Winx

Bronwen Healy Photo

Ellen Parker

 She isn’t unbeaten, but like our beloved Zenyatta, Street Cry daughter Winx (AUS) has one heck of a winning streak going.  As this is being written, the now six-year-old has won 17 stakes in a row.  The number is now 28).

Slower to begin than Zenyatta once she found her stride she went from strength to strength, equaling Phar Lap’s 14-race winning steak upon her victory in the February 2017 Star Apollo Stakes.

And while they share a sire, the remainder of Winx’s pedigree is rather more complex than Zenyatta’s, whose lineage apart from her Hoist the Flag double is a rather prosaic linebreeding lesson in the usual suspects like Nearco, *Bull Dog and so forth.

Winx on the other hand, has some really complex things happening in her immediate pedigree, which we would expect from an Australian.  As we have often said, the folks in Oz really know their inbreeding stuff.

In Winx’s case, the standout pattern is a cross of Troy in Street Cry over a cross of Blakeney in her dam, Vegas Showgirl by Al Akbar.  Both Troy and Blakeney have Hornbeam as a broodmare sire over a Chanteur or Chanteur-line mare.

This must have been a very good cross indeed since both Troy and Blakeney won the Epsom Derby!

Winx is also inbred to half sisters Source Sucree and Wild Lavender  (there is also an Alycidon crosse, thus adding Rose Red and accruing a treble of Marchetta, their common taproot).  We then find an expectedly heavy dose of Almahmoud via Northern Dancer x2 and his half sister Raise the Standard plus a Cosmah line from Halo.

Do note that one Northern Dancer line is via Voodoo Rhythm, sire of her second dam Vegas Magic.  Voodoo Rhythm is out of Obeah, making him a half+ brother to the late, great Go For Wand.

Also of interest to those who are quick to let go of less commercial bloodlines is that Winx’s broodmare sire Al Akbar is a son of Success Express, a Prince John-line stallion who just so happened to win the 1987 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.

One cannot help but notice that in Australian and New Zealand pedigrees that the breeders are not afraid of linebreeding to old-timers like *Princequillo and Hyperion.  Nor is Fairway, a line that seems to freak Americans out, a source of contempt.

We don’t think it’s any accident that the shuttle sire the breeders in this part of the world embraced was Danehill, who is x2 Natalma.  Street Cry did not shuttle as much but he had a similar pattern in his sire’s Halo/Raise the Standard cross.

Winx tails to the No. 5-B line headed by the British mare Grey Skim, a half sister to Oaks winner Platina.  The family developed into a strong producer of particularly NZ line horses with such representatives as Classic Wave (New Zealand Derby), Auckland Cup winners Starland and Warstep and Caulfield Cup winner Sometime to mention just a few of the best.

Winx’s dam, Vegas Showgirl (NZ), is a minor stakes winner and has produced another stake winner called El Divino (AUS) by the Danehill-line Snitzel (AUS).

We do wish that Winx had taken her show on the road like another super star from her part of the world, Black Caviar (AUS).  It would have been most intriguing to see how Winx’s form held up in a Group 1 in England, France, Ireland or even here in the States.  But though if she never left her native soil she has set the bar very high for those yet to come.  Phar Lap himself might have been proud of the lady who so casually disposed of his record!

Reprinted from Pedlines #179, April-June 2017
Updated for the website