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Monday, 31 January 2011

Brocklesby Stakes Stars

For many the Lincoln is the emphasis of Doncaster's prestigious meeting. However, High Class Equine (HCE) takes pride in the Brocklesby Conditions Stakes. For us it heralds the start of the two-year-old race Flat season. Our top-ranked blog is dedicated to pinpointing the best juveniles in racing and why our race analysis for this year's 2015 Brocklesby Conditions on 28th March, 1:25 Doncaster, is one of the most popular blog posts we publish.   

To celebrate this traditional race, we highlight a number of talented two-year-olds which have not only won the Brocklesby but gone on to mark themselves as truly talented individuals


Trainer B A McMahon
Owner J D Graham (2yo)

Sire: Pips Pride (6.8f) Dam: Angelic Sounds (IRE) Dam's sire: The Noble Player (USA) (8.5f)

(19,000gns; 7,500gns foal) second foal; dam 5f juvenile winner

On the 25th March 1999, Seraphina, a chestnut filly, won the Brocklesby Stakes for Brian McMahon and ridden by George Duffield, by just over one length. This daughter of Pip's Pride was a talented juvenile and competed at a high level as a two-year-old. She ran in the Queen Mary (Group 3) at Royal Ascot, being ease when beaten to finish 8th, but only beaten just over five lengths. From there the Weatherby Super Sprint was taken, finishing 10th but beaten less than five lengths. Thereafter a disappointing effort at Listed class was registered. This lacklustre performance was to be soon forgotten when McMahon's youngster ran a superb race in the Lowther Stakes (Group 2) when touched-off by a neck at odds of 66/1. On the 8th September, and fancied in the betting at 6/1, she ran in the St Leger Yearling Stakes race, worth 154,000 to the winner. Once again, although beaten by less than five lengths, finishing 9th must have disappointed connections. Never a trainer to hide from competition, McMahon sent Seraphina to run in the Cheveley Park Stakes (Group 1) at Newmarket, finishing 4th and beaten a handful of lengths.

Returning as a three-year-old, connections stepped up in distance to 7f rather than the sprints of her juvenile campaign, with the Fred Darling (Group 3), clearly assessing whether to attempt the 1,000 Guineas. However, she failed to last the distance. With her limitations exposed, McMahon campaigned at Listed level, being placed on two more occasions. On the 20th June 2000, Seraphina competed in the King's Stand (Group 2) at Royal Ascot, finished out the back, but distance-wise wasn't disgraced. Just three months later, this bonny chestnut ran her last race at Newmarket over 5f in a Listed race, taking 3rd place, losing by less than two lengths at 33/1. With black type, she was highly valued for breeding.

From being a cheap purchase at 19,000gns, she had total prize money winnings of over 46,000, but probably unlucky it was not considerably more with a number of creditable runs in big-money sales races and narrow Listed/Group-class losses. It was remarkable that such a talented filly only achieved one win from seventeen races. Her only victory being her debut in the Brocklesby, although placed on another five occasions.

At best Seraphina had an official rating of 105.