For those of us who could never get close to the Olympics, it might seem strange that silver medalists could actually be unhappy about winning silver, writes OSCAR FOULKES of Normandy Stud.
Counterintuitively, bronze medalists are generally happier about their medals than the silver medalists who beat them. This is a proven fact of behavioural science.
For us at Normandy, our five second-place finishes in the Met – but no wins – are slightly representative of the same phenomenon. And, in the past two seasons there have been two other ‘big seconds’. Firstly, Sachdev going down by half a length in the Grade 1 Cape Derby to Golden Ducat, when racing from a deep draw. He was bidding to become our third Cape Derby winner, the most recent of which was his three-parts brother, Bravura.
Our other recent heartbreaking second was Rio Querari’s, in the Grade 1 Cape Flying Championship. This is also a race we’ve won before (with Sergeant Hardy).
However, we’re involved in an industry that is based on competition (including, of course, the genetics of the breed). Winning at the highest level is important.
We’ve been around long enough to know that the next Grade I winner could be just around the corner, and it may not be the most expensive yearling of the year.
With that in mind, we present our five-strong draft for the 2021 CTS Premier Yearling Sale on 14 March.
c. Pomodoro – Diva (Lot 53)
This half-brother to multiple graded stakes-winner Depardieu is a really handsome chap. He’s high quality, scopey and well-grown. And, of course, he’s from our Terpsichore family, which has given us two different L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate winners.
f. Querari – Westwardly (Lot 4)
This filly has been a standout since she was a foal. She’s a well-made filly with speed written all over her. She’s the full-sister to Grade II stakes-winner Wonderwall, and to the graded stakes-placed Westlife. This international family has some big names in it.
f. Querari – Pelaya (Lot 130)
We love this tall, scopey, athletic filly. She’s from a classic German family that has already achieved results with Querari. First, the top sprinter Pinnacle Peak, and then the 2000m stakes-winner Principessa.
f. Ideal World – Tahini (Lot 179)
Tahini is a classic example of the bronze medal phenomenon. We were delighted when she was a close third in the Grade II Ipi Tombe (although she might have won with a clear run), and similarly happy when she was third in the Grade I Empress Club. By a top sire of both fillies and colts, we think this filly could be anything. She’s got all the pedigree she needs, and she’s a scopey, athletic filly.
Lot 93: What A Winter filly. (Troy Finch).
f. What A Winter – Janis (Lot 93)
Another representative of the Terpsichore family, this filly is a blood sister to the stakes-winning Sarah. We like the look of her, and can see her following in those hoof prints.
Finally, three of our five yearlings are out of Silvano mares. One would have to put this partially down to coincidence, but we have made a concerted effort to get as much Silvano into the stud as possible. In addition to these three, we have another three Silvano mares, representing close to 20% of the stud.
Wherever there’s a Grade I trophy, Silvano will never be far away!