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His Highness The Aga Khan

The Aga Khan: eight of his homebred mares are based at Arrowfield Stud

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Aga Khan-Messara joint venture comes to fruition

A PARTNERSHIP between the Aga Khan Studs and John Messara's Arrowfield Stud in New South Wales, which was announced in 2008 and signalled a rare foray into yearling selling for the Aga Khan, has come to fruition.

The joint venture saw its first two yearlings successfully go through the Inglis sales ring, during the Melbourne Premier Sale from February 28 to March 3.

A daughter of Arrowfield stallion Hussonet and Aga Khan-bred Daralara, who was stakes-placed in France and is from the immediate family of Darjina, sold for A$100,000 (£63,060, €72,930) to owner-breeder Paul Fudge of Waratah Thoroughbreds.

John Messara

John Messara: partnership

  PICTURE: Arrowfield Stud  

And another bred by an Arrowfield sire from an Aga Khan family, a daughter of Danzero and Lilanda, a half-sister to dual Gr1 winner and sire Linngari, made A$40,000 (£25,255, €29,170) and will go into training with Victoria trainer Tony Vasil for Lucky Racing, a Hong-Kong-based racing club that is active in Australia.

The next three Arrowfield-Aga Khan yearlings on offer in Australia will be on the first day of the Sydney Easter Sale on April 5.

Lot 103, a colt by Redoute's Choice and out of Vadsalina, a half-sister to Prix Saint-Alary winner Vadawina, from the family of Valixir and Val Royal. Vadsalina was a Listed winning two-year-old when trained in France by Alain de Royer Dupré, in 2007.

Another colt, lot 83, is a son of Flying Spur out of Tazkara, an unraced half-sister to stakes winners Tashelka and Tashkandi.

Inglis visitors will also have the chance to buy into one of the Aga Khan's best families, in lot 128, a daughter of a half-sister to Zarkava. She is by Hussonet and out of Zarakiysha, and is descended from Petite Etoile. Further back in the distaff line is one of the foundation mares of the Aga Khan Studs, Mumtaz Mahal.

All products going through the ring in 2011 are first foals of their dams, who were sent over from Ireland and Francefor their breeding careers back in 2008. There are currently eight Aga Khan broodmares stationed in Scone at Arrowfield Stud.

Six further yearlings will be offered to the Australian market next year and seven of the eight mares are in foal this year.

The Aga Khan's French stud manager Georges Rimaud said: "When John Messara approached us, the timing was right: we had noted an increasing interest for our bloodlines on behalf of Australasian breeders, in Europe, particularly at the Arqana breeding stock sales.

"The idea of further fostering this interest by basing mares directly in Australia seemed in line with our philosophy. Like mostbreeding enterprises of some size, the Aga Khan Studs need to spread their wings out more towards the international, outside of our familiar European boundaries."

John Messara added: “Like all breeding ventures, this is necessarily long-term. The Aga Khan Studs will, however, give the Australian industry access to very sound genes which if blended with our more precocious Australian lines, could throw up some exceptional athletes.

"It also introduces some beautifully developed classic lines, to enable Australian breeders to breed, perhaps, a more versatile animal."




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