Best On Breeding
Mark Smith - Thursday, 5 January 2017

The incredible rise of I Am Invincible was recognised by breeders in 2016 when the owners of 205 mares beat a path to Yarraman Park.

Cracking a double century at a fee of $55,000 is not bad for a stallion that began his career at $11,000.

Amongst the current crop of stallions, only Written Tycoon, who began his career at $8,250 and fell as low as $6,600 for his third and fourth seasons, and Not A Single Doubt who stood his first season at $13,750 and covered 122 mares in 2016 at a fee of $71,500, can compare.

Written Tycoon covered 212 mares in 2016 despite having his fee raised from $19,800 in 2015 to $49,500.

We are talking some serious cash here.

I Am Invincible has hit the ground running this season with six stakes-winners of 11 stakes races to date. They are led by the Group I Myer Classic heroine I Am A Star.

With five winning juveniles already, I Am Invincible has the ammunition to make a serious run for champion sire of two-year-olds.

His cause will be helped if the Gail Waterhouse/Adrian Bott-trained Invincible Star returns to the form she showed in the spring when she captured the Group III Ottawa Stakes (1000m) when making her career debut at Flemington on Melbourne Cup Day.

She is among the favourites for the $2 million Magic Millions 2yo Classic at the Gold Coast but she may not be the only daughter of I Am Invincible with a winning chance.

The Gold Coast trainer Toby Edmonds put the polish on I Am Invincible in the early part of his career and looks to have something special with Houtzen (pictured as a yearling).

The Magic Million graduate had already earned a reputation as well above average off the back of some sparkling trial form, which saw her start an odd-on favourite for her career debut at Doomben on Christmas Eve.

It was an easy watch for supporters, as the daughter of I Am Invincible cruised home by four lengths.

Bred by Noel Leckie, Houtzen stakes her claim for the $2 million Magic Millions 2yo Classic in Saturday’s QTIS Two-Years-Old Handicap (1100m) at the Gold Coast.

Houtzen is the second d foal of the Reset mare Set to Unleash, whose dam, Leash (Redoute’s Choice), is a half-sister to Sun Classique who was honoured as champion three-year-old filly of her year in South Africa with three wins at the highest level, the Cape Fillies Guineas, the Fancourt Majorca Stakes and the Woolavington at Durban.

Sent by trainer Mike de Kock to Dubai, Sun Classique reeled off three wins in as many starts including the Group 1 Dubai Sheema Classic encouraging connections to set their sights on the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Newmarket.

She was consigned to the 2012 Inglis Easter Broodmare where the big spending Nathan Tinkler shelled out $2 million to take her back to Patinack Farm.

Tinkler also ended up as the buyer of Set To Unleash.

Bred by Think Big Stud, Set To Unleash was purchased by Patinack Farm for $120,000 at the 2009 Inglis Easter Yearling sale.

Four years later she was back in the sales ring, this time at the Magic Millions Broodmare sale where she made just $2,500 to the bid of Sledmere Stud.

She was empty at the time having missed to Lope De Vega but she was back in the same sales ring a year later carrying a positive test to I Am Invincible.

She was knocked down to Yarraman Park for $24,000 and subsequently foaled a filly that was consigned to the 2015 Magic Millions National Weanling sale.

She went back home after failing to make her $55,000 reserve.

 A year later, the filly now named Houtzen, was purchased by Edmonds Racing for $105,000 from Book 2 of the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling sale.

It’s already looking like money well spent.  

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