's first crop of two year olds in the Southern Hemisphere has had a noticeable lack of runners in both Australia and New Zealand, especially when you compare their performance with that of his first crop in North America which raced as two year olds in the 2013 harness racing season.
Finishing 15th on the North American sires list was a good achievement as he battled stallions with much larger crops in the main. This season at three they have stepped up to the next level with the latest winner in the Pennsylvania Sires Stakes series, Let's Drink On It ($213,482) stopping the clock in 1;49 and winning by three lengths.
Add in the fact that Pennsylvania is the home state for Somebeachsomewhere and last season’s leading first season sire in Well Said and the Art Official camp would be well pleased.
However the Southern Hemisphere has been nowhere near as successful forto date but his numbers are not large. In Australia he has just ten two year olds this season. The only one of these to race to date is the talented Bevendale Boy ($10,950) who made the final of the $300,000 Australian Pacing Gold recently. Art Official’s second crop number a much larger 66 and these will no doubt give a much better indication of his siring worth.
In New Zealand he has 49 two year olds and while he has had eight qualifiers and another 14 at the workouts, they have yet to trouble the judge on race day. One who has caught the eye of experienced judges is the two year old colt Romanite who recently broke 27 for his last quarter when chasing home the very smart Mark Purdon trained Iceobar at the Ashburton trials. Developed by Brian Zampese, he has recently been purchased by clients of the Brendon Hill barn and will debut for that stable at Addington on Friday night.
Romanite is from a Totally Western mare in Roman Tear who, while a half-sister to four winners including Romanston 1:59.1 ($70,870) and Automaton 1:58.7 ($39,500) is not from a really strong maternal family.
Totally Western was only available to Australasian breeders for two seasons around 2006 and 2007 but managed to leave 35 winners from limited opportunities including smart horses such as Son Of Fergie ($323,605) and Shez Ryleymak ($270,688). His daughters have made a great start in the brood mare ranks with the brilliant two year old Alta Orlando amongst his first credits. Another Art Official filly Post Modern who qualified impressively earlier in the season behind the talented Linda Lovegrace is also from a Totally Western mare.
While Romanite is not in the class of Let's Drink On It, he may be just the horse Art Official needs to lift his profile in New Zealand.