WILLIE Mullins has a very smart racemare in Closutton, yet another who could go all the way to the top and land a Grade 1.
Allegorie De Vassy is a daughter of leading sire No Risk At All (My Risk), responsible for Epatante and Allaho, and she won at the first time of asking over fences when taking the Grade 2 Dawn Run Novice Chase at Limerick. She had already won a Grade 3 from just two starts over hurdles since joining Willie Mullins, and these successes were from a career that had seen her face the starter just seven times.
At Thurles on Sunday, racing kicked off with the Grade 2 Coolmore NH Sires EBF Mares Novice Chase, which saw Allegorie De Vassy continue her progression and readily justify her long odds-on starting price, albeit after giving connections an early moment of fright.
Paul Townend performed an acrobatic act in the Ricci colours, but he stayed in the saddle and the combination eventually ran out an easy 19-length winner from Brides Hill. If the mare’s exuberance can be contained, she has no shortage of ability, and next stop is likely to be the mares’ chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
Mind you, Allegorie De Vassy would not look out of place in the winners’ enclosure at the Curragh or Ascot. Her sire was a dual Group 3 winner at the age of five, and all of his victories were in blacktype races. At two he won the Listed Prix Isonomy at Saint-Cloud, and he was placed behind Golden Lilac and Planteur in the Group 1 Prix d’Ispahan.
Readers hardly need reminding that No Risk At All, who retired to stud a decade ago, has gone on to become an exceptional National Hunt sire. His daughter Epatante, winner of the Grade 1 Champion Hurdle and two editions of the Fighting Fifth Hurdle, and his sons Allaho, a four-time Grade 1 winner including the Ryanair Chase twice, and the Grade 1 Henry VIII Novices’ Chase winner Esprit Du Large, are from his first crop.
That first cohort of foals, now nine-year-olds, contains no fewer than 10 blacktype jump winners from just 86 foals, and the Haras de Montaigu stallion, due to cover at €12,000 this year, has now amassed a total of 23 blacktype winners and some 20 who have been placed at that level.
As I mentioned earlier, Allegorie De Vassy has a pedigree that would warrant consideration for flat breeding, as her dam Autignac (Solon), a winner over jumps, is a half-sister to none other than six-time Group 1 winner Laurens (Siyouni). Autignac is now a broodmare in Japan, sent there after the birth of Allegorie De Vassy, her first foal.
Her second produce is Susan Asher (Siyouni), twice successful at three last year in Japan, earning connections more than £160,000. The third offspring for Autignac is a yearling colt by Orfevre (Stay Gold). No matter what she achieves over jumps, it is likely that Allegorie De Vassy could be well capable of producing a smart runner on the flat in time.
Laurens showed her class at two when she won the Group 1 Fillies’ Mile, and over the next two years added victories in the Prix de Diane-French Oaks, Matron Stakes, Sun Chariot Stakes, Prix Rothschild and Prix Saint-Alary to her tally of eight wins. She was also runner-up in a pair of Group 1 races, the 1000 Guineas and Lockinge Stakes.
One of three winners from Recambe (Cape Cross), Laurens is out of a winning half-sister to the Hong Kong Derby and Hong Kong Classic winner Salford Mill (Peintre Celebre). One of his siblings, the winning Profit Alert (Alzao) bred the listed winner and Group 1 Irish 2000 Guineas and Prix Jean Prat runner-up Shifting Power (Compton Place), but she was not the best of his half-sisters at stud.
That distinction falls to the twice-raced Ribot’s Guest (Be My Guest). She bred the Group 1 Prix de l’Opera winner Kinnaird (Dr Devious), and the Group 3 Chester Vase winner Mickdaam (Dubawi). Kinnaird, in turn, is responsible for a couple of stakes winners, notably the Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes hero Berkshire (Mount Nelson), and she is grandam of Ivawood (Zebedee) who won a couple of Group 2 juvenile races, and was placed in a few Group 1 races, including the English and Irish 2000 Guineas.