Wednesday morning, it emerged that the G1 Moir S. hero Wild Ruler (Snitzel) had been retired from racing. The 4-year-old son of Snitzel, last seen when unplaced in Saturday’s G1 Oakleigh Plate, will join the formidable and extensive roster of stallions this upcoming spring at Newgate Farm.

Wild Ruler heads to his new career with a stack of credentials behind him, including $2.62 million in prizemoney.

Alongside his 2021 G1 Moir S. victory, the horse won the G2 Roman Consul S., G2 Arrowfield 3YO Sprint and a pair of Listed races in Sydney.

“He’s been a gun,” said Henry Field, speaking to TDN AusNZ. “He won an Inglis Nursery at his first start, and when Kerrin McEvoy got off him that day, I’d never heard Kerrin speak so highly of a horse’s natural talent.”

Through 15 lifetime starts, Wild Ruler won six races and was placed in a further three at Group level behind the likes of Rothfire (Rothesay), September Run (Exceed And Excel) and Nature Strip (Nicconi). He was off the podium only five times in his career.

“In hindsight, there might have been some tell-tale signs that the horse was getting bullish, and we probably saw that last Saturday in the Oakleigh Plate,” Field said. “He’s been showing us that he’s been more focused on the fillies and mares, as opposed to the job at hand.

“But that’s a good thing because I’m probably quite confident then that when he goes to stud, he’ll be a horse that will take to his new job really well.”


A Gypsy’s pedigree

Wild Ruler was picked up for $525,000 by Newgate Farm, in partnership with China Horse Club and WinStar, at the 2019 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale. He was bred by Kia Ora Stud, carrying its ages-old M3 brand, and he was the third foal from the imported American mare Gypsy Robin (USA) (Daaher {Can}).

It wasn’t an obvious Australian pedigree.

Gypsy Robin was a dual Group 2 winner in America, and a half-sister to the Monmouth Park stakes winner Tiger Cat Lilly (USA) (Tale Of The Cat {USA}). The mare was purchased for Australia by Alex Kingston at the 2013 Keeneland November Breeding Sale, Kingston paying US$750,000 (AU$1 million) for her on Kia Ora’s behalf from Three Chimneys Sales.

Gypsy Robin’s first foal for Kia Ora made $250,000 at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale in 2017, selling to James Bester Bloodstock. Later named Caravan, she’s a full sister to Wild Ruler who was placed three times in four lifetime starts before a breeding career back at Kia Ora Stud.

Gypsy Robin’s next foal was a Fastnet Rock colt, Uluru, that made $150,000 when selling to Spicer Thoroughbreds on the Gold Coast the following year. He won three races before retirement, and Wild Ruler came along in 2019, proving his dam’s bestseller to date.

He’s been a strong story for Kia Ora’s strategy of importing Northern Hemisphere lines, something that was prompted by the stud’s Principal, Malaysian-based businessman Ananda Krishnan. In 2019, after Wild Ruler’s withering debut at Randwick, Kia Ora’s then manager, Andrew Perryman, spoke about it.

“American mares have definitely had a bit of success coming into the industry over the years,” Perryman said. “So it’s been a deliberate strategy for us to look to that market to find some promising broodmare prospects for the stud. Mr Krishnan particularly likes international pedigrees and American bloodlines.”

As a result, Gypsy Robin twice visited American Pharoah (USA) after Wild Ruler’s arrival, and the second of those foals, a filly, will be offered as Lot 205 at the upcoming Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale next month.


Russian Revolution 2.0

For Newgate, the arrival of Wild Ruler to the stallion barn is a step towards the new breeding season.

In the next fortnight, the horse will join the farm’s 11 resident sires, stepping into some big shadows of the ilk of CapitalistDeep Field and reigning Champion First Season Sire Extreme Choice.

“For sure, I still get excited about new stallions,” Field said. “Especially one with the credentials to be very important to the farm, and Wild Ruler is certainly a horse that has those credentials. I think he will absolutely be an important stallion for us, and I felt that way about Russian Revolution when he retired, and so he has proved to be.”

In fact, the comparisons to Russian Revolution are significant in this instance.

Both horses were successful, race-going sons of Snitzel, and they competed in similar campaigns. They were brilliant, early juveniles, and share wins apiece in the G2 Roman Consul S.

They both ran in the G1 Coolmore Stud S., with Russian Revolution fourth to Flying Artie and Wild Ruler third to September Run, and they both returned for autumn Group wins in their 3-year-old seasons, Russian Revolution in the G1 The Galaxy and Wild Ruler in the Arrowfield Sprint.

As 4-year-olds, the older stallion won the G1 Oakleigh Plate, while Wild Ruler heads to stud with his determined weight-for-age victory in the Moir last September.

“I think Wild Ruler is Russian Revolution 2.0,” Field said. “He profiles up that way perfectly. He’s by Snitzel, and he shares many of the same physical attributes. At the same point of Russian Revolution being in training, there was no faster trackwork horse in the Snowden stable, and there was no better trackwork horse than Wild Ruler when he was in training.

“Wild Ruler had so much speed that he could beat a horse like Nature Strip in barrier trials, and there was nothing that could go with him in the mornings at Randwick in what is arguably the preeminent stable in Sydney.”


How much?

With such strong, Russian Revolution-like credentials to his name, the obvious question for Wild Ruler is how he will fit into Newgate Farm.

In fact, Field said he will fit very well because Russian Revolution, with his first crop of racing age proving so excellent, will see an obvious service-fee spike this upcoming spring, and Wild Ruler will fill the void at that entry level.

“Russian Revolution has done an extraordinary job with his first crop, and we couldn’t have dreamed he would go so well,” Field said. “From a commercial point of view, he can’t do what he’s doing without a fee spike, and Wild Ruler will go into the farm to cater for the mares that Russian Revolution has been covering over the previous seasons.”

Field said it couldn’t have worked out any better, in his opinion.

“Russian Revolution is showing he is clearly the best first-season sire in the country, and Wild Ruler is coming to us with almost identical credentials,” the studmaster said. “All those people that have supported Russian Revolution for the last four years will now be able to support Wild Ruler at that similar fee.”

Newgate hasn’t confirmed the figure for its new stallion at this stage.

As a guide, Russian Revolution entered stud in 2018 at $55,000 (inc GST), and his fee for the last two seasons was $44,000 (inc GST).

“I’m bullish on him,” Field said. “We’ll support him similarly to how we supported Russian Revolution, and any time you’ve got a horse with this much class, this much consistency and a son of a Champion sire, you’re in with a massive chance to make the grade at stud.”


Story courtesy of TDN AUS NZ

Image credit: Turfstars