[Sarah Whitelaw wrote this interesting article about More Than Ready, the sire of Gimmethegreenlight, and the impact he is having on the Thoroughbred breed globally.]
The influence of Southern Halo son More Than Ready has been well and truly felt globally this year. In South Africa, the Gr1 King’s Bishop Stakes winner has a top class stallion son in the form of Gimmethegreenlight. The latter, whose son Gimme One Night captured the Gr3 Cape Summer Stayers Handicap at Kenilworth on Saturday, has enjoyed a fantastic year in 2018, with Gimmethegreenlight’s eight South African black type winners this year headed by the graded stakes winners Surcharge, Green Plains, National Park, Gimme One Night, and Barahin. To date, Gimmethegreenlight has produced 16 stakes winners from his first three crops – with the tally of his current 3yo crop still likely to increase further – to race and he continues to impress as a high class stallion. With his current 3yos including the likes of Barahin, National Park, Green Haze, unbeaten filly In The Dance and the likes of Gimme A Wave and Stream Ahead, Gimmethegreenlight looks poised to enjoyed a memorable season once again in 2018- 2019. More Than Ready’s success in South Africa is by no means limited to Gimmethegreenlight’s Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate triumph and his ongoing success as a stallion. More Than Ready’s other local representatives included Equus Champion Entisaar and the graded stakes winners Readytogorightnow , Ready To Attack, and Ektifaa, fomer SA Nursery runner up Banaadeer, and Listed KZN Guineas Trial winner Diamond King.
Gimmethegreenlight is not the only son of More Than Ready to have made an impact this year. Widden Stud resident stallion Sebring (one of two sons of More Than Ready to have won the Golden Slipper) has been represented by eight group winners in 2018, with his tally headed by MRC Thousand Guineas winner Amphitrite. The latter is one of five top level winners produced in the tally of 50 plus stakes winners sired by Sebring, with the others headed by Horse Gimmethegreenlight winning the Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate in 2012 Of The Year Dissident. Yet another son of the prolific More Than Ready (statistics show him to have had more than 1740 winners world-wide) is Better Than Ready. The latter, who won a trio of Listed races and ran third in the Gr1 BTC Cup, has made a blistering start with his first 2yos this season making Better Than Ready currently Australia’s Leading First Crop Sire by stakes. More Than Ready’s multiple Gr1 winning son Verrazano is currently one of the top ten Leading First Crop Sires in North America for 2018, while other sire sons of More Than Ready to have sired at least one graded stakes winner previously include Perfectly Ready and Pluck. However, More Than Ready has not only enjoyed considerable success as a sire of sires in 2018 –he also continues to excel as a sire of top class and versatile performers on both dirt and turf. This year, More Than Ready has enjoyed particularly notable success in the Northern Hemisphere, where his seven group/graded stakes winners of 2018 headed by the Gr1 winners Roy H (Santa Anita Sprint Championship, Breeders’ Cup Sprint), Rushing Fall (Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup), Catholic Boy (Belmont Derby, Travers Stakes), Uni (Matriarch Stakes) and Funtastic (United Nations Handicap). More Than Ready is also sire of the promising US 2yo filly Stellar Agent – who ran third in this year’s G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf – a race won previously by More Than Ready daughters Rushing Fall and More Than Real. While Roy H is a multiple Gr1 winning sprinter on dirt, both More Than Ready daughters Uni and Rushing Fall have won their main features on turf, while the remarkable Catholic Boy won the Gr1 Travers on dirt and the Gr1 Belmont Derby on the dirt. Funtastic, who has been retired to Three Chimneys for 2019, scored the biggest victory of his career when he won the Gr1 United Nations Handicap on Monmouth Park’s turf surface.
Remarkably, all five of the sire’s Gr1 winners this year were out of mares by different stallions, with More Than Ready’s recent top level winners having been produced by daughters of Forestry, Elusive Quality, Bernardini, Quiet American (broodmare sire of Bernardini) and Dansili. He has long since been regarded as a mate suitable for mares from the Danehill line, with Uni (out of a Dansili mare) as well as the likes of Sebring, Benicio, Dreamaway, Prized Icon and More Than Sacred as Gr1 winners sired by More Than Ready out of mare descended in male line from Danehill. The remarkably consistent More Than Ready (who will be 22 years old next year) has produced a total of 190 stakes winners in his lengthy shuttling career thus far, with his more than 80 group/graded stakes winners including 28 individual Gr1 winners. In More Than Ready’s first 15 Northern Hemisphere foal crops have all yielded at least one black type winner, while his most lucrative Australian foal crop came about with his first crop yielding no fewer than 12 stakes winners. More Than Ready’s initial Australian foray included the G1 winners Benicio (Victoria Derby) and Carry On Cutie (Champagne Stakes). The evergreen stallion is North America’s third Leading Sire on Turf for 2018, and also ranks as the eighth Leading Sire overall for this year. While More Than Ready’s shuttling days are likely to be drawing to a close, there is no signs of his influence following suit anytime soon!