Hernando-time for another look

It was a big weekend for Hernando. Firstly he sired Last Look who powered home in the Oaks at 33-1 and 24 hours later Casual Conquest ran a fine race to finish third in the Derby.  It enhances his status as a reliable source of quality staminain a pedigree. He has now sired 2 French Derby winners(when it was a 12 furlong derby) in Sulamani and Holding Court and he has sired an Epsom derby 3rd (Casual Conquest) and 4th (Mr Combustible).  Since the death of Caerleon, and Royal Acadamy’s return to the States, he is now one of the very few credible representatives of the Nijinksy line still standing in Europe (the others are Lomitas and potentially Hernando’s son Sulamani).

The aforementioned Sulamani can take most of the credit for the upsurge in Hernando’s fortunes. He won 6 Group ones over 3 seasons including 4 in 2003.  His successes led to larger books in 2003 and 2004 and Last Look and Casual Conquest are among the outcomes. No doubt next year will see an increase in quality and quantity for Hernando and I wouldnt be surprised if in 2013 I am again writing about what was to many a surprising upsurge in his fortunes. He is in danger of becoming a yo-yo sire whose success comes in 5 year cycles.  He was reduced to crops in the 40’s of mostly owners breeders. The commercial breeders have never warmed to Hernando, mostly because of the stamina ‘issue’ but perhaps partly because of the reputation that Lanwades home of Hernando are less willing to make a deal than the likes of Coolmore and Darley. Alas the commercial breeders failed to realise that Hernando is and was the real deal and at 10k was amongst the best value stallions in Britain. His stats back this up and from 532 foals of racing age he has had 247 winners (47%) and 32 stakes winners (6%).

Last Look the dam of Look Here was unraced but is by Rainbow Quest who was already the broodmare sire of 2 Derby Winners in North Light and Kris Kin.  On pedigree and in hindsight her chance at Epsom was obvious. Those looking for quality in the family will find it under the third dam Dance Quest who is the dam of Pursuit of Love (by another Blushing Groom horse in Groom Dancer. Pursuit of Love finished 3rd in a Guineas and 2nd in a July Cup and had a reasonable stud career until his recent death.

Ralph Beckett has said that he might avoid the Irish Oaks to give Look Here more time to recover from her exertions as she is not a robust filly who needs time between her races. The obvious next target then becomes the St Leger. Her pedigree gives plenty of comfort on that score. Hernando’s was never tried over further than 12 furlongs but his sire Niniski won 2 St Legers (an Irish and French) and Nijinsky as the last triple crown winner, won the Doncaster original. For good measure Look Here’s third dam, Dance Quest is by Green Dancer another son of Nijinsky.  Roll on Doncaster… 

LOOK HERE (GB) 2005 f b

(FR) 1990
(USA) 1976
(CAN) 1967
Dancer (CAN) 1961
Page (USA) 1959
Hills (USA) 1971
Rolfe (USA) 1962
Easy (USA) 1967
(USA) 1984
(USA) 1978
Prospector (USA) 1970
(USA) 1971
(USA) 1979
(USA) 1969
A Glance (USA) 1971
Look (GB) 1995
Quest (USA) 1981
Groom (FR) 1974
God (USA) 1954
Bride (GB) 1962
Will Follow (USA) 1975
(FR) 1956
You Lead (USA) 1970
Danse (GB) 1987
Mecene (USA) 1975
Noble (GB) 1965
Missile (USA) 1967
Quest (FR) 1981
Dancer (USA) 1972
(USA) 1974



2 thoughts on “Hernando-time for another look

  1. Hernando has also sired some very high class NH horses – No Refuge, Sacundai, State of Play, Top Strategy, One Gulp to name but a few. Perhaps this hasnt helped his image amongst flat breeders.

    p.s. is it possible to start a discussion forum on this site

  2. True but Sadler’s Wells could claim lots of top hurdlers and it never harmed him :)I remember reading a comment on the betfair forum that the best you could hope for with a Hernando was to win a race with Mark Prescott and sell it to Graham Wylie for a fortune…

    I’m looking into a forum and will add it if it is not too technically difficult

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