It’s no secret that European Classic-winning miler Karakontie could be poised to become Gainesway’s next star stallion in a long line of great European imports.
From the family of Kingmambo, he is the latest of several G1 French Two Thousand Guineas winners to stand at the farm, and like his predecessors, has the strong potential to make a major impact on the North American Thoroughbred breed.
“Some of the best stallions to ever stand at Gainesway were European classic-winning milers,” Gainesway president Antony Beck said. “Significant stallions such as Riverman, Green Dancer, Irish River, and Blushing Groom all won the French 2000 Guineas, like Karakontie. He validated his European form with his sensational victory on Breeders’ Cup day (in the 2014 G1 BC Mile).”
Karakontie, a son of Bernstein, sold seven six-figure offspring last year. He has his first 2-year-olds on the ground in 2019, and according to Nancy Sexton of the Racing Post, they will be trained by the likes of Andre Fabre, Sir Michael Stoute, Pascal Bary, Wesley Ward, Jessica Harrington, Mark Johnston, and Roger Varian.
A number are also likely to be sighted on the breeze-up circuit, both in Europe and the U.S.
“We will have Karakontie 2-year-olds in England, Ireland, France, and the States,” said Alan Cooper, racing manager to the Niarchos family, who retained an interest in the stallion.
Karakontie, a direct descendant to the mighty Miesque, has produced several foals in his first crop that are inbred to that horse, according to Sexton.
“He throws plenty of size, and they move well,” Gainesway’s Michael Hernon said. “I feel like they’re progressive physically in that they come on strong as yearlings. If that progression continues, I’d be very hopeful about him, especially as they are in good hands. I’m optimistic he can come through.”
With a powerful international ownership group that includes the aforementioned Niarchos family, John Moores and Charles Noell’s Merriebelle Stable in addition to Gainesway, Karakontie has the support, the talent, and the pedigree to follow in the footsteps of the greats that have gone before him.
Read more about Karakontie’s first 2-year-olds in Nancy Sexton’s Racing Post article “Karakontie Among French Guineas Heroes at Gainesway.”