U.S.-trainer Wesley Ward, who nearly took yesterday’s Queen Mary Stakes (gr. II) with Sweet Emma Rose (City Zip), gained compensation at Royal Ascot today with the Scat Daddy colt, No Nay Never in the Norfolk Stakes (gr. II). Ward’s two-year-olds usually break like greased lightning, but No Nay Never dwelt leaving the stalls. He was soon in front, however, and stayed on well to score by a length from favored Coach House (by Oasis Dream). For someone who is old enough to remember Amber Rama being the first horse to break a minute for Ascot’s uphill five furlongs (in 1970), it was pretty incredible to see juvenile No Nay Never clock :58.80 (and it was subsequently posted as a two-year-old course record).
No Nay Never is a member of the third crop of Leading Freshman Sire, Scat Daddy, who is also sire of U.S. graded scorers Lady of Shamrock (gr. I), Handsome Mike, Daddy Nose Best, Finale, Shared Property, Scatman and Dice Flavor, as well as Daddy Long Legs, a group/graded winner in England and Dubai. No Nay Never is out of the Elusive Quality mare, Cat’s Eye Witness, a half-sister to graded stakes winning sprinter/miler Cat’s Career. The second dam, Comical Cat, was by the stayer, Exceller, but was herself very speedy (showing the vagaries of genetics when it comes to distance). She’s from a John C. Mabee family, and half-sister to Half A Year, who took the St. James’s Palace Stakes (gr. II) at Royal Ascot, and to the dam of Event of the Year.
Rated TrueNicks A+ before his win, No Nay Never is one of four stakes winners from only 21 starters by Scat Daddy from Gone West line mares, the others including Scatman, and El Bromista, a Chilean juvenile who clocked 1:33 and change while taking a grade one event over a mile last weekend. Scat Daddy is out of a mare by Mr. Prospector, and No Nay Never is one of seven stakes winners from 67 starters by Scat Daddy out of mares by sons or grandsons of Mr. Prospector. We can note that Scat Daddy is a Northern Dancer/Mr. Prospector cross, and his dam is a reverse of that cross, as is No Nay Never’s broodmare sire, Elusive Quality.
The Ribblesdale Stakes (gr. II) over 1½ miles for three-year-old fillies supplied a bitter-sweet winner in Riposte. Trained by Lady Cecil, the widow of the late Sir Henry Cecil, and running in the colors of Juddmonte, Riposte is a three-quarters sister to the dam of the mighty Frankel, who of course was a Juddmonte horse trained by Henry Cecil, who saddled him to win the St. James’s Palace Stakes (gr. I) and Queen Anne Stakes (gr. I) at consecutive Royal Ascot meets. Riposte, who was running for only the third time, having won a maiden last time out, is by the Danehill sire, Dansili, long established as one of Europe’s top sires through such as Harbinger, Rail Link, Proviso, Fallen For You, Foreteller, Passage of Time and Zambezi Sun just to name a few. Riposte is half-sister to Tattersalls Gold (gr. I) and Arlington Million (gr. I) winner, Powerscourt, and three-quarters realted to Last Train (by Rail Link) a group winner and group placed runner in France, and Kind a sprint stakes winner by Danehill, the dam of Frankel. Riposte is the fifth stakes winner from only 41 starters sired by Dansili out of Rainbow Quest mares. This is a pattern that doubles Rainbow Quest’s sire, Blushing Groom, who is also responsible for the dam of Dansili’s broodmare sire, Kahyasi (by Nijinsky II, a strain that does so well with Blushing Groom).
The highlight of the five-day meet, the Ascot Gold Cup (gr. I), over 2¼ miles, saw a historic outcome, with Estimate, carrying the colors of The Queen, credit her owner with the first Ascot Gold Cup victory for the reigning monarch. A daughter of the great German sire, Monsun (from the only live branch that descends from the 1935 Triple Crown winner, Bahram), who also has French group one winners Silasol and Maxios this year, Estimate is out of Ebaziya, a mare whom The Aga Khan gave the use of for a year to The Queen as a gift. A daughter of Darshaan, Ebaziya has also produced the Irish Oaks (gr. I) victress Ebadiyla, Ascot Gold Cup (gr. I) victor Enzeli, and Edabiya, winner of the Moyglare Stud Stakes (gr. I). Herself a listed winner, Ebaziya is a grand-daughter of the Dan Cupid daughter, Evisa, who also figures as ancestress of the Dewhurst Stakes (gr. I) scorer Parish Hall. The fourth dam is the good Boussac mare, Albanilla, winner of the Criterium de Maisons-Laffitte (gr. II), and ancestress of a string of good horse, including Estimate’s broodmare sire, Darshaan, and group and grade one winners Darara, Dar Re Mi, Rewilding, Darazari, Daliapour and Hunter’s Light. Ebaziya not only has Albanilla, 5 x 3, but Albanilla, a member of the Frizette family, is out of Tourzima, a three-quarters relative to Djeddah (4 x 3 to a daughter of Frizette), the broodmare sire of Never Bend, who is in Ebaziya’s male line. Estimate is rated A by TrueNicks and is basically the reverse of a formula (Shirley Heights/Mill Reef over German strains) that has produce a lot of good horses, including Epsom Derby (gr. I) winner Slip Anchor.
The Tercentenary Stakes (gr. III) over ten furlongs for three-year-olds saw a second win on the day for the Dansili/Juddmonte connection withRemote, who has now won the last three of his four starts. Remote is an extremely well-bred horse as his dam won the French 1,000 Guineas (gr. I), and is a half-sister to Champion European Two-Year-Old and Sprinter, and now outstanding sire, Oasis Dream. The grandam, Dancing Brave’s daughter, Hope, is a sister to Irish Oaks (gr. I) heroine, Wemyss Bight, whose own offspring include four-time group/grade one winner Beat Hollow. TrueNicks rated A prior to his win, Remote is stakes winner number four by Dansili out of a Gone West line mare, with Remote being out of a mare by Zamindar, and the other three, including group one winner Zambezi Sun, being from daughters of that horse’s brother, Zafonic. We can note that this gives linebreeding to the three-quarters brothers Nijinsky II and The Minstrel (broodmare sire of Zafonic and Zamindar)