THE BEST TO DATE FOR PEARLY SHELLS?
Pearly Shells remains the senior mare at Saint Pair, first in terms of status rather than any other criteria. The winner of five of her six career starts including the Group 1 Prix Vermeille in which she beat such stars as Ana Marie, Bright Sky, Guadalupe and Albanova, the thirteen year old is slowly but surely becoming a top broodmare as well. Her first five foals are now all winners and include the Group winner Pearl Banks, but her three year old Monsun filly Pearls Or Passion looks as if she might yet become her dam’s best performer so far.
Pearls Or Passion is trained by Francois Rohaut for Saint Pair and after a promising second place on her debut in May she broke her maiden on her second start at La Teste on June 21 over 2400 metres. Pearls Or Passion looked to be heading for second place again when the Wildenstein stable’s colt Troon quickened into a clear lead in the home straight, but Pearls or Passion found a sudden and unexpected, for those watching at least, turn of foot in the final 100 metres to get up to win in the final strides. This may not have been a top class race but the visual impression was strong, and then none of her dam’s previous four foals had managed to win a race so early in their careers and this daughter of Monsun looks to have a bright future.
Pearls or Passion’s victory was a minor part of a remarkable week for Gestut Schlenderhan’s veteran stallion. Monsun was also represented by two three year old Group winners at Royal Ascot in Energizer and Estimate, and then on Sunday June 24 Yellow And Green became the fifth Group winner from his 55 three year olds when taking the Group 2 Prix de Malleret impressively at Saint Cloud. Monsun has several other very promising three year olds to run for him including Sagham, Imagery, Kailani, Swedish Sailor, and now Pearls Or Passion. Saint Pair has three two year old fillies by Monsun, three yearling colts and a yearling filly as well as a filly foal.