Star for Antonius Pius
Highlands Farm’s stallions dominated features on J&B Met day at Kenilworth on Saturday.
Dynasty (who had three winners on the day) had a Grade One double, with Legislate (Investec Cape Derby) and Beach Beauty (Klawervlei Majorca Stakes), while Antonius Pius’ daughter, Arria, stamped herself as a potential future star when she won the Listed Summer Juvenile Stakes on the same card.
A winner on debut, Arria was sent out an even money favourite for Saturday’s 1000m contest, and duly scored a front running victory, beating Seventh Rock filly Seven Grand by 1.5 lengths.
Previous winners of this prestigious race include Igreja, Sparkling Gem and Princess Victoria – all of whom went on to win the Gr1 Cape Fillies Guineas, a fact which bodes well for Arria’s future.
Arria, who was bred by Drakenstein Stud, is now unbeaten in two starts, and looks a leading contender for some of the season’s bigger juvenile features. She sports an interesting pedigree, as she is by Antonius Pius – out of a full-sister to Antonius Pius’ own dam. Unfortunately, her dam, Issa (by Pursuit of Love), is now deceased.
Antonius Pius, South Africa’s leading first crop sire of 2012-2013, has done extremely well in South Africa with his first two local crops.
His first crop has produced, to date, four stakes horses, including the talented Gr3 Langerman winner Antonius Du Bois, smart filly Yoshie (winner of 3 in a row at 2), and Gr2 winning filly, My Sanctuary. This crop also includes the improving 3yo Updike, who looks a like a possible feature race contender in Gauteng this season, and inaugural KZN Yearling Sale Million winner Ace Antonius -who has earned his connections over R700 000 in prize money thus far.
Antonius Pius’s second crop (now 2), to date, has only included four runners, but two have won already, and he could hardly have made a better start to his South African stud career.
A son of Danzig (also the sire of Highlands’ late, great sire National Assembly), Antonius Pius is out of the unbeaten Gr1 Yorkshire Oaks winner, Catchascatchcan. He was a top-class racehorse, who won the Gr2 Railway Stakes at two, and ran second in the Gr1 Breeders Cup Mile at three – when Antonius Pius looked a desperately unlucky loser of the French 2000 Guineas.
To date, his progeny have won over $7.8 million.
Arria, who has a superb temperament, looks a real star in the making, and is a great credit to her bloodlines!