By Andrew Caulfield
It may be stating the obvious, but stallion success tends to be hereditary. MIZZEN MAST is certainly bred to succeed as a sire, because both his sire Cozzene and grandsire Caro were champion sire
Caro was a remarkably versatile performer during his racing days. Although he stood 16.3 hands, he made a winning debut over 4½ furlongs early in his two-year-old season and trained on to become a classic-winning miler at three and a top-class performer at around 1¼ miles at four.
Caro arrived in Kentucky in 1977, the year he became champion sire in France with the help of winners of the French 1,000 Guineas, Derby and Oaks. Caro’s years in France also produced numerous other champions and he kept up the good work in Kentucky. He sired as many as ten stakes winners in a single crop of 38 named foals and his final tally of 78 stakes winners represented an admirable 13 per cent of his progeny. Caro was also one of those rare stallions with more than 6 per cent Graded/Group winners to his credit.
Although he originally made his name with his turf runners in France, Caro also proved adept at siring top-notch dirt horses, one very good example being Winning Colors, the Kentucky Derby heroine. His Irish-bred grandson In Excess also excelled on dirt and is now a respected sire of dirt performers. Caro is also the broodmare sire of Unbridled’s Song and Maria’s Mon, two highly accomplished dirt performers who have sired major winners on the main track.
As a May foal, Cozzene wasn’t asked to race at two but he did well on the main track at three, winning three of his six starts and failing by only a head to win the Palisades Handicap. However, it is as a turf runner that he will be best remembered, most notably for his victory in the Breeders’ Cup Mile in 1985, which earned him the title of champion grass male.
As a turf horse based in Kentucky, Cozzene had to earn his stripes as a stallion. After starting his career at $20,000, his fee slipped to $10,000 during the hard days of the early ’nineties but he soon proved his worth. After getting Cozzene’s Prince, a Canadian champion, in his first crop, Cozzene hit the jackpot with his second, which had eight stakes winners among its 43 named foals. Leading the way was Environment Friend, who became Cozzene’s first Gr.1 winner when he took the Eclipse Stakes, one of England’s most prestigious prizes. Another colt from this crop, Star of Cozzene, proved to have been aptly named and he finished third in the voting for the Eclipse Award for Turf Male in 1993, after winning the Arlington Million and the Man o’War Stakes.
Cozzene finished seventh on the leading sires’ list in 1993 – a tremendous achievement for a stallion who had stood the 1993 season at $10,000. To prove that there was no fluke about this achievement, Cozzene repeated the feat in 1994, when his French son Tikkanen raided the Turf Classic Invitational and the Breeders’ Cup Turf. Then, in 1996, Cozzene moved to the top of the leading sires’ list thanks to a collection of five Graded winners headed by Alphabet Soup, conqueror of Louis Quatorze and Cigar in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Cozzene has made quite an impact on Breeders’ Cup Day, winning the Mile and siring winners of the Classic and the Turf. He nearly added the Juvenile Fillies to his collection in 2000, when Platinum Tiara failed by only half a length to catch Caressing.
Another very good juvenile by Cozzene was Admire Cozzene, who took the title of champion 2yo colt in Japan in 1998. In typical fashion for a son of Cozzene, Admire Cozzene held his form extremely well and he was again a Gr.1 winner in 2002, when he won the important Yasuda Kinen. More recently, Cozzene was responsible for Rose Decollete, winner of the Japanese Oaks in 2007.
Like Admire Cozzene, MIZZEN MAST was one of the quick-maturing Cozzenes, forward enough to make a winning debut in the August of his juvenile season, when he was also beaten the width of a nostril in the Gr.3 Prix des Chenes.
Fearless Revival, a talented juvenile from Cozzene’s first crop, is now the dam of the highly successful British stallion Pivotal.
By Andrew Caulfield
MIZZEN MAST's family was brought into Juddmonte Farms with the purchase of his dam Kinema, a daughter of the celebrated broodmare Mrs Peterkin.
When Kinema came on the market as a yearling in 1984, this daughter of Graustark cost Juddmonte no less than $2,200,000 and it is easy to understand why. Mrs Peterkin had already been represented by three stakes winners, including the California Oaks winner Whydidju (who, like Kinema, was by one of Ribot’s best sons) and the Kentucky Oaks winner Sweet Alliance. Sweet Alliance had also earned her place in the limelight through her son Shareef Dancer, a Northern Dancer colt which sold for $3,300,000 as a yearling before going on to win the Irish Derby. Mrs Peterkin herself did well when she was mated with Northern Dancer’s son Nijinsky, the result being Dancing Champ, winner of the Gr.2 Massachusetts Handicap.
No fewer than five of Mrs Peterkin’s daughters – Sweet Alliance, Farouche, In The Offing, Minstrelsy and Kinema – have produced a Graded Stakes winner. MIZZEN MAST's third dam, the celebrated broodmare Legendra, was also a highly successful producer, especially of two-year-olds. Her stakes-winning daughter Hasty Doll received an Experimental Free Handicap rating of 111; her filly Rich Tradition – winner of the Selima, Spinaway and Schuylerville Stakes – was rated 113; and her son Sky Clipper, winner of the Sapling Stakes, was rated 116. Her other stakes winner – Mrs Peterkin – also won at two, before going on to win the Gr.3 Chrysanthemum Handicap over a mile and an eighth.
This family continues to make its mark. The uncomparable Horse of the Year and mutliple Gr.1 winner Zenyatta has Mrs Peterkin as her fourth dam.
Kinema’s sire, Graustark, was a prodigious talent who was rated inferior only to the great Buckpasser among the two-year-olds of 1965, when he was unbeaten in three starts. Graustark extended his winning sequence to six early in 1966 and headed the Kentucky Derby betting until he broke a coffin bone in finishing a nose second in the Blue Grass Stakes. Frank Talmadge Phelps, writing in the Bloodstock Breeders’ Review, described this rangy son of Ribot as “the most convincing colt this reporter has ever seen. His bearing, his grace, his smooth and effortless way of moving convinced virtually everyone who saw him, even the most determined skeptics, that he was cut out to be a champion of champions.”
Graustark had such charisma that he was syndicated for a record $2,400,000 – an enormous valuation at that time – and he went on to sire several champions, including Key To The Mint. Graustark’s brother His Majesty also made his mark, notably siring Pleasant Colony as well as the dam of that exceptional stallion Danehill.
By Andrew Caulfield
When James Willoughby, one of the Racing Post’s most respected journalists, was discussing the quality of the 2002 Breeders’ Cup Classic on British television, he pointed out that the race was missing Street Cry and Left Bank and “it’s also missing possibly the best horse in the world, MIZZEN MAST.”
That Willoughby should make this comment nearly nine months after MIZZEN MAST was last in action is an indication of how mightily impressive the Juddmonte colt had been in winning the Gr.2 Strub Stakes over a mile and an eighth at Santa Anita.
The Blood-Horse reported:
"MIZZEN MAST overpowered his Strub opponents, winning by four lengths after breezing toward the lead on the turn for home and drawing off impressively under Kent Desormeaux.
MIZZEN MAST, in tight among horses going into the first turn, settled into a good spot in the run down the backstretch, about five lengths behind the speeding leader. 'I had so much horse going down the backside, I was pulling on him as hard as I could to slow him down,' Desormeaux said.
MIZZEN MAST swung to the outside on the turn for home and moved past the front-runners with ease. Desormeaux applied some pressure down the lane while MIZZEN MASTcompleted the nine furlongs on a fast track in 1:47.25 after a one-mile clocking of 1:34.74. MIZZEN MASTtook .02 seconds off the stakes mark set by Silver Charm in 1998."
This was only the second time that MIZZEN MAST had raced on the main track and it was the second time that he had won in the style of a champion. The ex-French colt had made his dirt debut in the Gr.1 Malibu Stakes at the end of 2001 and his performance was a revelation, as The Blood-Horse reported:
“Amidst calendar-picture weather, a crowd of 27,713 marched forward on Dec. 26 to take in Santa Anita’s seasonal opener, and there, standing front and center yet again, was Bobby Frankel, placing perhaps the final bow on his gift-wrapped year following MIZZEN MAST's clear-cut triumph in the $200,000 Malibu Stakes (Gr. I) in 1:22.13.
‘I’ll give you some terminology I learned in New Orleans this weekend,’ said energized jockey Kent Desormeaux, fresh from a down-home family fiesta. ‘When I asked him to run, he popped a wheelie, he took off so fast.’
There was no word whether MIZZEN MAST left any skidmarks. But his manhandling of a good Malibu field served notice there’s a new force to be reckoned with from the Frankel stable. This one, however, is now a threat on both surfaces.
‘He fell on his head. The ground tore out from underneath him, he broke so hard,’ Desormeaux said. ‘He would have been in front if his feet grabbed the soil.’
Instead, MIZZEN MAST found himself in mid-pack down the backstretch, chasing a hot pace furnished by Brainy, Giant Gentleman, and Mo Mon. When Desormeaux finally found a clear path turning for home, MIZZEN MAST was ready. The strike was quick, and only Giant Gentleman offered any resistance. Still, it wasn’t enough. The final margin was 2 1/2 lengths.”
Dan Farley in the Racing Post continued the story:
“However, the victory was not achieved without some anxious moments,” he wrote.
“‘When he left the gate I was cursing because he stumbled badly,’ said Frankel. ‘I thought he had no chance, then I saw him moving up and Kent was trying to get him in the clear.
‘He ran unbelievable. He’s obviously a good horse.’
Of the switch to dirt, Frankel said: ‘There's nothing you can teach them. His style was good and he trained good on it.’”
MIZZEN MAST had raced nine times previously, exclusively on turf. On three occasions the soft ground prevented him from reproducing his best form, but he was a different proposition when conditions were fast.
He established that he had a very bright future when he made his debut in a newcomers’ race at Deauville in the August of his two-year-old days. Staying on strongly at the end of the mile, he won smoothly from a field which also included Domedriver, the top-notch miler who later defeated Rock of Gibraltar in the Breeders’ Cup Mile.
MIZZEN MAST was immediately stepped up to Group-race company, tackling the Prix des Chenes at Longchamp. He was a little unfortunate to lose by a nose to the more-experienced Equerry, who was to remain unbeaten in his first five starts. The French Racing On Line site recorded that MIZZEN MAST had been in front every stride but the last during a lengthy battle with the winner.
Unfortunately the ground was totally against him when he stepped up to Gr.1 company for his final start at two, but he had done enough on his previous appearances to earn a rating of 111 on the International Classifications – and to show that he was much more precocious than his sire Cozzene.
MIZZEN MAST had to wait until May 2000 before he again had ground conditions in his favour and he showed his appreciation with an impressive victory in the Gr.3 Prix de Guiche over a mile and an eighth. French Racing On Line recorded that he “made all at a lively pace five in front and kept going in the straight without being ever threatened.” His winning margin was 6 lengths.
Trainer Criquette Head-Maarek commented afterwards in the Racing Post: “It’s incredible how the ground can play such a role with this horse. He hates it when it’s heavy."
“MIZZEN MAST would have been even better on a firmer surface. It was only good this afternoon.”
She added, “MIZZEN MAST was probably at his maximum distance today. The Prix Jean Prat might come a little soon, but we will definitely be looking at the Grand Prix de Paris.”
Jockey Olivier Doleuze said, “He just loves galloping and we have always thought a lot of him.”
MIZZEN MAST attempted similar tactics next time out in the Gr.1 Grand Prix de Paris over 1¼ miles. Unfortunately for him, his opponents included the high-class Chichicastenango, who had proven his liking for distances of 1¼ miles or more by defeating the future classic winners Anabaa Blue and Milan in the Gr.1 Prix Lupin and by finishing a close second in the French Derby. MIZZEN MAST set up a clear lead but Chichicastenango’s stamina came into play in the last furlong and the Juddmonte colt went down honorably by 1½ lengths over a distance which was probably beyond his best.
MIZZEN MAST also demonstrated his turf-course talents after his transfer to Bobby Frankel. The firm track at Hollywood Park was ideal when MIZZEN MAST took on Momentum, another very talented import from Europe, in the Bien Bien Stakes over a mile. Quickening well in the stretch, he won by more than 3 lengths from Momentum, who won the Gr.3 Native Diver Handicap next time out.
MIZZEN MAST was evidently an even better horse in his native America than he had been in France, perhaps because he was ridden differently. In gaining his three Californian stakes victories, he was ridden much more patiently and his rider was rewarded with an impressive burst of acceleration. MIZZEN MAST had the speed to win at Gr.1 level over 7 furlongs, this speed being combined with the strength to win going away over 1 1/8 miles. His career was halted just as he appeared to be on the verge of establishing himself as one of the stars of American dirt racing.
By Ercel Ellis
MIZZEN MAST had another productive year in 2016. He was the sire of 18 blacktype runners - ten of them stakes winners, six of them graded stakes winners, He sired his eighth Gr.1 winner. He sired 19 two year old winners, five of which earned black type among them a stakes winner in Saratoga.
Giant Treasure, a winner in England, ventured to Hong Kong were he won the Gr.1 Stewards' Cup following a close second in the Gr.1 Hong Kong Mile. At year's end he had compiled earnings of $2,061,620. He is the eighth Gr.1 winner by MIZZEN MAST, following Mizdirection (twice the winner of the Gr.1 Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint and earner of $1,719,621), Flotilla (a Champion Two Year Old Filly in France and Gr.1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf and Gr.1 1000 French Guineas winner for total earnings over $1 million), Mast Track (winner of over $928,000), Ultimate Eagle (winner of more than $547,000), Midships (earner of right at $528,000), Full Mast (Gr.1 winner at two in France and of nearly $458,000, also stakes placed in North America last year), and Gr.1 winner Lideris.
MIZZEN MAST's stakes winners from 2016 not previously mentioned include Stonetastic, Paulina's Love, Rose Brier, Mizz Money, Green Mask, One Mean Man, Impulsive, Iron Mizz, and Judge Carr.
Stonetastic was bred by Machmer Hall, Carrie and Craig Brogden, and sold as a yearling at Keeneland for $77,000. In 2016 she won the Gr.2 Inside Information Stakes and the Miami Shores Handicap at Gulfstream, The Regret at Monmouth, the Pumpkin Pie at Belmont, and placed in three additional stakes, all Graded, including a second in the Gr.1 Humana Distaff Stakes at Churchill, amassing earning of $856,062.
Paulina's Love won the Gr.2 Buena Vista Stakes at Santa Anita following a second in the 2015 running of the Gr.3 Autumn Miss Stakes at Santa Anita and a third that same year in the Gr.2 San Clemente Handicap at Del Mar. Bred by Jason Hall, she has earned $304,990 and was sold last fall in the Fasig-Tipton November Sale for $425,000.
Rose Brier was never out of the money in his seven starts during the year. He won the Henry S. Clark Stakes at Laurel (setting a new course record one mile in 1:33), the Edward P. Evans Stakes at Pimlico, Laurel's Bert Allen Stakes for the third consecutive year, and crossed the line first in the Tropical Turf Handicap Gr.2 at Gulfstream Park West. He also placed in two other stakes during the year including the Gr.3 Red Bank at Monmouth. Bred by William Backer and sold as a yearling at Keeneland for $67,000, Rose Brier has earned $496,686 as of the end of 2016.
Green Mask won the Bonapaw Stakes at the Fair Grounds on December 17th and placed in four other stakes during the year, Woodbine's Gr.2 Highlander, the Elusive Quality at Belmont, the Troy Stakes at Saratoga, and the Belmont Turf Sprint Invitational. Green Mask was bred by D.J. Stable and sold at the OBS April Sale for $150,000. At the end of 2016 his earnings were over $600,000.
Mizz Money won Pimlico's Gr.3 Gallorette Handicap, the New Orleans Ladies Stakes, and placed in three other stakes during the year, all three at the Fair Grounds. Winner of the Gr.3 Pucker Up Stakes at Arlington and the Allen La Combe Memorial in 2015, she has earned $346,181 while racing for her breeders, Bernard Flint and Ron Hillerich.
One Mean Man is a full brother to Mizz Money, and he also carried the silks of his breeders. He won five stakes during 2016 headed by the Gr.3 American Derby at Arlington Park. He won the Jefferson Cup at Churchill Downs, shipped in to take the $200,000 Mystic Lake Derby at Canterbury, opened the year with a score in the Keith Gee Memorial at the Fair Grounds, and closed the year with a victory in the Woodchopper Stakes on December 31st at Fair Grounds. He also ran second in the Gr.3 Arlington Classic, second in the Black Gold Stakes at the Fair Grounds, and was a competitive fourth, beaten a length and a half, in the Gr.1 Secretariat Stakes. One Mean Man has earned $464,597.
Iron Mizz, one of MIZZEN MAST's 19 two year old winners, was bred by Stonewall Farm. She broke her maiden in her second start at Belmont, moved to Monmouth Park and finished second in the Colleen Stakes, then came back to New York to win the Seeking the Ante Stakes at Saratoga followed by a third in the Joseph A. Gimma Stakes at Belmont. She earned $198,084 for owner and breeder Barry Schwartz.
Judge Carr, a fierce competitor with 54 starts to his name, won the Caixa Electrica Handicap. He was a $75,000 two year old at the Barretts March Sale.
MIZZEN MAST's other stakes placed two year olds were Bird's Eye View, Rum Go, Jazz Lady, and Mizz Quoted. Bird's Eye View won his second start at Monmouth, moved to Saratoga and ran third in the Gr.2 With Anticipation Stakes, then to Keeneland to finish a competitive third in a field of 14 in the Gr.3 Bourbon Stakes. He was bred by Cloyce C. Clark and Jay Goodwin, and he's a $50,000 graduate of the OBS March Sale.
Rum Go was bred by Elisabeth Alexander and races for her breeder. She was a winner in her second start at Delaware then in her third and final start of 2016 finished third in a field of 12 in Keeneland Jessamine Stakes.
Jazz Lady won her career debut in a Maiden Special at Churchill Downs. Two races later, in her lone start on grass, she was second in the $100,000 Bolton Landing Stakes at Saratoga. Jazz Lady was bred by Emilie J. Barras Farms Stable and sold for $85,000 at the OBS April Sale.
Mizz Quoted was bred in Ohio by R. Gorham and Mast Thoroughbreds and races for Mast Thoroughbreds. She was never out of the money in seven starts, and was second in the John W. Galbreath Stakes.
Older stakes placed runners of 2016 include Full Mast, Eden Prairie, Moyo Honey, and Second Mate. Gr.1 winner Full Mast ran third in the Lure Stakes at Saratoga. Eden Prairie finished second in the Mardi Gras Stakes at the Fair Grounds (earlier in her career she won four stakes at the Fair Grounds and placed in two Graded stakes at Keeneland). Moyo Honey ran third in the Gr.2 Bayakoa Handicap at Del Mar and Second Mate was second in the Stanton Stakes at Delaware Park and third in the Sophomore Turf Stakes at Tampa Bay.
MIZZEN MAST's pedigree is devoid of Bold Ruler, Mr. Prospector, and Northern Dancer thus offering breeders an outcross to most American mares. The son of champion sire Cozzene has sired Gr.1 winners at distances from six to ten furlongs, Gr.1 winners on turf and dirt, the winners of three Breeders' Cup races, a champion two year old, and in fact is a superb sire of two year olds, in general. He is, by any measure, one of the most versatile sires at stud in North America.