Gamble on old ties pays off with Falmouth winner Prosperous Voyage | Bloodstock News

Edward Whitaker (

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Prosperous Voyage and Rob Hornby gain revenge on Inspiral in the Falmouth Stakes

Prosperous Voyage and Rob Hornby gain revenge on Inspiral in the Falmouth Stakes

Edward Whitaker (

By Tom Peacock

Prosperous Voyage became the latest in a line of three-year-old fillies to emerge a considerably more valuable thoroughbred than when first found at the sales in landing Friday’s Tattersalls Falmouth Stakes.

A daughter of Zoffany bred in a partnership between Lynch Bages and Camas Park Stud, she was a £65,000 purchase from the 2020 Goffs Orby Sale staged at Doncaster and joins the likes of the 1,000 Guineas winner Cachet and Oaks runner-up Emily Upjohn in being top-level performers bought for five figures at public auction.

Grant Pritchard-Gordon, who signed for the half-sister to a few minor winners under the Badgers Bloodstock operation he runs with his son Tom, explained that it was when he explored further back on her page that he saw an opportunity.

“What really piqued my interest is that when you look, she’s got Juddmonte families coursing through her blood,” said the man who was a long-serving racing manager for the late Khalid Abdullah’s operation.

“I knew the pedigree extremely well as it’s been very much part of my life for the past 42 years.”

Prosperous Voyage’s third dam is the Sir Ivor mare Monroe, winner of the 1980 Ballyogan Stakes for Robert Sangster and Vincent O’Brien. A sibling of the smart Gielgud and Malinowski and from the close family of El Gran Senor, she was to prove a key member of the Juddmonte broodmare band.

Laura Green

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Grant and Tom Pritchard-Gordon buy horses under the Badgers Bloodstock banner

Grant and Tom Pritchard-Gordon buy horses under the Badgers Bloodstock banner

Laura Green

“She was bought in training and transferred to Jeremy Tree but on the journey from Ballydoyle to Beckhampton she broke out into the most terrible ringworm and never actually got to run,” recalled Pritchard-Gordon.

“It took a bit of time for her to make her mark on the stud; the first bit of interest that came along was Masterclass, by The Minstrel [second in the Grand Criterium]then Jeremy had a filly called Didicoy, who had a bit of a family, and there was [European champion two-year-old] Xaar.”

Pritchard-Gordon remembers part of the family having another flush of prosperity as Didicoy is the ancestress of St Leger winner Logician and great-granddam of the top-class Juddmonte products Bated Breath and Cityscape, but he had to take a more rounded view when proposing Prosperous Voyage.

“One of my fascinations in the pedigree world is how families suddenly go cold,” he said. “When I bought her I said to her new owners of her, a delightful couple of people called Peter Stokes and Scott Krase, that it was from a particular branch of the Juddmonte family that had gone quiet.

“A lot of the Monroe family hasn’t – the Logician, Bated Breath, Cityscape is fine – but through [Prosperous Voyage’s granddam] Say it had.

“We took a bit of a gamble, it’s all gut feeling, but knowing the family I know how well it’s done when Danehill has crossed it. Going through Danehill, Dansili and Danzig, they’ve brought out the best of that family. You have the likes of Bated Breath, Permit in Australia, every time it goes back to Danehill it has come up with the goods.

“She was also a lovely big rangy filly, a great walker and she comes from a great farm and two great breeders in Timmy Hyde and Paul Shanahan, so £65,000 in my mind was a reasonable gamble.”

Prosperous Voyage went quickly through the ranks, winning a maiden at Epsom and placing behind not only Mise En Scene in the Prestige Stakes but taking a second in a running duel with Inspiral in the May Hill Stakes.

Under new ownership in the Ralph Beckett stable, she would finish second to that same rival in the Fillies’ Mile and a neck behind Cachet in the Guineas before finally exacting revenge upon the long odds-on Inspiral on the July course

“I put my hands up, I said to Peter and Scott that she was worth quite a lot of money,” the agent explained. “Ralph came to us and said he’d got Marc Chan and Andrew Rosen who would be interested in buying her, and they offered a price which valued her as a stakes winner.

“She wasn’t actually a stakes winner until Friday but I do genuinely feel for Peter and Scott, they sold a filly for a very good price but she’s worth considerably more now.”

Pritchard-Gordon hopes that the pair will gain their due compensation on the racecourse. Crazyland, who was third in last year’s Dick Poole Stakes, is returning to Europe after a brief stint in the United States, while among their three two-year-olds in training with Beckett is another Zoffany named Mildyjama, about whom there seems to be some optimism.

Edward Whittaker

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Prosperous Voyage (left) began life racing for Peter Stokes and Scott Krase

Prosperous Voyage (left) began life racing for Peter Stokes and Scott Krase

Edward Whittaker

“They’re very sporting owners who have been in the business a long time,” said Pritchard-Gordon. “It was a joint decision, we looked at one side and the other.”

He is still satisfied at having added another Group 1 purchase to his list and has enjoyed the associated trip down memory lane.

“It’s fascinating,” he says. “Prince Khalid was an intuition man, he felt Xaar was n’t going to suit his program and he sold him, he felt Danehill would n’t, but luckily he kept breeding rights to him.

“I’ve always felt if you buy from very good breeders like Juddmonte, the Aga Khan, with families that are a little quiet, you get them into new farms, fresh blood, fresh management, fresh impetus, it’s amazing how they come to life again.

“It’s the same sort of thing with the champion two-year-old of last year, Native Trail. He’s a Juddmonte horse, it had gone quiet and suddenly comes to life.”

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