BAAEED, NEWBURY, THE QUEEN AND THE MAKTOUM FAMILY – THE ROYAL CONNECTION TO THE CHAMPION MILER
The Queen has had a significant role to play in the success of champion miler Baaeed who is set to attempt to stretch his perfect record to seven when he returns to action in the Group 1 Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes at Newbury on Saturday, 14 May.
Through his outstanding bloodline, his pedigree can be traced back to the filly and broodmare Feola who was purchased for King George V in 1934 and passed onto Queen Elizabeth when she inherited the Royal Studs.
In the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee year, which marks 70 years on the throne, Baaeed will line up in Newbury’s signature Flat race in which Pall Mall clinched the inaugural running, the first of two triumphs, in the royal colours in 1958.
Feola was originally bought by General “Mouse” Davis on behalf of King George V. The King passed away in January 1936. Due to succession matters concerning the abdication of Prince Edward, Feola raced as a three-year-old in the colours of Lord Derby. She was a high-class race-mare, finishing second in the 1000 Guineas and third in the Oaks. Eventually, the Royal Studs were passed on to the late King’s second son, by now King George VI.
Feola became a hugely influential broodmare producing, amongst others, Hypericum, who won the 1000 Guineas in 1946 and also finished fourth in the Oaks. When King George VI died, the Royal Studs went to the Queen.
Hypericum’s daughter, Highlight, won twice over a mile and a half for the current monarch in 1961 before being retired to stud.
Her daughter, Highclere, successful at Newbury as a two-year-old, went on to great things the following year, winning the 1000 Guineas and the Prix de Diane, also finishing second to Dahlia in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes.
Highclere’s daughter, Height of Fashion, was a top-class two-year-old, winning her first three starts, the Acomb Stakes, the May Hill Stakes and the Fillies’ Mile.
After her three-year-old career had concluded, she was sold to Sheikh Hamdan al Maktoum and from then on, this particular bloodline has carried his royal blue and white silks, still in use today despite his passing in March 2021.
Now under “new management” Height of Fashion continued the outstanding success of her female forebears. Nashwan, Nayef and Unfuwain, who were all first-time-out winners at Newbury, were amongst several fine horses she produced.
Bashayer, one of their half-sisters and a useful winner in her own right, is Baaeed’s fourth dam. Baaeed’s great-grandam, Rahayeb, grandam Lahudood and dam Aghareed were all winners too, the last two-named smart performers trained for Sheikh Hamdan by John Hammond in France.
Doubtless, given Baaeed’s lineage, the Queen would be thrilled if he could win the Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes in her Platinum Jubilee year, a race Pall Mall, owned and bred by her, landed the first two renewals of in 1958 and 1959.
Pall Mall wasn’t from the outstanding female line the Queen’s late grandfather founded. Outstanding isn’t an exaggeration as, apart from the names listed above, numerous other top horses around the world are directly descended from Feola.
Although the extended Maktoum family have landed the Group 1 Lockinge on no fewer than 14 occasions (principally through Godolphin), to date the gelding Mustashry’s success in 2019 has been the only winner in Sheikh Hamdan’s famous blue and white.