Australian Breeding: Flower Bowl Legacy Lives On
By Kristen Manning
The Gr.2 Theo Marks Stakes, the Gr.3 Sheraco Stakes and the Gr.2 Run To The Rose – three features contested at Rosehill last Saturday, won by horses – Deploy, Ravi and Menari – with genes in common.
And not just those prepotent Danehill genes; Deploy being by Fastnet Rock whilst Ravi is by Redoute’s Choice and Menari by that champion stallion’s in-form son Snitzel.
All three horses are line-bred to the same mare, the wonderful Flower Bowl.
Foaled in 1952 the daughter of one of the greatest unraced stallions of all time in Alibhai, Flower Bowl won seven of her 32 starts, at her best as she matured, getting up to her favoured distances of ten furlongs (2000m) and beyond.
The Gr.1 Delaware Handicap was a career highlight for Flower Bowl, at the time that race being the richest available for American mares.
The Gr.1 Ladies Handicap is also on Flower Bowl’s CV but it was a broodmare that she really excelled, so much so that her feats are honoured by the annual running of the Gr.1 Flower Bowl Invitational Stakes at Belmont.
An immediate success at stud, Flower Bowl produced as her first foal the four times Gr.1 winner Bowl Of Flowers – US Hall Of Fame member, the champion of her age and gender at two and three.
Unfortunately Flower Bowl endured her share of reproductive issues but after several misses she was able to, in 1963, foal the Gr.3 winner Graustark.
A couple of lesser performers followed but in 1968 she made her final contribution by producing the Gr.2 winner His Majesty. Sadly she hemorrhaged the morning after and passed away, buried in the Darby Dan Farm equine cemetery (also home to the legendary Ribot).
Flower Bowl’s name lives on through a number of descendants but His Majesty and Graustark are her most prolific. The former was US Champion Sire of 1962, represented by 53 stakes winners whilst Graustark also made his mark with 52 stakes winners.
Combining His Majesty and Graustark is the most common way to line-breed to Flower Bowl and that is how Ravi is bred… His Majesty appearing as dam sire of Danehill and Graustark as the sire of Prove Out, second dam sire of Ravi’s dam sire Kingmambo.
Another method is via Whiskey Road, Bowl Of Flowers’ son who enjoyed success at stud in Australia as the sire of 26 stakes winners including the W.S Cox Plate winning globetrotter Strawberry Road .
Whilst Deploy and Menari carry His Majesty through Danehill, they have Whiskey Road in their dam lines – Deploy’s second dam sire being Strawberry Road whilst Menari’s second dam sire is Whiskey Road.
Kristen Manning is a freelance racing writer and pedigree analyst based in Melbourne. A keen owner/breeder who loves every aspect of thoroughbred horse racing, she has written two books focusing on the deeds of Fields Of Omagh and Prince Of Penzance.