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Sea the Stars

Sea The Stars
Sire Cape Cross
Dam Urban Sea
Grandsire Green Desert
Damsire Miswaki
Gender Colt
Foaled 2006
Country Ireland
Color Bay
Breeder Sunderland Holdings Ltd
Owner Christopher Tsui
Trainer John Oxx
Record 9: 8-0-0
Earnings £4,416,708
Sea The Stars is a thoroughbred racehorse out of Urban Sea by Cape Cross. He was born around 2006 in Ireland, and was bred by Sunderland Holdings Ltd.
Major wins

Beresford Stakes (2008)
Eclipse Stakes (2009)
International Stakes (2009)
Irish Champion Stakes (2009)

British Classic Race wins:
2,000 Guineas (2009)
Epsom Derby (2009)

French Classic Race wins:
Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (2009)
European Champion 3-Y-O Colt (2009)
European Horse of the Year (2009)
AHT Duralock Racing Award (2009)
ROA Champion 3-Y-O Colt (2009)
ROA Horse of the Year (2009)
HRI Horse of the Year (2009)
ITBA Champion 3-Y-O Colt (2009)
#1 - World Thoroughbred Racehorse Rankings (2009)
Timeform rating: 140
Horse (Equus ferus caballus)

Sea The Stars (foaled 2006 in Ireland) is a champion Irish Thoroughbred colt racehorse. He is best known for winning the 2,000 Guineas, the Epsom Derby, the Eclipse Stakes, - the first colt to accomplish this treble since 1989 champion Nashwan - the International Stakes, the Irish Champion Stakes, and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.

Bred by Sunderland Holdings Ltd, the breeding operation of the Tsui family, he is a half brother to Epsom Derby winner Galileo, both being sons of Arc winner Urban Sea.


2 Year Old Racing Career

Sea The Stars started his racing career at the Curragh in July 2008. Still very green and boxed in in the final furlong, he finished a close fourth behind subsequent US Grade 1 winner Driving Snow.

He won his second race easily at Leopardstown by 2 1/2 lengths, taking the lead 2 furlongs out and was never threatened.

In the last race of his 2 year old campaign, Sea The Stars won the Group 2 2008 Beresford Stakes at the Curragh by 1/2 length from stablemate Mourayan and Ballydoyle's Masterofthehorse. This turned out to be his closest race.

3 Year Old Racing Career

Sea The Stars would complete a perfect 3 year old campaign, winning 6 Group 1 races in 6 months, including 2 English Classic races and 1 French Classic race. His 3 year old record is described by many as the best of modern thoroughbred racing.

2000 Guineas

Rested over the winter, John Oxx entered him into the 2009 2,000 Guineas without a prep race. Despite this, he started 8-1 in the betting behind the Craven Stakes winner Delegator (3/1f). There were concerns about his preparations because of a setback on the 17th of March due to a viral infection and a temperature. He rested for 2 weeks, which hampered his preparation for the Guineas. However John Oxx still wanted to give him his chance at a mile and a good workout the week prior to the race encouraged Oxx to declare him.

Travelling well throughout the race, he pulled clear of the field in the final furlong winning by 1 length from the favourite, with Gan Amhras ¾ of a length behind in third.[1] Michael Kinane, winning his fourth 2,000 Guineas, later commented: "He's a classy horse and we've waited for him all winter. He's been crying out for this ground."

Epsom Derby

Despite doubts about his stamina and a strong field, notably from Ballydoyle who fielded 6 of the 12 runners, Sea The Stars won the 2009 Epsom Derby beating the favourite Fame and Glory, and Masterofthehorse (making it a 1-2-3 to Ireland). Racing prominently behind the pacemakers, Sea The Stars traveled very well and slowly reeled in the leader 3 furlongs out, taking the lead with 1 1/2 furlongs to go and kept the lead all the way to the finish. Mick Kinane (winning his 3rd derby two weeks shy of his 50th birthday) said of the winner "I was going so easy all the way, it was as if we were going in slow motion."[2]

Eclipse Stakes

Sea the Stars was scratched from the 2009 Irish Derby due to the track conditions,[3] but went on to win the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park a week later. Always travelling well, he overtook the fading pacemakers early down the straight, forcing Kinane to commit earlier than expected. Rip Van Winkle came with a strong challenge 2 furlongs out, but Sea The Stars fought him off with a surge of acceleration, winning readily by 1 1/2 lengths, with 2008 Breeders' Cup Turf winner Conduit 5 lengths behind in third.[4]

International Stakes

Sea The Stars at York

In August 2009, Sea the Stars won the Juddmonte International Stakes at York. Scaring off most of the opposition, only 4 horses were left in the race, 3 of them from Ballydoyle. Mastercraftsman, winner of 4 Group 1s including the Irish 2000 Guineas and the St. James's Palace Stakes at Ascot, was the main opposition with the 2 others acting as pacemakers. Tracking Mastercraftsman throughout the race, Kinane boldly followed Johnny Murtagh through a narrowing gap created by the 2 pacemakers at the beginning of the straight. Sea The Stars powered past Mastercraftsman in the last furlong, taking the Group 1 race by a length, breaking the track record by 0.8 seconds in doing so.[5]

Irish Champion Stakes

Next up was the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown in September 2009. His first appearance in front of his home crowd since 2008, the race was billed as a clash between him and Fame and Glory, who since finishing 2nd in the Epsom Derby won the Irish Derby by 5 lengths and was rested for 2 months. The race was highly anticipated as the rematch during the Irish Derby was postponed due to ground conditions. Turning into the straight, Johnny Murtagh on board of Fame and Glory took the initiative and got 1st run on Sea The Stars. A patient Kinane stayed on Murtagh's heels and with a powerful burst of speed went easily past Fame and Glory 2 furlongs out to win by 2 1/2 lengths. Mastercraftsman, also in the race, finished 3rd another 2 1/2 lengths behind Fame and Glory. After his win in the Irish Champion Stakes, Sea the Stars was awarded a lofty 140 Timeform Rating.[6]

Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe

On October 4, 2009, 6 months since his win in the 2000 Guineas, Sea The Stars lined up as the odds-on favourite for Europe's most prestigious All-aged race, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe in France. A large field of 19 runners along with a long and difficult season were major concerns, many thinking this was one race too far. The race featured 9 other Group 1 winners, including the unbeaten French filly Stacelita, the Yorkshire Oaks and Pretty Polly Stakes winner Dar Re Mi, the Irish Derby winner Fame and Glory, the 2008 St Leger Stakes, 2008 Breeders' Cup Turf and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes winner Conduit, the Prince of Wales's Stakes winner Vision d'Etat, the Grand Prix de Paris and Prix Niel winner Cavalryman and the 2 times Arc runner up Youmzain. Quick out of the gates, Sea The Stars pulled very hard for the first couple of furlongs, got bumped and dropped back down the field. Kinane was able to settle him and raced on in 8th and 9th position throughout the race. Turning into the straight, Sea The Stars stayed on the rail and seemed boxed in and in trouble. As the principals started to pick up Kinane was able to find a gap and challenged Stacelita alongside Dar Re Mi. Sea The Stars then unleashed his devastating turn of foot and in a matter of strides left the field in his wake and led by 3 lengths half a furlong out, winning the race by 2 lengths while eased down. He thus became the only horse to have won the 2,000 Guineas, Epsom Derby, and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe in the same year.[7]

Sea the Stars swept the major awards across Europe, including Champion 3 Year Old and Horse of the Year at the Cartier Racing Awards, Champion 3 Year Old and Horse of the Year at the Racehorse Owners Association Awards and Horse of the Year at the Irish Horse Racing Awards.[8]

Stud career

His retirement was announced on 13 October 2009 by trainer John Oxx.[9][10]

On October 27, 2009 it was announced that Sea The Stars will stand stud at the Aga Khan's Gilltown Stud in Ireland. The 2008 Prix De l'Arc de Triomphe winner Zarkava is booked to be covered by him in 2010.[11]

File:Sts york.jpg
Sea The Stars
On March 6, 2010. It was announced that Sea The Stars has his first five mares checked in foal along those is the dam Zarkasha of the unbeaten brillant turf filly Zarkava. The other notable

mares includes Bordighera the dam of the brilliant but late turf miler George Washington, the 2009 winner of the Darley Prix Jean Romanet (Fr-I) Alpine Rose, Grandera who won 3 Group 1 races, Centreofattention, a full sister to Irish Group 1 winner Holy Roman Emperor, Seward’s Folly, the dam of Group 2 winner Sayif.

He currently stands for 85,000 Euros.


Sea The Stars is by the top class European Miler Cape Cross, winner of the Lockinge Stakes, Celebration Mile and Queen Anne Stakes in the UK. Since retiring to stud, he has sired the winners of 19 Group 1 races worldwide, including Ouija Board (winner of Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (twice) and Epsom Oaks ). He currently stands at the Kildangan Stud in Ireland.

Urban Sea, Sea the Stars' dam, was the winner of France's most prestigious race, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe. She is also one of the top broodmares of her generation. Sea The Stars is half brother to a number of stakes and group winners including: Galileo (1998 colt by Sadler's Wells), winner of Epsom Derby, Irish Derby and the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes and voted European Champion Three-Year-Old; Black Sam Bellamy (2000 colt by Sadler's Wells ), winner of the Gran Premio del Jockey Club and Tattersalls Gold Cup; All Too Beautiful (2001 filly by Sadler's Wells), second in the Oaks; and, My Typhoon (2002 filly by Giant's Causeway), winner of Diana Handicap.

Pedigree of Sea The Stars
Cape Cross
Green Desert Danzig Northern Dancer
Pas De Nom
Foreign Courier Sir Ivor
Courtly Dee
Park Appeal Ahonoora Lorenzaccio
Helen Nichols
Balidaress Balidar
Urban Sea
Miswaki Mr. Prospector Raise a Native
Gold Digger
Hopespringseternal Buckpasser
Rose Bower
Allegretta Lombard Agio
Promised Lady
Anatevka Espresso


  1. "Sea a star in 2000 Guineas". RTÉ Sport. 2009-05-02. http://www.rte.ie/sport/racing/2009/0502/seathestars_2000guineas.html. Retrieved 2009-06-06. 
  2. "Classic double for Sea The Stars". BBC Sport. 2009-06-06. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/horse_racing/8086890.stm. Retrieved 2009-06-06. 
  3. "Sea The Stars out of Irish Derby". RTÉ Sport. 2009-06-27. http://www.rte.ie/sport/racing/2009/0627/seathestars.html. Retrieved 2009-07-04. 
  4. "Sea The Stars seals historic win". BBC Sport. 2009-07-04. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/horse_racing/8134599.stm. Retrieved 2009-07-04. 
  5. "Sea The Stars notches another win". RTÉ Sport. 2009-08-18. http://www.rte.ie/sport/racing/2009/0818/seathestars.html. Retrieved 2009-08-18. 
  6. "Stars soars to greatness". Irish Independent. 2009-09-06. http://www.independent.ie/sport/horse-racing/stars-soars-to-greatness-1879504.html. Retrieved 2009-09-12. 
  7. "Sea The Stars in historic Arc win". BBC Sport. 2009-10-04. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/horse_racing/8280646.stm. Retrieved 2009-10-04. 
  8. "Sea The Stars named Horse of the Year". RTÉ Sport. 2009-12-14. http://www.rte.ie/sport/racing/2009/1214/seathestars.html. Retrieved 2009-12-14. 
  9. "Oxx calls time as Sea The Stars retired". Irish Times. 2009-10-13. http://www.irishtimes.com/sports/other/2009/1013/1224256568480.html. Retrieved 2009-10-13. 
  10. "Oxx confirms Stars' retirement". RTÉ Sport. 2009-10-13. http://www.rte.ie/sport/racing/2009/1013/seathestars.html. Retrieved 2009-10-13. 
  11. Kelsey Riley (March 6, 2010). "Five Mares Confirmed in Foal to Sea The Stars". bloodhorse.com. http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/55723/five-mares-confirmed-in-foal-to-sea-the-stars. Retrieved 6 July 2010. 


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