Mishriff the latest star from Eljazzi family

Seguiring Mishriff’s Saudi Cup victory, here’s how thebreedingshed covered his wider family after he won the Prix du Jockey Club last July…

A champion two-year-old, a Breeders’ Cup winner and the winner of a French classic. Those are some of the updates in just the last twelve months to what must be one of the ‘hottest’ families at present. Those three horses – Pinatubo, Uni and Mishriff – each descend from different daughters of the 1981-foaled mare Eljazzi.

She was by Robert Sangster’s Eclipse Stakes and Sussex Stakes winner Artaius out of Border Bounty who was runner-up in the Musidora Stakes, the Yorkshire Oaks and the Park Hill Stakes.

Border Bounty’s best son was Pitcairn, whose wins included the Hungerford Stakes and Goodwood Mile (he was placed in the Middle Park, Dewhurst, Irish 2000 Guineas and Champion Stakes) and who went on to sire the Eclipse and King George winner Ela-Mana-Mou. A sister to Pitcairn, Dingle Bay, produced the very good stayer Assessor, winner of the Prix du Cadran and Prix Royal-Oak.

Bought as a yearling for 92,000 guineas, Eljazzi made only four starts for Henry Cecil and her Saudi owner Prince Faisal. Eljazzi was an impressive winner of a maiden at Leicester over seven furlongs on her only start at two but failed to add to that success at three when she finished fifth to Pebbles in the Nell Gwyn Stakes and then second in a couple of minor events at Newmarket and Newbury over a mile and a quarter.

Eljazzi’s broodmare career proved much more productive as she became dam of ten winners, including the 1993 Ebor winner Sarawat who was by Derby winner Slip Anchor. But her best foal was the Kris filly Rafha, not only a classic winner herself, but also the most influential of several daughters of Eljazzi at stud.

Rafha won the Prix de Diane for Prince Faisal in 1990 and, thirty years later, her great grandson Mishriff landed the Prix du Jockey Club in the same colours over the same course and distance at Chantilly. Mishriff’s dam Contradict is out of Rafha’s daughter Acts of Grace who won the Princess Royal Stakes. Contradict had earlier produced last year’s Craven Stakes runner-up Momkin and the French mile listed winner Orbaan (winner of a handicap at York just days after Mishriff won in France) who is inbred 2×3 to Rafha.

Rafha is best known now for her hugely successful stallion sons Invincible Spirit, the sire of Orbaan, and Kodiac, by Green Desert and Danehill respectively. Both are among the top ten sires in Britain and Ireland this season, Kodiac in fourth place in the table and fresh from a group-race treble on the final day of Royal Ascot that included Hello Youmzain’s win in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes. Kodiac’s 2020 fee was 65,000, though he started out at stud (at only 5,000) very much in the shadow of elder sibling Invincible Spirit who boasted a better racing record with a Group 1 success in the Sprint Cup at Haydock.

Invincible Spirit, who had his first British classic winner in 2019 when Magna Grecia won the 2000 Guineas, was still covering at a fee of 100,000 at the Irish National Stud this year, ten times his fee when he started out. Invincible Spirit is now aged twenty-three, but had another Group 1 when Nazeef won the Falmouth Stakes last week and, with stallion sons such as Kingman and I Am Invincible, the names of Eljazzi and Rafha will continue to appear in the pedigrees of plenty more good horses for some time to come.

Invincible Spirit and Kodiac were just two of Rafha’s eleven winners. Kodiac’s sister Massarra, a six-furlong listed winner at two, has become another of the family’s successful broodmares, initially for Prince Faisal, for whom she produced the Gran Criterium winner Nayarra (runner-up, like her dam, in the Nell Gwyn), and more recently since being bought for 600,000 guineas by Coolmore in 2009.

Repeat matings with Galileo have produced several good winners, including Gustav Klimt who won the Superlative Stakes at two and was placed in several Group 1 contests at three, including the Irish 2000 Guineas and – making him a very atypical Galileo – the Sprint Cup. Three-year-old filly Blissful won a listed race at Leopardstown last year, while the latest daughter of Galileo and Massarra to reach the track is two-year-old Amigable who made a promising debut at The Curragh last month.

Nayarra has remained in Prince Faisal’s Nawara Stud broodmare band and had a couple of her sons win on consecutive days at Doncaster last month; her two-year-old Seventh Kingdom, who is by Frankel, made an impressive winning debut over seven furlongs (third since in the Superlative Stakes), while the next day his six-year-old half-brother Lahore looked better than ever when winning a five-furlong handicap.

Godolphin, as well as Coolmore, are reaping the rewards of Eljazzi’s legacy as a broodmare. Last season’s unbeaten champion two-year-old Pinatubo is a great grandson of El Jazirah, an unraced sister to Rafha. El Jazirah’s daughter Mount Elbrus, a 160,000 guinea yearling by Barathea, won the listed Prix Petite Etoile for Sheikh Mohammed and produced Pinatubo’s dam Lava Flow who was also a listed winner in France in the Prix de la Seine. Just a week after Mishriff, Pinatubo was successful in a French Group 1 when getting off the mark for the year in the Prix Jean Prat at Deauville.

Wosaita, who was by Generous, ran three times without success but has become another of Eljazzi’s daughters to found her own very successful branch of the family. Wosaita produced a pattern winner of her own when her daughter Whazzis won the Group 3 Premio Sergio Cumani at Milan over a mile. But she’s also the grandam of the Mill Reef and Greenham Stakes winner James Garfield and the ex-French mare Uni whose Breeders’ Cup Mile win at Santa Anita last November helped her to an Eclipse Award as champion turf female.

The latest granddaughter of Wosaita to land a stakes race is the five-year-old Cape Cross mare Nkosikazi who won last month’s Group 3 Hoppings Fillies’ Stakes at Newcastle. She’s a half-brother to Juan Elcano who was fifth at long odds in the 2000 Guineas on his reappearance and third in the Dante Stakes on his latest start.

Rafha was not the only daughter of Eljazzi to win a group race. Chiang Mai (by Sadler’s Wells) not only won the Blandford Stakes herself but produced a winner of the same race, Chinese White, who ended her career at five with a Group 1 win in the Pretty Polly Stakes. Her four-year-old son The Trader won a mile and a half handicap at Newmarket last month.

Yet another of Eljazzi’s daughters, the listed-placed winner Fayfa, a sister to Sarawat, established a successful family in the Southern Hemisphere where her descendants include the 2018 New Zealand Oaks runner-up Contessa Vanessa. At the age of twenty-one, Eljazzi was exported down under herself and the first foal she produced in Australia, the dual winner Al Anood (by Danehill), became another of her successful daughters at stud. Her son Pride of Dubai won the Blue Diamond Stakes and Sires’ Produce Stakes and, shuttling between Coolmore’s Australian and Irish bases, has his first runners crop of two-year-olds in Europe this year.

With Invincible Spirit and Kodiac being joined at stud by Pride of Dubai, Gustav Klimt, James Garfield and, in future by Mishriff and Pinatubo, the sire-producing dynasty she has founded seems sure to result in inbreeding to Eljazzi in due course.

Group and listed winners descending from Eljazzi:

Group 1: Chinese White, Invincible Spirit, Mishriff, Nayarra, Pinatubo, Pride of Dubai, Rafha, Uni

Group 2: Contessa Vanessa, Enaad, Gustav Klimt, James Garfield

Group 3: Acts of Grace, Chiang Mai, Master Carpenter, Nkosikazi, Sadian, Whazzis, Marvelously

Listed: Al Aneed, Astor, Cuff, Hillfa, Hertford Dancer, Kilimanjaro, Lava Flow, Massarra, Mount Elbrus, Niki Piki Milo, Orbaan, Rasima, Walk With Attitude, Whazzat