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DRF Breeding Standout: Record-priced Elusive Quality colt breaks maiden in Ireland
Great White Eagle, an Elusive Quality colt who set the record sale price for a European 2-year-olds in training sale earlier this year, wasted no time living up to his cost, winning his debut at Naas in Ireland on Monday by 2 3/4 lengths.
The bay colt completed the six-furlong race in 1:09.60 over a yielding turf course under jockey Joseph O’Brien. He ran for the Coolmore partnership of Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith and Susan Magnier and trainer Aidan O’Brien.
Great White Eagle grabbed headlines in April when he sold to McCalmont Bloodstock for $1,225,808 (760,000 Guineas) at the Tattersalls Craven breeze-up sale to become the most expensive horse to sell in a European auction of that format. Prior to selling as a juvenile, Great White Eagle brought $120,000 at the 2012 Keeneland September yearling sale from buyer Margaret O’Toole.
"We gave him a break after he came to us from the sales,” Aidan O’Brien told Racing Post. “We're delighted with him and with the way he travelled and quickened in the race. Joseph said he knew after going a furlong and a half that he had a lot of horse under him and that he had plenty of speed.”
The elder O’Brien said that Great White Eagle’s next start could come in the Group 3 Round Tower Stakes at the Curragh on September 1.
Great White Eagle is out of the winning Miesque’s Son mare Gender Dance, who is the dam of three winners from five foals to race, including English Group 2-placed winner Quarrel. The mare was bred to Claiborne Farm’s Trappe Shot for the 2014 foaling season.
Great White Eagle actually hails from one of the quieter branches of the female family of third dam Execution. The most successful runner, and lone stakes winner, out of second dam Gender War is Japanese Group 2-placed stakes winner Fusaichi Auster.
Execution, by The Axe II, was the dam of 12 foals, led by the multiple Grade 2-winning King’s Bishop mare Possible Mate, who was the dam of three stakes winners and five stakes producers. The Execution family line has also produced Grade 1 winners Dream Empress, Prenup and Yonaguska, as well as Grade 2 winners Fairy Garden, Tap Day, Guided Tour, Cat’s At Home, and several other Grade 3 and listed stakes winners.