Shadwell might have undergone a rationalization in numbers in recent years, but its broodmare band still contains significant strength in depth.
The rich quality of its herd is demonstrated by the fact that it will be honored with the Queen's Silver Cup as leading British-based flat breeder at this year's TBA awards, based on racecourse results in Britain and Ireland in 2023.
The past year brought homebred group 1 victories for Al Husn, Hukum, and Mostahdaf; group 2 successes for Alflaila, Israr, and Mutasaabeq; and, a group 3 score for Alyanaabi, who was also runner-up in the Dewhurst Stakes (G1).
Mostahdaf has now joined the Shadwell stallion squad at Beech House Stud in Newmarket, and the well-bred son of Frankel will receive strong home support in his first season there, according to mating plans kindly shared by Sheikha Hissa's operation with Good Morning Bloodstock.
The five mares he is being sent by Shadwell include one from its iconic Height of Fashion family in Alaflaak, an unraced daughter of War Front and 2007 Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1T) heroine Lahudood, and therefore a half sister to Baaeed and Hukum's dam Aghareed. She has already clicked with Mostahdaf's damsire Dubawi to produce the smart filly Rowayeh.
Mostahdaf is also being sent Alaroos, a winning Golden Horn half sister to 2019 Derby (G1) second Madhmoon; Alghabrah, a group 3-placed Tamayuz half sister to 2016 Irish Two Thousand Guineas (G1) hero Awtaad; Ataared, a listed-winning daughter of Muhaarar; and Wasaayef, a winning Kingman mare closely related to 2006 Irish One Thousand Guineas (G1) victress Nightime and her champion son Ghaiyyath.
Mostahdaf's listed-winning dam Handassa, who also has produced dual group 1 scorer Nazeef, is one of seven Shadwell mares who will visit his new Beech House Stud colleague Baaeed during his second season as a stallion.
The others are 2020 Prix Saint-Alary (G1) heroine Tawkeel, a daughter of Teofilo and the listed-winning Oasis Dream mare Rafaadah; listed scorers Mehnah, a Frankel half sister to Awtaad, and Zanbaq, an Oasis Dream mare descended from Serena's Song; listed-placed Ettisaal, a Dubawi half sister to top miler Tamayuz; and the winners Khayzaraan, by Kingman and related to Tamayuz, and Tatweej, an Invincible Spirit half sister to champion Palace Pier.
Sussex Stakes (G1) victor Mohaather, who completes the Beech House Stud roster and will be represented by his debut 2-year-olds in 2024, will receive the New Approach mare Mukaddamah, who signed off from her racing career with a wide-margin victory in a listed contest at Newcastle in November.
High-class 2-year-old and 2022 Haydock Sprint Cup (G1) winner Minzaal, who stands under the Shadwell banner at Derrinstown Stud in County Kildare, also has home help in the shape of two winning and well related mares—Kidwah, a Kodiac half sister to the useful filly Great Page, and Tawafuq, a daughter of Frankel whose granddam is 2004 Poule d'Essai des Pouliches (G1) heroine Torrestrella.
Champion sprinter Muhaarar, who has sired top-level winners Eshaada and Marhaba Ya Sanafi and has moved to Haras du Petit Tellier in Normandy this year under the joint ownership of Shadwell and a consortium of French breeders, receives Dujaa, an unraced Sea The Stars full sister to the great Taghrooda.
An earlier union of Muhaarar and Taghrooda produced last year's 4 1/2-length 2023 Princess of Wales's Stakes (G2) winner Israr.
Shadwell have enjoyed wonderful success with Sea The Stars, breeding from him not only 2014 Oaks (G1) and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes (G1) victress Taghrooda but also the brilliant full brothers Baaeed and Hukum and group 1-placed pair Hadaatha and Raabihah.
It is no surprise to see the Gilltown Stud-based champion receive some of the cream of the operation's broodmare band again this year, then; and it is especially predictable that Baaeed and Hukum's listed-winning dam Aghareed is among their number.
The others to grace his court will be Nazeef, the top-notch Invincible Spirit half sister to Mostahdaf; Mashmoom, a winning Muhaarar half sister to Tamayuz; and Aneen, a listed-placed Lawman half sister to Awtaad who is the dam of last year's exciting 3-year-old filly Al Asifah.
Frankel, another elite stallion with whom Shadwell has developed a fruitful relationship, having bred the likes of Mostahdaf and Al Asifah from him, has been chosen as the first partner for last year's Nassau Stakes (G1) winner Al Husn, a daughter of Dubawi and Hadaatha.
Dubawi receives another strong raft of mares from Shadwell, led by British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes (G1) winner Eshaada, a Muhaarar mare related to Tamayuz; and black-type scorers Maqsad, a Siyouni half sister to last year's classy juvenile Cambridge, and Zeyaadah, a daughter of Tamayuz from the powerful Reprocolor empire.
The Dalham Hall Stud stalwart is also set to cover Hameem, a listed-placed Teofilo half sister to 2013 Grand Prix de Deauville (G2) winner Tres Blue, and Manaajim, an unraced Muhaarar half sister to 2018 Cheveley Park Stakes (G1) scorer Fairyland.
Dubawi's growing number of blue-chip stallion sons are being well supported by Shadwell this season too.
Too Darn Hot, who stands alongside his sire at Dalham Hall, will again cover Alyamaama, the unraced Kitten's Joy half sister to outstanding racemare Ghanaati who produced the sire's exciting 3-year-old colt Alyanaabi, as well as Alandalos, a winning daughter of Invincible Spirit and Ghanaati.
Also lined up to visit him are Enbihaar, a five-time group 2 scorer by Redoute's Choice; Shaara, a listed-winning daughter of Shamardal; Asheerah, the listed-placed dam of Awtaad; and Manaafis, an unraced Frankel half sister to high-class trio Eqtidaar, Massaat, and Mujbar.
Modern Games, another multiple group 1-winning son of Dubawi who joined the Dalham Hall roster this year, has on his dance card the Shadwell mares Adool, a smart daughter of Teofilo who is the dam of last month's impressive Newcastle maiden winner Alhattan, and Majmu, an Australian-bred daughter of Redoute's Choice who was successful at the highest level in South Africa.
Dubawi's Kildangan Stud-based sons Ghaiyyath and Night of Thunder will also benefit from Shadwell's blue-blooded broodmare band.
The former, who is one of the most keenly anticipated freshmen this year, will cover Jahafil, a daughter of Kingman and Taghrooda, and Zaghaareed, an Intello half sister to Baaeed, while the latter, the source of Shadwell-raced 2020 Jersey Stakes (G3) scorer Molatham and Coventry Stakes (G2) runner-up Qaader, will be sent Tarhib, a listed-placed Dark Angel relation to Auguste Rodin.
Shadwell is also tapping into Darley's other currently potent sire-line of Shamardal, by using his sons Blue Point, the reigning European champion freshman sire, and Pinatubo, the unbeaten multiple group 1-winning 2-year-old who looks set to make a big impression with his own debut 2-year-olds this year.
Blue Point will cover at Kildangan the black-type winners Efaadah, a Dansili half sister to Shamardal's group 1-placed daughter Alrahma; Manaafith, a daughter of Exceed And Excel related to group 3-placed Turjomaan; and Tantheem, a Teofilo mare from the family of Tamayuz; as well as Altaayshah, an unraced Dark Angel full sister to record-breaking sprinter Battaash.
Dalham Hall-based Pinatubo has meanwhile been assigned Al Raahba, an unraced Frankel half sister to Baaeed, and her close relation Ojooba, a listed-placed Dubawi full sister to dual Meydan group 3 winner Muntazah.
Palace Pier, another champion at Dalham Hall, will be visited by Alrashaka, a Frankel half sister to Ojooba and Muntazah, and Tarfasha, a daughter of Teofilo who won the 2014 Blandford Stakes (G2) and found only Taghrooda too good in the Oaks, and has bred black-type performers Giladah, Rakan, and Wuqood.
Palace Pier's sire Kingman receives Tajaanus, a group 3-winning daughter of Arcano, and that mare's close relation Anghaam, a winning daughter of Frankel and 2008 One Thousand Guineas heroine Natagora. Also booked into him is Allayaali, a winning Dark Angel half sister to top mare Just The Judge.
Among the other highlights of Shadwell's mating plans in 2024 are a liaison between the mighty Taghrooda and Wootton Bassett.
Looking at all those mouthwatering matches, it's easy to imagine that the operation will need to make space on the mantelpiece for more Queen's Silver Cups in the years ahead.