KIRSTEN Rausing had a racing year like none before in 2021, and this year is not proving to be too bad either!!
At the weekend her current pride and joy, Alpinista, a fourth-generation homebred, added the Group 1 Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud to her three top-level wins in Germany last year, and she is now being spoken about as a leading fancy for the Arc.
If ever there was a female family that deserved to win what many would consider the crème de la crème of European Group 1 races, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, it is that which descends from Alruccaba (Crystal Palace). On Tuesday, August 6th, 1985 that Michael Stoute-trained, HH Aga Khan-bred two-year-old ran out a two-length winner of the EBF Alfriston Stakes at Brighton for maidens on her second start, ridden by Bruce Raymond.
She started favourite that day on the back of being beaten half a length on her debut, and she was to race twice more that season, finishing third and fifth. She did not race at three, having been purchased at the end of her first season racing at the Tattersalls December Sale by Miss Rausing for 19,000gns, below the average for fillies sold at that year’s sale which was 27,700gns. What an investment she was to become for Kirsten and her friend Sonia Rogers.
Alruccaba had eight winners, half of them stakes-winning daughters, and three of that quartet bred Group 1 winners. One of her non-winning offspring, Jude (Darshaan), did manage to finish fourth once in four outings, but she went on at stud to breed the Group 1 winners Yesterday (Sadler’s Wells) and Quarter Moon (Sadler’s Wells), successful in the Irish 1000 Guineas and Moyglare Stud Stakes respectively, and their full-sister All My Loving (Sadler’s Wells) who was placed in the Oaks in Ireland and England.
Last Second (Alzao) was the best runner out of Alruccaba, winning the then Group 2 Nassau Stakes and Group 2 Sun Chariot Stakes. These were two of her four wins, and she was runner-up in the Group 1 Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot. This was achieved from just seven racecourse starts. At stud Last Second bred the Group 1 Poule d’Essai des Poulains-French 2000 Guineas winner Aussie Rules (Danehill), is grandam of Group 1 Prix Jean Romanet winner Coronet (Dubawi), and third dam of the Group 1 St Leger winner and current Starfield Stud stallion Galileo Chrome (Australia).
The Group 3 Doncaster Cup was the best win among six for Alruccaba’s daughter Alleluia (Caerleon), and she bred an even better stayer in Allegretto (Galileo), who travelled to France for her Group 1 victory in the Prix Royal Oak.
A third daughter, the Jim Bolger-trained Alouette (Darshaan), won the Listed Oyster Stakes at Galway, her penultimate run. What is interesting is that she made her debut at two in the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes, and at 25/1 was an honourable third to Sayyadati and Bright Generation. Alouette has been an outstanding broodmare, her nine winners being headed by the multiple Group 1 winners Alborada (Alzao), winner of the Champion Stakes twice, and Albanova (Alzao).
The latter mare won three Group 1 races in Germany, has four stakes winners among her nine successful offspring on the track, and her grandson Eldar Eldarov (Dubawi) gave his sire a landmark 150th group winner when remaining unbeaten in the Group 2 Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot last month.
This takes us to another of Albanova’s stakes-winning progeny, Alwilda (Hernando). Stakes-placed in England where she won three times, she remained in training for a fourth season and, thanks to some strategic planning, was sent out to win once at the age of five. Significantly the race was the Silbernes Band in Koln, a listed race worth multiples of its monetary prize in added pedigree value.
Now Alwilda is the dam of two winners with her first two foals, both fillies, and Alpinista is the first of them. The three Group 1 races she won in Germany were the same races annexed by her grandam Albanova, but now she has gone one better. Alpinista is joined on the winners’ roster by her three-year-old half-sister Alpenblume (Kendargent), trained for Kirsten Rausing by her godson Tim Donworth, and twice successful in France this season.
Alpinista is a daughter of Frankel (Galileo), and one of his six Group 1 winners so far in 2022.