On a day that features nine stakes races across Australia, Saturday’s Super Vobis 3-Y-O Hcp (1500m) at Moonee Valley carries no black-type and may get lost in the scheme of things, but it will go a long way in determining the classic aspirations of several of the runners.
Not the least of those is the nominal favourite Approach Discreet.
The Darren Weir-trained son of Dawn Approach (IRE) is coming off an eight and a half-length romp over 1508 metres at Morphettville on August 25.
On that occasion, he looked to be struggling on the turn when his stablemate Reward For Silence set up a commanding lead. That quickly changed in the straight when Approach Discreet needed little more than a hand ride by Mitch Aiken to dominate his rivals.
With Aiken’s allowance, he carried just 54.5kgs that day but will be asked to carry 4.5kgs more on Saturday in a considerable stronger race.
But he does look a progressive type and the stable has stated the Victoria Derby is the goal this spring. He improved from a career debut third over 1200 metres at Cranbourne on July 26 to a comfortable win over 1300 metres at Sandown three weeks later.
Another from that amazing stakes producing factory at Mill Park, Approach Discreet (pictured as a yearling above) was purchased by D Weir / John Foote Bloodstock for $360,000 at the 2017 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale.
A year later at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, Godolphin outlaid $450,000 for his full brother.
That makes them the top two most expensive yearlings by the 4-time Group 1 winner Dawn Approach (IRE) to be sold in Australia.
But that is nothing new for Approach Discreet’s 4-time stakes-winning dam Very Discreet whose son Naafer was the most expensive yearling by champion sire Lonhro sold in 2016 when he was knocked down to Shadwell Stud for $560,000 at the Inglis Easter Yearling Sale.
Trained in South Africa by Mike de Kock, Naafer (pictured below) was runner-up in the Group 1 South African Nursery but has not been seen out since finishing runner-up in the Group II Merchants Stakes at Turffontein back in November last year.
This is the famed ‘Discreet’ family of South Australian breeder David Peacock.
A daughter of Exceed And Excel, Very Discreet was not just a star on the track she is also very well-related.
She is a three-quarter sister to Group III Edward Manifold Stakes winner Serenely Discreet and Group III SAJC Spring Stakes winner Just Discreet and a half-sister to Listed winner Forever Discreet (Bernardini) and dual Listed winner and multiple Group placed I’m Discreet (Elusive Quality).
David Peacock obviously has an affinity with Darley stallions as he sent Very Discreet to visit Frosted (USA) last spring after she had foaled her first filly, a daughter of Street Boss (USA).
Exceed And Excel is starting to make his mark as a broodmare sire.
His daughters have produced the outstanding Medaglia d’Oro colt Astern and Sepoy’s top-class daughter Alizee as well as Lonhro’s star filly Bounding who was purchased by Stonestreet Thoroughbreds for $1.9 million at the 2016 Magic Millions National Broodmare sale.
Bounding’s dam Believe'n'Succeed is also the dam of the high-class Galileo colt Anthony Van Dyck who recently won the Group II Futurity Stakes at the Curragh and just last week, one of Europe’s highest rated 2yo’s Ten Sovereigns (No Nay Never) won the Group III Tower Stakes at the Curragh. He is out of Exceed And Excel’s daughter Seeking Solace.