01/17/2007 1:00AM

Hasili brings her extraordinary quality to the Bluegrass


LEXINGTON, Ky. - One of the most famous broodmares in the world, Hasili slipped away from her paddocks in England to the lush fields of Juddmonte Farms in Lexington without arousing the equine paparazzi.

In 2007, the great producer has added one further accomplishment to her record and will soon add another. This week, the Thoroughbred Breeders' Association in England named Hasili the Broodmare of the Year, and in a few weeks Hasili is expected to produce a foal by the mighty Storm Cat.

As one of the best broodmares of her time, Hasili is mated only to the best sires, such as European leader Sadler's Wells and the international favorite Storm Cat. But her most frequent matings were with Danehill, the outstanding son of Danzig who proved a revolutionary sire in Australia.

But in the Northern Hemisphere, Hasili's offspring helped to make Danehill synonymous with racing excellence. And their first match happened more than a decade ago, before Hasili showed that she was a star producer.

Part of her success may be that the mare "throws to the stallion," according to Juddmonte's farm manager, Garrett O'Rourke. She reproduces the stallion's best qualities, although Hasili is "not the American commercial type with a blocky body and a big hip," O'Rourke said. "She is tall and somewhat narrow with not much hip, yet her progeny have the big hips, apparently from Danehill."

This successful combination of the mare's scope with the stallion's power and muscle mass has produced a string of grand athletes for internationally successful Juddmonte Farms, following in the footsteps of their sire and dam, both of whom raced for Juddmonte.

A homebred for Juddmonte, Hasili was a good racehorse, winning the Prix des Sablonnets at 2 and twice running second in listed company at 3. Surely such performances are good enough to earn any mare a place at stud, but Hasili, a daughter of English Derby winner Kahyasi, left her racecourse form far behind with her successes as a broodmare.

The bay mare produced five major stakes winners from her first five foals, and four of those were by Danehill.

Dansili was the first, then champion Banks Hill. The mare's third foal, Heat Haze, also won Grade 1 stakes in the United States, and she is by Green Desert, another son of Danzig. Heat Haze preceded a second pair of stars by Danehill: the Grade 1 winners Intercontinental and Cacique.

Of the five, only Dansili did not win at the Group 1 or Grade 1 level, although he was placed in a half-dozen. A muscular bay son of Danehill, he ran second in the French 2000 Guineas, Sussex Stakes, and Prix de la Foret, as well as taking third in the Breeders' Cup Mile and other championship events at his preferred distance.

Retired to stud at Banstead Manor in England, Dansili has proven nearly as much a revelation at stud in England as his sire proved in the Southern Hemisphere. In 2006, Dansili had 11 stakes winners. The best were Rail Link, who won the Group 1 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe in France, and Price Tag, who won the Grade 1 Matriarch Stakes in California.

Both showed more scope and distance capacity than their sire, who is transmitting more versatility than was required in his own racing career. Among the stallion's juvenile stakes winners last year were Passage of Time and Strategic Prince, who are among the favorites for this year's Guineas.

As a result of his offspring's successes, Dansili was the leading sire in France, and his fee leapt from 12,500 pounds to 30,000 pounds.

With his own Grade 1 successes in the States and his full brother's increasing importance as a sire in Europe, Cacique will join Dansili at Banstead Manor at a fee of 12,000 pounds.

The success of all the progeny of Hasili has made her successive foals objects of great interest. The mare's 4-year-old is the group stakes-placed Champs Elysees (by Danehill), and she has a 2-year-old colt by Sadler's Wells. For 2006, Hasili was barren to Oasis Dream and went to Kentucky, where she was bred to Storm Cat.

Hasili's record for producing top athletes is on par with Slightly Dangerous (English Derby winner Commander in Chief and four other stakes winners), Toussaud (Belmont winner Empire Maker and four other stakes winners), and Razyana (Danehill and four other stakes winners).

O'Rourke noted that "one point of commonality among these top-class mares is soundness. Their foals go straight into training, strengthen and race well, advance into top company, and never have any real problems with soundness. They don't have excuses and don't need any."

Perhaps this is the essence of stars, and like David Beckham, Hasili is a great addition to sport in America.