Dutch Art
Dutch Art

Dutch Art

(Photo : Cheveley Park Stud)

“His runners are making a meal of things…”

Investors in renaissance art are aware of the fortunes some have made in their pursuits of the works of the Dutch masters, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Van Gogh, Caspar Netscher and Floris van Dijck. Their works are priceless, and we know of at least one friend who made a personal fortune through her inheritance of Van Gogh’s “Sunflowers”, so much so that in her lifetime at least, there was no longer a need to get up with the sparrows in the morning to attend a day job like the rest of us.

No doubt, the connections of the most precocious English two-year-old of the 2006 season, were hopeful that this miracle might be repeated for them when they named him Dutch Art, whose appeal to Blanford Bloodstock’s Tom Goff was such that he put his hands on him for 16,000 guineas at the Doncaster Yearling sale. The son of Medicean was a very smart juvenile, and included among his victories the stallion-making Middle Park Stakes (Gr1), contested since 1866 at October’s Champion Stakes meeting at Newmarket. As a three-year-old, he claimed the Greenham Stakes (Gr3) on his way to a third in the English Guineas, and looked like the real deal.

Retired with a Timeform rating of 124 to Cheveley Park Stud, home of his own sire, Medicean, Dutch Art has his first runners at the races this year, and to say that he is making a meal of things is an understatement. He already has 21 individual juvenile winners, including the aptly-named, Caspar Netscher (Gimcrack Stakes, Gr2), and several other Stakes performers. He’s not only a shoe-in for the title of Champion Freshman Sire, (from some formidable opposition, mind you, including the similarly named Excellent Art, who stands at Coolmore), but he could well turn out Europe’s overall champion sire of juveniles.

From a Summerhill perspective, the news is encouraging. Like our own Kahal and Darley’s American-based Street Cry, Medicean is another successful son of Machiavellian (also sire of Summerhill resident, Mullins Bay), and just arrived at the farm, is another equally well-performed son of Medicean, Bankable, a much-loved racehorse among the South African public for his exploits at the Dubai Racing Carnival over the past couple of years. Bankable proved his mettle against world champion Raven’s Pass, as well as Eagle Mountain and Passage Of Time in England, and while the rush for services to Bankable is probably due more to local fans appreciation of what we knew of him in Dubai, the news of Dutch Art’s early success is bound to rub off on his bookings. We don’t know Dutch Art in the flesh, but he’d have to be a helluva horse to match the physical attributes of our man, who weighed in at a hefty 560kgs in training with Herman Brown Jnr.