Newmarket came up a little stormy on Saturday when Night of Thunder made a bold, erratic late move to sweep by Kingman in the 2000 Guineas. Everyone was a little shocked – some were expecting a romp from Kingman, some from Toormore, some from Australia, but instead, it was this son of Dubawi that we had to crown our new classic champion.
Fast-forward to a day later. Miss France was home free but, near the wire, a filly came with a rush towards her, eager to steal her crown. Alas, Miss France held on, and the closer, Lightning Thunder, had to settle for second. The thunderstorms, a little tamer this time, still rolled on.
Night of Thunder and Lightning Thunder have a few things in common. Their names, of course, both evoke images of stormy nights, rain violently hitting the windows, the sky bright with electricity. But take a look at their pedigrees, side by side, and you’ll notice an interesting little similarity:
On their sire side, trace four generations back and you will find the great American sire Mr. Prospector.
On their damsire side, trace four generations back and you will find the incomparable Northern Dancer.
Those two sires are also both found twice in their pedigree, and they have other crosses as well. Night of Thunder has the great Mill Reef twice in his pedigree, and Lightning Thunder has a 4×5 cross to Storm Bird in her pedigree.
Now that we’ve gotten the similarities out of the way, let’s take a look at these pedigrees individually and see what interesting things we can find.
Night of Thunder (Dubawi – Forest Storm, by Galileo)
Beautiful pedigree on this colt, and fascinating as well – by a Darley stallion out of a Coolmore-sired mare. The Irish-bred colt has influences from all over the world; there are horses bred in Britain, Germany, America, Canada, and, of course, Ireland, in his bloodlines.
His sire Dubawi was one of a small first crop for the ill-fated Dubai Millenium, who died due to grass fever a few months after Dubawi was conceieved. He is out of Italian Oaks winner Zomaradah and has done an excellent job at picking up the pieces from his sire’s early departure. Among his best offspring are multiple Group 1 winner Al Kazeem, Dubai World Cup winner Monterosso, Hong Kong champion Lucky Nine, and a 2000 Guineas winner – his first – in Makfi.
Night of Thunder is out of the stakes-placed mare Forest Storm, a British-bred but Irish-raced filly out of another stakes-placed filly in Quiet Storm. The female family is quite modest until you get back to fourth dam Forest Flower, a champion two year-old filly in England and Irish 1000 Guineas winner. Forest Flower is a half-sister to the dam of a multiple Grade 1 winner in America, High Yield. This is also the family, from Night of Thunder’s seventh dam Quillobelle, of German 1000 Guineas winner Mi Anna.
Night of Thunder is from female family 2-n, which traces back to a mare born in 1790 known only as the Alexander Mare. Some famous names in this family include influential sire Teddy, English Triple Crown winner Gainsborough, American classic winners Touch Gold and Point Given, and the great Sea-Bird.
Lightning Thunder (Dutch Art – Sweet Coincidence, by Mujahid)
Though Lightning Thunder did not win the 1000 Guineas, her name will forever be in the history books as the runner-up. Let’s take a peek at her pedigree as well, which has a lot of classic in it.
Dutch Art was an exceptional two year-old, winning two Group 1 races in England and France. At three, he finished on the board in some more Group 1 events, including a third in the 2000 Guineas. He is the son of Color-Eclipse and Lockinge winner Medicean, who is in turn a son of Machiavellian, better known for international leading sire Street Cry. Dutch Art has gotten off to a pretty modest start as a sire, though he is the sire of stakes performer Slade Power.
This filly’s dam, Sweet Coincidence, is a daughter of the Danzig-sired Mujahid, who, like Dutch Art, was a Group 1 winner at two and finished third in the 2000 Guineas. This pedigree gets a little more interesting with the third dam, Daki, who is a half-sister to Tinners Way, a two-time winner of the Grade 1 Pacific Classic. Fifth dam Devon Ditty was a champion two year-old filly in England, and if you look way, way back, you can find that this is the family of the 1931 Derby and Guineas winner Cameronian.
Lightning Thunder hails from female family 1-t, which is a branch of Family 1, the family with the most English classic success when these bloodlines were catalogued. 1-t traces back to a mare named Trampoline, born in 1825, who was the dam of Glencoe, a fantastic racehorse and a sire who was the direct male ancestor of a great many American classic winners, including the marvelous Hindoo.