First Winner for Fastnet Rock Favourite
A tragic start to the stud career of Group I MRC Thousand Guineas winner Irish Lights was put behind her at Rosehill on Wednesday when her first living foal, Omei Sword (2f High Chaparral x Irish Lights, by Fastnet Rock) won on debut like a filly going places. The Chris Waller trained Omei Sword ran up to her recent good trial effort to charge home and win the 1100 metre maiden by a neck with Hugh Bowman in the saddle. A $675,000 Inglis Easter purchase for Chris Waller Racing from the Coolmore draft, Omei Sword was the most expensive yearling by ill-fated Coolmore stalwart High Chaparral sold in 2015. Waller compared Omei Sword to his star mare Amicus (4m Fastnet Rock x Gold Chant, by El Moxie) who won the Group I MRC Thousand Guineas in 2014 and runs this Saturday in the Group II ATC Guy Walter Stakes (1400m) at Randwick. "I said to Hughie before the race, here’s our next Amicus,” Waller said. "She’s been professional from day one but we’d only expect her to get better at three. "It’s hard to turn them out this time of year when they’ve just won their maiden, but realistically she’s a Thousand Guineas type.” Bred on the same cross as last Saturday’s Group III VRC Colin Hayes Stakes winner Tivaci, being by High Chaparral from a daughter of Fastnet Rock, Omei Sword is the first living foal for Irish Lights and is pictured with her dam as a foal at Coolmore in 2013. Her two previous foals died, both of them by High Chaparral, so Omei Sword is a third time lucky. Irish Lights was born in the first crop of foals sired by Fastnet Rock and was bought by Demi O’Byrne for Coolmore for $230,000 from the Lustre Lodge draft at Inglis Easter. She proved an immediate success and won the 2009 Group I MRC Thousand Guineas carrying the Coolmore colours to become the very first Group I winner for her sire. Coolmore sold the current yearling from Irish Lights, a colt by Pierro at the Magic Millions for $480,000 to David Ellis.