The fourth of June will see the release from quarantine of a group of horses acquired in Argentina recently by Mike de Kock, Jehan Malherbe and their Argentinean agent, Alejandro Romero. The bulk of Mike’s purchases will be returning to Summerhill, as they include several for Sheikh Mohammad Bin Khalifah Al Maktoum, as well as a filly to be raced jointly by the Sheikh and Summerhill.

Among them are a half brother (by Orpen) to His Highness’ current racing sensation, Asiatic Boy, regarded by several judges as the best horse in the world. Also in the package is an exceptional filly from the “E” family, which in South Africa alone has produced the Group One winners Ecurie, Époque, Elusive Fort, Emerald Beauty, Eventuail, Candy Critic etc.

evenessEvenessBy name Eveness, the filly was acquired in a somewhat unusual way. Mick and Cheryl Goss were part of Mike de Kock’s raiding party at the end of last November, on their maiden voyage to Argentina, a country with which they were much enamoured, by the way.

While visiting Haras Abolengo, the source of many of this great family, Mick witnessed a fine yearling awaiting its turn to be exhibited, and thought he’d just seen the best colt on show. As it turned out, it was a spectacular filly by Champion sire Interprete, out of a full sister (by Candy Stripes) to Horse of the Year, Eventuail. The next dam was by Liloy (the sire of Ecurie), who stood at Summerhill after a stellar career in Argentina and the United States, during which he produced some twenty one international Grade One winners.

Mick was visiting Argentina with the sole purpose of seeing how they run their breeding operations, but this was a temptation beyond resistance. For any breeder with an appreciation of the finer things in life to enter a nation’s breeding environment and have the opportunity of buying one of the best individuals from their very best family, is like entering the kingdom of heaven. Though the price was well beyond where Summerhill normally shops, a call to Sheikh Mohammed made the deal possible. The filly is bred on the reverse cross of the one which produced the present highest rated horse in the world, Invasor, who is by Candy Stripes out of an Interprete mare.

The seductive presence of Jehan Malherbe and the Maestro, de Kock, did little to deter the transaction, as you can imagine !