Royal Flight - a pedigree study


The Riverton Racing Club's Francolin Stakes on Easter Saturday was a triumph for a
descendant of Francolin. Royal Flight is by Danzighill - Capital Flight, by Noble Bijou -
Flight Judge (Aus), by The Judge (Aus) - Jane Flight, by Mellay - Atlantic Flight, by
Agricola - Antarctic Flight, by Neptune - Special Flight, by Salmagundi - Francolin.

Royal Flight has started 25 times for 8 wins, 3 seconds, 5 thirds and 2 fourths for $113,263
in prize money. Her dam Capital Flight is in foal to first season sire Raise The Flag at
White Robe Lodge Stud, Mosgiel.

Royal Flight belongs to the Special Flight branch of the Francolin family which includes
Our Flight (Imperial Guard - Jane Flight) 9 wins, CJC NZ One Thousand Guineas, Group 1,
and ARC New Zealand Derby, Group 1, and Alibhai (Noble Bijou - Gem Flight) 7 wins,
STC Rosehill Guineas, Rawson Stakes, H.E. Tancred Stakes and VATC Caulfield Stakes,
all Group 1 events.

Special Flight (Salmagundi - Francolin) 8 wins, was the dam of Ocean Flight (Neptune).
1st. WRC Hutt Handicap, Southland Guineas, Riverton RC Fiord Handicap, 2nd. CJC
Winter Cup, Canterbury Cup, WRC Thompson Handicap, 3rd. WRC Watkins Handicap.

In 1935 at a horse sale in Dunedin, Mr.D.M. Tweedie, of Riverton, purchased Francolin
with a filly foal by Lord Warden (later named Ortyx) at foot for 45 pounds, which became
known as the Francolin or "Flight" dynastry, and 75 years later the success continues
world-wide for this illustrious family.

It has always been acknowledged that the Eulogy family is No. 1 in the New Zealand
Stud Book, followed by the Francolin family. Latest Group 1 winner for Eulogy is
Barinka (Racing Te Aroha 2011 NZ Thoroughbred Breeders' Stakes) and for Francolin,
So You Think (2010 VRC L.K.S. Mackinnon Stakes).

At present Francolin is the descendant of 22 individual Group 1 winners, who have
won 40 Group 1 races, headed by Petrava and So You Think with 5 Group 1 wins apiece.
The Winning Flight branch has been the most successful with 10 individual Group 1
winners of 16 Group 1 races, which includes Black Piranha and So You Think.

A selection of winners from the family throughout New Zealand and Australia include -
(North Island) Vibeke, Loughanure, ARC Ellerslie Sires Produce Stakes, Our Flight, New
Zealand Derby, Carson's Cash, Easter Handicap, Ajasco, Silver Liner, Railway Handicap;
Jazzac, Avondale JC Concorde Handicap; Triassic, Waikato RC Sir Tristram Fillies Classic;
Pegs Pride, Bay Of Plenty RC Stars Travel Stakes; Suleiman, Hawke's Bay Cup;
Loughanure, Our Flight, WRC Wellington Guineas, Dixie, Peg's Pride, Our Flight,
Desert Gold Stakes, Freequent, NZ St Leger Stakes.

(South Island) Our Flight, CJC One Thousand Guineas, Jazz, New Zealand Derby, Royal
Flight, Winter Cup; Carpenter, DJC Dunedin Cup, Courier Flight, White Robe Lodge Stakes,
Castle Flight, James Hazlett Gold Cup, Pakistan Flight, Courier Flight (Dead-Heat),
James Hazlett Stakes; In Flight, Invercargill Gold Cup; Royal Flight (Dead-Heat),
Super Flight, Strike Flight, Riverton Cup.

(Australia) Black Piranha, QTC Stradbroke Handicap (twice), Court Ruler, Queensland Derby;
Show Ego, Queensland Oaks, VRC Oaks, WA Australian Oaks; Sound Action, STC Ranvet
Stakes, SA Australasian Oaks; Alibhai, H.E. Tancred Stakes, Hula Flight, Dress Circle, Victory
Smile, AJC Metropolitan Handicap; So You Think, MVRC W.S. Cox Plate (twice); Turf Ruler,
VATC Oakleigh Plate; Ark Regal, VATC Futurity Stakes; Philomel, Perth Cup.

The taproot mare of the family is Juliet (GB) 1851, dam of Sylvia winner of the 1867 VRC
Oaks, who became the dam of Martini-Henry, the first New Zealand bred winner of the 1883
Melbourne Cup. At his first start Martini-Henry won the VRC Derby, and three days later as
favourite scored by 1 1/2 lengths in the Melbourne Cup. Both wins were recorded in race
record time.

- Michael Sheridan


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