Monday, January 1, 2018
Smart Missile's consistent success through the Spring and early Summer propelled him to the top of the Third Season Sires' table and into the leading group of 2YO Sires by mid-December.
Now, as the new year begins, he appears for the first time in Australia's top 20 sires on the General Premiership with $2.4 million prizemoney and 52 winners.
That's no mean feat when the top 20 includes three of the world's reigning Champion Sires (Snitzel, Galileo and Savabeel), and five past Australian Champion Sires (Fastnet Rock, Street Cry, Lonhro, Redoute's Choice and Exceed and Excel). It is possibly the strongest collection of leading stallions ever seen in Australia and all of them, bar the deceased High Chaparral and Street Cry, are active.
December saw Smart Missile put up 18 winners of 19 races, headed by 2YO colt Irish Bet who landed the $500,000 TC Inglis Nursery (R) LR on 16 December. Skyray, second in the Wyong Magic Millions Classic (R) LR, and Queensland debut winner Clockwise further strengthened Smart Missile's presence on the 2YO Sires' table, where he's now third behind Spirit of Boom and Not A Single Doubt.
With Caulfield placegetter Anthemoessa (14th in the ballot order) and Skyray (23rd) still Magic Millions-bound, Smart Missile is among the stallions with a chance of claiming that coveted No. 1 spot on the 2YO Sires' premiership on 13 January.
Several recent 3YO winners look likely to keep adding wins to Smart Missile's record. Sparky Lad (with Chris Waller in Sydney) and Memory Bank (with the Lindsay Park stable in Melbourne) have each won twice already this season and Memory Bank is 24th on the ballot list for the $2 million Magic Millions Guineas (R) LR.
Peter and Paul Snowden have trained six winners by Smart Missile, among them Triple Crown's 3YO Smartedge who posted his second success from five starts at Kembla Grange on 16 December. He's also on the Magic Millions Guineas trail and added another $9,900 to his qualifying prizemoney with a very close second over 1400 metres at Randwick on New Year's Day.
A day later Bryan & Daniel Guy's 3YO filly Protest broke her maiden at her third start and will now work through the grades in Queensland alongside her stablemate and paternal half-brother Luna Missile who won twice in November.
The John McArdle-trained Strela, a record-breaking debut 2YO winner last season, scored by 2.5 lengths at Mornington on 27 December. A fortnight earlier the same stable sent 4YO Missile Boom to Cranbourne for his third career win.
Luke Oliver is sure of 4YO mare Millie the Missile's city class ability and after her second win, at Kilmore on 19 December, he's nominated her for a 1500-metre race at Sandown on 3 January.
Over in Perth a pair of talented 4YOs have continued their good work in Smart Missile's corner. Missile Launch bolted in by 3 lengths on 23 December, his third consecutive win from five starts, and No Say In It posted his third career win on 20 December.
Smart Missile also has solid representation in Hong Kong which produced his first winner of 2018, 3YO Super Missile who overcame a difficult run and flew late over 1200 metres to score on New Year's Day for trainer Frankie Lor. Super Missile made an early impression in Hong Kong when third in a November trial behind subsequent Hong Kong Sprint G1 winner Mr Stunning and he looks capable of doing plenty more this season.
Super Missile, one of Smart Missile's five Hong Kong winners, has a year-older full brother, Sacred Missile, racing in Macau where he's a stakes-placed four-time winner.
With quality performers in leading stables across Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong, and more than 260 yearlings and foals on the ground, Smart Missile has the firepower to maintain his upward mobility.
Magic Millions will auction Smart Missile's first 22 yearlings of 2018 on the Gold Coast, including three fillies and two colts in Arrowfield's consignment.