session-topping Blame colt made $700,000 at the Ocala 2YO Sale in April.

Blame bowed out after a signature victory over Zenyatta in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Classic.  He denied the champion mare a perfect record when she was farewelled at Churchill Downs in 2010.

Archarcharch is also off to a promising start at stud with three first-crop winners already this year.  He won the G1 Arkansas Derby and stands at Spendthrift Farm in Kentucky.

London Bridge will stand for an introductory fee of $4,950 (inc gst) this year.  For further details, broodmare owners can call Ridgeview Park (03) 5433 6306 or 0488 525 063.

SCINTILLO  (GB)  $8,800
BIANCONI  (USA)  $5,500
DR DOUTE’S  $4,400

All fees (inc gst)