Oakland Park sire Viscount can sire another international Group 1 winner when Kidnapped travels to Dubai for the World Cup carnival in March 2011.
A last-start Group 1 winner of the South Australian Derby, Kidnapped will be among Sheikh Mohammed’s second batch of Australian bred gallopers heading overseas in December. “I think he would bottom out getting ready for the Melbourne Cup this year,” Darley’s Australia managing director Henry Plumptre confirmed this week. “He’s good enough for Group 1 races in Dubai and Europe between 2000m and 2400m.”
Viscount sprinter Rocket Man was a G1 winner of the 2009 Lion City Cup in Singapore and he has also been runner-up in the 2010 G1 Golden Shaheen in Dubai and the G1 KrisFlyer Sprint back at Kranji.
Kidnapped (4g Viscount – Youthful Presence by Dehere) first appeared on the radar in the Listed Jayco Stakes on Caulfield Cup day last year and he banked more black-type with wins in the G3 VRC Carbine Club Stakes and G2 MRC Sandown Guineas. He graduated to the elite level when he came with a rush to edge out Red Colossus (Testa Rossa) in the South Australian Derby in May.
“Kidnapped will be in peak order when he joins the Godolphin team later this year,” Plumptre added. “If he wins a race during the Melbourne spring carnival that will be a bonus.”
Viscount was Australia’s Champion 2YO in 2000-01 and he returned the following season to beat older gallopers in the G1 George Main Stakes at Randwick. He retired to Woodlands Stud and was part of the package when Bob Ingham sold up to Sheikh Mohammed in March 2008.
He was subsequently relocated to Neville Duncan’s Oakland Park Stud in Western Australia. Duncan had leased Darley sire Xaar for a one-off season in 2005.
There were numerous Viscounts in the Woodlands – Darley deal including Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes winner Neroli and Kidnapped’s dam Youthful Presence.
Youthful Presence is an unraced half-sister to G3 Newcastle Newmarket winner Walking Or Dancing (Falvelon) and Listed MRC Summoned Stakes winner Irongail (Canny Lad). She foaled Listed SAJC Hill Smith Stakes winner Deledio (Testa Rossa) before Kidnapped came along. There’s also an unraced 3YO colt named Energetic (Octagonal), a 2YO filly called Teenager (Canny Lad) and a yearling colt by Lonhro.
Viscount (Quest For Fame) was Western Australia’s leading active sire in 2009-10 with earnings of $2.73 million. He covered 90 mares in his second season at Oakland Park last year and remains at a $9,900 fee (inc gst) for 2010.
Kidnapped is the first horse named to join Darley’s northern hemisphere team for 2011. Darley’s decision to send several of its best Australian gallopers to the Dubai and European carnivals has met with mixed results so far this year.
The first shipment comprised Sousa (Galileo), Fravashi (Falbrav), Caymans (Secret Savings), Aichi (Strategic), Time Thief (Redoute’s Choice), Desuetude (Strategic), Marching (Commands), El Cambio (Commands), Imvula (Rock Of Gibraltar) and Denman (Lonhro).
There have been some black-type placings, however, the bare form confirms they are still waiting for that first win.
It’s a learning curve that will eventually pay dividends. Sheikh Mohammed is nothing if not determined and buying Woodlands was a significant step in his vision for a truly international operation.