Winning doesn’t equal stud success

Caption: Trip To Eden was a winner and later became a mother to a successful crop of dogs.    


EMAILS come thick and fast to me at Pedigrees By Design, most looking for help with future matings.

But one that stood apart recently concerned the former Group 1 Paws Of Thunder winner Suave Fella (Modern Assassin-Jessie Shiraz by Black Shiraz).

He’d also won the G2 Gosford Cup and was a finalist in the G1 Topgun as well as breaking a track record at Warrnambool.

The email asked why wasn’t this dog given more opportunities at stud.

He’d won 22 of 69 starts and earned $96,000 in days when stakes earnings were much lower than today. He earned a stud stint.

He did okay with his best, Key To Eden, winning 16 and earning $72,000. She won the G3 Sydney Cup and then became the dam of G1 Super Stayers and G1 Association Cup winner Trip To Eden (by Solve The Puzzle).

Trip to Eden then became the mother of Paradiso Lass (2nd G1 Maturity) by My Bro Fabio. And, Paradiso Lass is the mother of multiple city winner Westar Aileen (by Mepunga Blazer).

So, where are we headed with all these facts and figures?

It’s all about very good race dogs being given little or no chance of stud success mainly through lack of opportunities.

Some will push through such negativity and become a success. Champion sire Credibility is a perfect example.

Recently, Bernardo is punching above his weight as a stud dog.

Greyhound breeders are an amazing lot. They see only the glamour sires when it comes time to mate bitches. If a race dog had no “boom” on him on the track, he will struggle to attract enough matings to achieve greatness.

The thoroughbred industry has many examples of great sires overcoming what might have been perceived as very moderate race careers.

Three examples in recent times are I Am Invincible, Not A Single Doubt and Written Tycoon.

These horses have become household names for their deeds at stud more so than for their racetrack success.

Having won more than 400 stakes races between them, it’s no wonder they have become three of the biggest pin-up boys in Australian breeding.

But what did they do on the racetrack?

While you will need a pretty penny to secure one of their progeny these days, they weren’t the most sought after yearlings themselves.

And an average first season service fee of $11,000 between them – there were some bargains for some savvy breeders.


I AM INVINCIBLE: 13 starts, 5 wins, $270,050

A modest $62,500 yearling purchase, the colt by Invincible Spirit began his racing career with Toby Edmonds with just about as little fanfare as his sale price.

Starting at $14, he got under punters’ guards with a five-length debut win at Warwick Farm. It would take him a year and a half to find the winner’s stall next and after he was switched to the Hawkes stable, where he again scored at Warwick Farm.

Peter Morgan found the knack to the stallion as his third trainer, with a second in the G1 Goodwood Handicap behind Takeover Target while also registering stakes wins in the G3 McKay Stakes and the Listed Monash Stakes.

I Am Invincible stood his first season at stud in 2010 with a service fee of $11,000. He now stands for $220,000.


NOT A SINGLE DOUBT: 10 starts, 4 wins, $392,000

This is one of the earlier progeny sold by Arrowfield Stud of the great Redoute’s Choice.

Graeme Rogerson had to go to $210,000 in 2003 to acquire what would turn out to be Not A Single Doubt. Despite a female line of only moderate success, Rogerson’s hunch on the colt was right after winning his first three starts and finishing second to Dance Hero in the 2004 Magic Millions.

While he would return as a three-year-old under Tony Vasil to win the Zedative Stakes, that listed win would remain the best of his career with three attempts at G1 level best resulting in a sixth in the Orr Stakes.

Not A Single Doubt stood his first season at stud in 2005 with a service fee of $13,750. Retired from stud duties in 2020 due to a pulmonary disease, he was standing at a career high of $110,000 which saw him produce the likes of Extreme Choice, Farnan, Miracles of Life and Samaready.

Ciaron Maher and David Eustace paid $1.7 million for a son of Not a Single Doubt at the Gold Coast Magic Millions Sale in January.


WRITTEN TYCOON: 11 starts, 2 wins, $289,325

Grahame Begg has always had an eye for a yearling and that was on show in 2004 when he paid $50,000 for the son of Iglesia from a dam who had won a race at Eagle Farm.

Like I Am Invincible and Not A Single doubt, Written Tycoon showed his talent early to win on debut at Randwick and would go on to reach the heights of G2 success by winning the Todman Stakes before finishing 11th in the Golden Slipper.

Later transferred to John O’Shea, Written Tycoon would struggle to live up to the early hype and would not win in his subsequent seven starts, with a second at G3 level his best result.

Written Tycoon has produced 42 stakes winners and stands for a fee of $165,000.

For his first two seasons he stood for $8250 before dropping to as low as $6600 in 2010.

No Suave Fella did not overcome his lack of opportunities at stud to become a legend.

 Credibility did.

Not every stud dog retires with race careers like Brett Lee, Fernando Bale and the likes. Many with that sort of ability fail at stud.

Which makes greyhound breeding all the more interesting.




For free and confidential support call 1800 858 858 or visit

Social Media

Chase News Subscribe (it's free!)
Scroll to Top