Dracarys scorches home in record time to take out the Up And Coming Stakes (Lisa Grimm)
Ever wonder what a million bucks looks like? Well, in the case of Dracarys, he’s brown, got four legs, a head, tail and blistering speed. The kind of speed that breaks track records.
Ranked on the seventh line of betting in a nine horse field, Dracarys raced more like an odds on pick in Saturday’s Group Three Alpha Flight Services Up And Coming Stakes at Royal Randwick, scorching out 1:14.76 for the 1300m and shaving three tenths of a second off Charlie Boy’s benchmark from 2016.
With the wind at his back and the post rapidly looming, the flashy colt hauled in Gold Standard to record his first black type victory and make it two wins and a second from four outings and $141,950 in stakes.
Many of Harron’s yearling buys have already followed up successful racetrack performances with multiple million dollar stud careers – Vancouver, Capitalist, Foxwedge, Wandjina, Attention et al – while Dracarys’s black type victory has actually repaid his yearling price in one fell swoop. And then some.
“He (Dracarys) really caught my eye on the Gold Coast,” Harron explains. “He had the pedigree, terrific balance, great angles and a brilliant attitude. Importantly, for a big horse, he had everything in the right place. That was the most we paid for a yearling colt in 2016 but I thought it was justified at the time and even more so after the Up And Coming.
“Peter and Paul (Snowden) loved him from day one. He was much more forward last campaign, but the Snowdens have gotten him to relax and let him find his feet. He’s a more finished article this time around.
“I was also impressed with the ride of (apprentice) Andrew Adkins … he didn’t get carried away and rode to instructions.”
“Dracarys really appeared to appreciate the extra 100m in the Up And Coming, but I’m not 100% sure what his optimal distance is – I will sit down with the Snowdens and we’ll decide as to where he goes from here.
“That was a great turn of foot though – as clearly shown by the sectionals – and he appears to have it all in front of him.”
With 15 yearling colts purchased in 2016 by Harron of behalf of his owners, Dracarys becomes the fourth stakes winner from that ‘crop’, joining Gunnison (Todman Stakes), Khan (Breeders’ Plate) and Pariah (Canonbury Stakes).
A son of Snitzel, Dracarys is out of the multiple stakes winning Elusive Quality mare, Nocturnelle, in turn a daughter of Group Three VRC Breeders’ Stakes winner Dama de Noche, while other relations include Buffering, Intergaze and a host of Northern Hemisphere black typers.
Paul Snowden clearly believes Dracarys is worth the ‘price tag’ and is also predicting a future with flourish: “It was all about him finding his niche. We’ve been very happy with what he’s been doing at home and he’s the type of horse that just wants to work with you,” Snowden enthused.
“That first campaign he did it on raw ability and he keeps building into his races. Very promising.”
HOOFNOTE: For those of us who don’t know a Direwolf from a Dothraki (no, not the Snowdens’ multiple Group winner!), Dracarys is lingo for Dragonfire from the Game of Thrones TV series. One thing is for certain, the low flying Dracarys was definitely fired up on Saturday