The “book full” sign has gone up at Rosemont Stud for the scintillating Starspangledbanner, but not before canny breeder Tony Santic booked in his wonder mare Makybe Diva.
Santic decided the mating commerciality and the romance of the pairing was too irresistible to pass up.
Santic of course famously bred Makybe Diva, the winner of three consecutive Melbourne Cups, but is equally as famous for producing Starspangledbanner from his then Makybe Stud. In a quirky twist of fate, Rosemont purchased a share in Starspangledbanner when he went to stud at Coolmore in 2011 and in 2012 acquired 1400 acres of the Makybe Stud property from Tony. Now neighbors, Rosemont and Santic may have the match made in heaven if the great mare can strike in foal to the emerging freakish young stallion.
“It’s such a great story. Tony bred both Makybe Diva and Star and they have had such extraordinary lives to date that have seen them race around the world and earn international acclaim. But here they are, now living on neighboring properties in Geelong and with the chance to produce one of the most high profile foals the world has ever seen. It’s quite special really,” Anthony Mithen of Rosemont said.
“Tony wanted to catch up this morning, as he often does. He pops in and has a coffee just to make sure we are looking after the place I reckon! He always leaves with a smile on his face, but today it was me that had the smile. He confirmed an earlier tentative booking that Makybe Diva would be visiting Starspangledbanner in September. We went down and gave the big fella a pat which he seemed to enjoy .. Tony that is!”
Starspangledbanner has enjoyed an unprecedented start to his stud career, siring the winners of the Royal Ascot Coventry Stakes and the Queen Mary Stakes, both prestigious G2 events.
He has just 32 live 2yos to race for him in Europe. He has around the same number of rising 2yos in Australia which made their presence felt at recent yearling sales selling for as much as $240,000. He managed to get 24 mares from 51 in foal when relocated back to Rosemont, the farm where he was born for Santic, last spring and his limited book is now full with a growing waitlist hopeful of getting a spot come the season.
Rosemont’s other star stallion, Toorak Toff, who holds the record for the fastest ever winning time in the G1 Golden Rose Stakes, is approaching 90 bookings after covering 100 and 119 mares in his first two seasons. “He is flying along and proving very popular given the quality of foals he has on the ground. We sold a couple of weanlings recently in Melbourne for $30k and $50k while they made up to $72k on the Gold Coast, so the market is a real wake-up to him at the moment as well,” Mithen said. Toorak Toff’s advertised fee is $15k plus GST.