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Grandera: multiple Group 1 winner will stand at Woodlands Stud in Ireland next season alongside Moon Ballad

  PICTURE: Martin Lynch 


Grandera and Moon Ballad transfer to Ireland

FORMER Godolphin Group 1 winners Moon Ballad and Grandera have been sold to stand at Kenneth Cullinane's and Deirdre Lusby's Woodlands Stud in Ireland. They arrived at the Galway-based operation yesterday, having both spent their stud careers to date at the YushunStallion Station in Hokkaido under the Darley Japan banner.

Moon Ballad's career highlight was undoubtedly his Dubai World Cup win, when he was expertly ridden by Frankie Dettori to record a five-length verdict over Harlan's Holiday, with favourite Nayef in third and Grandera fourth.

All told, Moon Ballad won five of his fourteen races, including York's premier Derby trial, the Dante Stakes. He later ran third to High Chaparral and Hawk Wing in the Derby.

A 350,000gns yearling from the first crop of Singspiel, he is out of Lowther Stakes winner Velvet Moon, who is a half-sister to Central Park.

George Washington's half-brother Grandera began his racing career under the care of James Fanshawe, winning once as a two-year-old and running second in the Group 3 Sommerville Tattersall Stakes. He ran placed in all five of his starts the following year including when taking the Listed Dubai Arc Trial at Newbury and running third in the Prix du Jockey-Club.

At the end of that season, Grandera joined Godolphin, for whom his globetrotting exploits included runs in Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, England, Ireland and Australia.

Of his 13 runs in the Godolphin blue, 11 were at Group 1 level, with his trio of top-grade wins coming in the Singapore Airlines International Cup, Prince Of Wales's Stakes and the Irish Champion Stakes.

Both retired to stud in Japan in 2004, and both reached the top ten places in the leading Japanese first and second crop sires' list.

Moon Ballad's top earner in Japan this season has been Venti, whereas Grandera's most notable offspring has been the Group 3-placed Kanetoshi Kosho. He is also the sire of Australian stakes performers Just Marika and Darrange.

Lusby said yesterday of the new arrivals: "We are looking forward to crossing Grandera with European mares, and he already has quite a few mares from outside Ireland booked for next year.

"Moon Ballad will be the only Dubai World Cup winner to be at stud in Ireland and we're very excited to be standing him. We have had a long and fruitful working relationship with Darley."

Their fees for 2010 will be decided at a later date. They join Atlantic Waves, Foreign Affairs, Robert Emmet, Mythical Kid and Germany at Woodlands, the latter of whom is the sire of Richard Johnson's 2,000th career winner Fighting Chance.




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