WHEN Eagles By Day beat Communique by half a length to win the Group 3 John Smith’s Silver Cup Stakes over 14 furlongs at York two years ago, it became almost inevitable that he would secure a place at stud.
He had been third to Japan in the Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes the previous summer, just under two months after a runaway success at Salisbury, and having finished fourth to Stradivarius in the Group 1 Goodwood Cup just 10 days after his pattern success, he rounded off the track phase of his career last October when chasing home Hukum in the Group 3 Cumberland Lodge Stakes at Ascot.
His sire’s sons are attracting plenty of attention in both the flat and National Hunt sectors, but what put this horse on the radar as a sire prospect for the latter was the identity of his dam. Vanessa Hutch’s homebred Missunited (Golan) was one of the best dual-purpose mares on the track, the bare tally of a dozen wins from 29 starts just scratching the surface of what she achieved.
She started off in bumpers, winning easily at Listowel and Punchestown, before a debut success over hurdles that was followed just one month later by her first run on the flat. She was short-headed in that, won easily on her next two starts, and mixed hurdles and the flat over the following year.
She won the Grade A Galway Hurdle by almost four lengths, plus a Grade 3 mares’ novice hurdle at Limerick, she won listed races on the flat at Galway and Leopardstown, and as a four-year-old she made the frame in the Group 1 Gold Cup at Royal Ascot before winning the Group 3 Lillie Langtry Stakes over six furlongs less at Goodwood.
The Ascot feature had produced a three-way finish in which Missunited lost out to Estimate and Leading Light, mares passing the post first and third. However, Estimate was later disqualified, thereby elevating the Michael Winters-trained bay to second. A talented colt of hers was always going to have a future as a stallion.
Eagles By Day and his three-time winning full-sister Au Clair De Lune are by the Timeform 140-rated superstar and leading classic sire Sea The Stars (Cape Cross), the half-brother to the phenomenal Galileo (Sadler’s Wells) and whose 88 stakes winners so far feature 16 Group 1 scorers. They include the milers Baaeed and Zelzal, eight-to-10-furlong horse Fifty Stars, classic winners Harzand (Derby, Irish Derby), Miss Yoda (Preis der Diana), Sea Of Class (Irish Oaks) Sea The Moon (Deutsches Derby), Star Catcher (Irish Oaks), and Taghrooda (Oaks), plus other standouts such as Crystal Ocean and Stradivarius.
Of those, Sea The Moon and Zelzal are making their name as flat sires, the first-named responsible for Group 1 heroine Alpine Star (plus National Hunt Grade 1 standout Allmankind), whereas French-based Zelzal already has a pair of first-crop US Grade 3 scorers to his name in 2022. National Hunt sire Crystal Ocean, on the other hand covered 302 mares in 2021.
EAGLES BY DAY (IRE), Bay or Brown 2016. Won two races, £95,875, from 1½ miles to 1 mile 5¾ furlongs, at 3 and 4 years including, Silver Cup Stakes, York, Gr.3, also placed second in Cumberland Lodge Stakes, Ascot, Gr.3, and third in King Edward VII Stakes, Ascot, Gr.2.
Retires to Stud in 2022.
Stands at: Glenview Stud, Fermoy, Co Cork, P61 HE30, Ireland
Contact: Paul Cashman, Donal White, Rachel Robinson, Stephen O’Flynn
Telephone: +353 (0)25 36701