This weekend sees the running of the Caulfield Guineas – long lauded as a "Sire Making" race, so we thought we'd have a look at just which races do actually point to the top sires, and you could mount a strong argument the best race isn't even a Group One.
For the point of the exercise we went back 10 seasons and took the leading sires by prizemoney for the General, First Season and Second Season tables, and in the event the leading stallion raced overseas we replaced it with the highest ranked horse that raced in Australia – 19 stallions in total.
|General (Best Aus)||First Season||Second Season (Best Aus)|
|2016||Street Cry (Not A Single Doubt)||Smart Missile||Hinchinbrook|
|2015||Fastnet Rock||Hinchinbrook||Medaglia D'Oro (I Am Invincible)|
|2014||Redoute's Choice||I Am Invincible||Sebring|
|2013||Exceed And Excel||Northern Meteor||Casino Prince|
|2012||Fastnet Rock||Casino Prince||Artie Schiller (Written Tycoon)|
|2010||Redoute's Choice||Stratum||Fastnet Rock|
|2009||Encosta De Lago||Charge Forward||Exceed And Excel|
|2008||Encosta De Lago||Exceed And Excel||Hussonet (Choisir)|
Then we simply took their careers and compared firstly the races they competed in, and then the races they won.
As far as races where the best stallions compete, the top races are indeed the Golden Slipper and Caulfield Guineas but winning is not necessarily a pre-requisite.
Pierro, Sebring and Stratum all won a Golden Slipper and went on to success at stud but the current star of the show, Snitzel finished 12th in his year, Fastnet Rock 4th, Exceed And Excel 9th and Written Tycoon 11th.
So just showing the ability to be competitive at that level at that stage of their career would seem every bit as good a pointer as being able to produce a career best on that day.
Likewise the Caulfield Guineas – Redoute's Choice and Lonhro won it, but they are the only two on the list, while a further nine took part but were beaten including the likes of Encosta De Lago 3rd and Fastnet Rock 8th.
The interesting part of that competitors list though is that while The Golden Slipper, Caulfield Guineas and Newmarket Hcp might be expected, the next two most prolific races are the San Domenico Stakes, a Group 3, and the Todman Slipper Trial, a Group 2.
And when you look at the races most won by this list of top sires, it's the Gr.2 Todman Slipper Trial, five of them in fact – Exceed And Excel, Charge Forward, Written Tycoon, Smart Missile and Pierro.
And the second most prolific, another Golden Slipper lead up, The Gr.2 Skyline Stakes, won by Choisir, Casino Prince, Hinchinbrook and Snitzel.
Which interestingly means nine of the 19 either won the Skyline Stakes or Todman Trial.
So this weekend's Caulfield Guineas does have the stats to back it as a signal for a top sire but don't discount the beaten brigade.
Fortunately, there's a bit of a trend there too to thin out the pretenders, the roughest priced of the 10 leading sires to take part in the Caulfield Guineas was $12, with only two being double figures so you've got to be a chance, not just showing up.
Races where the most horses competed:
|Runners||Registered Race Name|
|12||ATC Golden Slipper Stakes|
|10||MRC Caulfield Guineas|
|9||VRC Newmarket Hcp|
|9||ATC San Domenico Stakes|
|8||ATC Sires' Produce Stakes|
|8||ATC Todman Slipper Trial|
|6||ATC Skyline Stakes|
|6||ATC George Ryder Stakes|
|6||ATC TJ Smith Stakes|
|6||City Tatts Roman Consul Stks|
|5||MRC Invitation Stakes|
|5||MRC Oakleigh Plate|
|5||VRC Lightning Stakes|
|5||VRC Ascot Vale Stakes|
|5||ATC Up And Coming Stakes|
|4||ATC Pago Pago Stakes|
|4||ATC Golden Rose Stakes|
|4||ATC Doncaster Handicap|
|4||ATC All Aged Stakes|
|4||ATC Champagne Stakes|
|4||MVRC W.S. Cox Plate|
|4||MVRC William Reid Stakes|
|4||MRC C.F. Orr Stakes|
|3||MRC Futurity Stakes|
|3||MVRC Moonee Valley Stakes|
|3||VRC Linlithgow Stakes|
|3||VRC Danehill Stakes|
|3||ATC Challenge Stakes|
|3||ATC Run To The Rose|
|3||ATC Warwick Stakes|
Races where most horses won.
|Runners||Registered Race Name|
|5||ATC Todman Slipper Trial|
|4||ATC Skyline Stakes|
|3||City Tatts Roman Consul Stks|
|3||ATC Up And Coming Stakes|
|3||ATC George Ryder Stakes|
|3||ATC Golden Slipper Stakes|
|2||ATC Hobartville Stakes|
|2||ATC Royal Sovereign Stakes|
|2||ATC Run To The Rose|
|2||ATC San Domenico Stakes|
|2||ATC Chelmsford Stakes|
|2||ATC Chipping Norton Stakes|
|2||ATC Warwick Stakes|
|2||MRC C.F. Orr Stakes|
|2||MRC Caulfield Guineas|
|2||MRC Caulfield Stakes|
|2||MRC Invitation Stakes|
|2||MRC Oakleigh Plate|
|2||MVRC Moonee Valley Stakes|
|2||VRC Ascot Vale Stakes|
|2||VRC Lightning Stakes|
|2||VRC Linlithgow Stakes|
|2||ATC Sires' Produce Stakes|
Craig Tompson - Breednet