Valachi to Stand Savile Row

Four-year-old entire Savile Row is set to become the first son of Makfi (Dubawi) to stand at stud in New Zealand.

Bred and owned by Kevin Hickman, who struck gold with Champion mare Silent Achiever (O’Reilly), Savile Row will stand at his Valachi Downs property, Matamata, for an introductory fee of $5,000 + GST.

Trained at Ballymore Stables by Mike Moroney & Pam Gerard, Savile Row was runner-up three times in Group One races as a three-year-old: to Ugo Foscolo (Zacinto) in the 2000 Guineas (1600m), Hall of Fame (Savabeel) in the Levin Classic (1600m), and Volkstok’n’barrell (Tavistock) in the weight-for-age Herbie Dyke Stakes (2000m).  

A versatile and athletic galloper, winning three times over 1200 metres, with the ability to act fresh, Savile Row is out of the Daylami (Doyoun) mare Fleece and carries a cross of Mr. Prospector, Shirley Heights, Mill Reef, and Green Valley, in his bloodlines.

“He was an easy horse to train, a beautiful natured horse and still is,” Gerard said. “He is very correct, with good bone and well proportioned, big and strong, yet light on his feet and athletic.

“He’s an outstanding looking individual that really took the eye and you don’t find many better looking than what he was as a racehorse.

“A little bit of physical immaturity, when still feeling his shins, probably prevented him winning a Group One, but he went close on three occasions and you have to be tough to do that if you’re still not quite mature enough.

“If he stamps them and could leave foals that looked half as good as him, they’re going to be very attractive to people. If he leaves them like himself, then people will have some outstanding individuals with good natures.”

His dam sire, Daylami, a powerful grey that stood 17hh, was a true international champion racehorse. Bred and owned by the Aga Khan, he won 11 of 19 starts, including seven Group One victories, in five countries, and became U.S. Champion Male Turf Horse and European Horse of the Year, earning a Timeform rating of 138 to equal Nijinsky and Cigar, and notably is also the dam sire of hot stallion Pierro (Lonhro).

Daylami is out of matriarchal broodmare Daltawa (Miswaki), making him a half-brother to the stallion Dalakhani.

With the sale of Makfi at the end of last season to Japan, following a very successful stint at Westbury Stud: producing NZ Horse of the Year Bonneval, NZ Filly of the Year Sofia Rosa, Champion Two-Year-Old Marky Mark, and stakes winner Cote D’or, the timing is ideal for Savile Row, Valachi, and breeders.

“Savile Row deserved to win a Group One race somewhere along the way,” said Westbury Stud general manager Russell Warwick. He ran very good sectionals, and one of the best performed by Makfi available for stud in Australasia.

“Makfi has a very good dual Group One winner standing in Ireland, Make Believe. He stands for 20,000 Euros when he went to stud and quite a high profile horse that won the Prix de la Foret (Gr. 1, 1400m), a very good race, in an exceptional time, at Longchamp. He would have yearlings on the ground, now.

“Kevin Hickman has been a great supporter of us and more importantly a wonderful supporter of New Zealand racing. Makfi has done a terrific job and Kevin was one of the big supporters of the horse and it’s quite fitting that he’s standing his first son at stud.

“Makfi is a very good sire. His strike rate in the Southern Hemisphere is enormous, sitting near eight-percent stakes winners to runners, which is an impressive stat. His progeny have done it in New Zealand, Australia, and he has a very good horse we bred called Win Beauty Win, in Hong Kong, that Paul O’Sullivan trains and rates him the best horse in his stable.

“We just don’t have a lot of that Dubawi blood down here (Australasia), from that sire line, and it offers a very good outcross with the bloodlines we have here.

“Savile Row is a very good-looking horse that had a turn of foot and ran 33.9 for his last 600m at Ellerslie. He was pretty serious performer and no reason why he wouldn’t make a stallion.

“Even though he got out to Group One distances at a mile and 2000 metres, we saw some of the sharp side of his pedigree to suggest he was a sprinter/miler more than anything else. And, there is versatility in the pedigree of Daylami to produce superior athletes over a range of distances,” Warwick said.

As to which mares Savile Row could attract at stud, Valachi Downs general manager Jonathan Scully said: “He should cross well with the Danehill sire line, mares by Darci Brahma, Keeper, Perfectly Ready, Shocking, and Zed, and those mares we have in New Zealand by Duke of Marmalade, Dylan Thomas and Rock of Gibraltar. And we also think he will be suited to mares by Dansili stallions: Zacinto and Zoffany, while mares by Dalghar, Rip Van Winkle, and Road to Rock should also mate well with him.

“His family on both sides of the pedigree is renowned for its genuine traits, consistency as racehorses and obviously its fair share of talent, so with all that rolled into one we can’t wait to see Savile Row sons and daughters out racing.”

Savile Row can be considered a very rare specimen, as too Makfi, Dubawi, and any stallions stemming from Dubai Millennium. A devastating six-length winner of 2000 Dubai World Cup (Gr. 1, 2000m) in track record time (1:59.5), Dubai Millennium was named the best racehorse in the world with his Timeform rating (134) ranking him ahead of Sinndar (132) and Montjeu (130). He ended his career with a Timeform rating of 140.

Unfortunately for the racing world, Dubai Millennium died after serving only one crop (56 foals) and although several were given a chance at stud, it was only Dubawi, a multiple Group One winner, unbeaten at two, winning five of his eight career starts that led the way. Standing for £250,000, Dubawi became the fastest to sire 50 group winners and has produced 36 Group One winners. In his last season at stud in New Zealand, his son Makfi stood for $25,000, making Savile Row very good value at $5,000.