European Champion Almanzor to Cambridge Stud

European Champion Almanzor to Cambridge Stud1 May 2018

Cambridge Stud has today announced a major addition to New Zealand stallion ranks with the purchase of the Southern Hemisphere breeding rights to European Champion Almanzor.

The triple Group One winner will be syndicated to stand in New Zealand, his arrival coming at a pivotal time for the famous nursery as it moves into its next phase with the recent sale of the property to Brendan and Jo Lindsay.

“Our purchase of Almanzor is a further vote of confidence in the New Zealand industry,” stated Brendan Lindsay. “He will be the first European champion three-year-old since Montjeu to stand in New Zealand, so having access to a horse with his credentials is hugely significant. We will be throwing our full support behind him.”

Trained in France by leading conditioner Jean-Claude Rouget, Almanzor was a debut winner as a two-year-old over 1400 metres and progressed to win his first three starts at that age, including a 1600-metre Listed event.

As a three-year-old he established his European Champion credentials with Group One wins in three different countries. Almanzor’s first top-level win came in the Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby, 2100m) before defeating the best of the older generation at weight-for-age in Ireland and England.

In a vintage renewal of the Group One Irish Champion Stakes (2000m), Almanzor swooped from near last to defeat seven individual Group One winners. He then completed a five-win sequence in his campaign closer with another dominant performance in the Champion Stakes (2000m) at Ascot, downing a field that contained four Group One winners.

“Almanzor was a truly outstanding racehorse, he was the highest rated turf horse in world in 2016 alongside Winx with a Timeform rating of 133,” commented Cambridge Stud CEO Henry Plumptre. “He displayed an exceptional turn of foot and also has an outcross pedigree which is so sought after by Australasian breeders.”

Almanzor is from the first crop of Iffraaj’s champion two-year-old son Wootton Bassett, who has quickly established himself as one of the leading sires in France. In addition to Almanzor, Wootton Bassett has produced the leading two-year-old of 2017 in Wootton, the current favourite for the French 2,000 Guineas.

Last week the Lindsays, Plumptre and stud manager Marcus Corban travelled to France to inspect Almanzor at Haras d’Etreham, where he is currently standing his first season.

“Almanzor is an imposing stallion with a remarkable temperament to go with his physical presence,” said Corban. “He’s an exceptionally good-looking horse, I couldn’t fault him.”

Almanzor will stand his first season at a fee of $30,000 + GST as he joins the Cambridge Stud stallion roster alongside champion sire Tavistock ($65,000 + GST) and leading second crop sires Burgundy ($12,000 + GST) and Highly Recommended ($10,000 + GST).