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Arrowfield Graduates Honoured in South Africa
Four Group 1-winning Arrowfield graduates were the only Australian-bred finalists for South Africa's 2016/17 Equus Awards, and two of them won their respective categories. Sheikh Hamdan's brilliant colt Mustaaqeem was named Champion 2YO Colt, while Whisky Baron won the Champion Middle Distance title at the awards ceremony in Johannesburg on Tuesday evening. Like his sire Redoute's Choice, Mustaaqeem made only two juvenile appearances that culminated in an outstanding 4-length victory in the Gr1 SA Nursery (1160m) at Turffontein in May. A $1.75 million purchase by Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum's Shadwell Stud Australasia at the 2016 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, Mustaaqeem is the fourth foal to race from the three-time Gr1 winning South African mare National Colour (National Assembly) and is a full brother to stable-mate Rafeef, who won the Gr1 Computaform Sprint on the same program. An $800,000 Easter purchase, Rafeef, now standing at Highlands Stud in South Africa, was a finalist for the Champion Sprinter award won by Carry On Alice. Whisky Baron (Manhattan Rain-Tazkara by Sinndar), a product of the Aga Khan Studs' partnership with Arrowfield, was bought for just $50,000 at the 2014 Easter Sale. Trained by Brett Crawford, Whisky Baron progressed dramatically from three to four winning all five of his starts last season ending with a stunning win in the R5 million Gr1 Sun Met (2000m) at Kenilworth. The fourth Arrowfield Equus Award finalist was 3YO colt Heavenly Blue (Snitzel-Simply Carina by El Prado), who finished third in the Gr1 South African Derby.