Jungle Magnate gives his sire Tarzino his first Group 1 winner.

Photo credit \ Ultimate Racing Photos

Tarzino Keeping the Best of Group 1 Company

Tarzino has made a hot start to his career with two elite performers from his first crop and highlighted by the commanding display of his son Jungle Magnate, who produced an imperious performance to claim the Group 1 South Australian Derby.

As a son of Tavistock and a Zabeel mare, it was always to be expected that the Westbury Stud stallion’s progeny would need time and distance to realise their potential and further Classic success beckons before the season’s end.

Tarzino three-year-old Gypsy Goddess finished runner-up in the G1 Australian Oaks and is a ruling favourite to go one better in the G1 Queensland Oaks on June 4 for trainer David Vandyke.

Should the filly justify her support at Eagle Farm, Tarzino would feature among an elite group of stallions at the same stage of their careers.

He would join sires including Extreme Choice, Makfi, Maurice, Pierro, So You Think and Sir Tristram to have produced two top-flight winners from their first crops.

Leading light include Danehill had four from his while Fastnet Rock, High Chaparral and Star Way had three apiece.

On current standings, Tarzino is on a par with the likes of Capitalist, Centaine, Darci Brahma, Deep Field, Westbury associate sire El Roca, Grosvenor, I Am Invincible, O’Reilly, Per Incanto, Pins, Redoute’s Choice, Shamus Award, his father Tavistock, Three Legs and Zabeel with one elite level first-crop winner.

Group 1 racing is the ultimate measuring yardstick so comparisons are on an apples with apples basis.

When measuring Tarzino’s rise, it is worth noting that Exceed And Excel, Iffraaj, Lonhro, Not A Single Doubt, Savabeel, Snitzel, Street Boss, Street Cry and Written Tycoon were without a Group 1-winning representative at the same stage of their careers.

It was also completely fitting that Mick Price, who now operates in partnership with Michael Kent Jnr, should be the guiding hand behind Jungle Magnate as he trained Tarzino to win the G1 VRC Derby and G1 Rosehill Guineas.

“Tarzino was a special horse for the stable, very good memories. As a stallion, he’s doing a great job and he’s under-rated,” said Price after Jungle Magnate’s Morphettville success.

“We’ve got a few of them so this time next year I reckon we’ll have another big, strong Tarzino back here.”

Jungle Magnate was a $75,000 Karaka purchase out of Westbury’s draft with breeder Gerry Harvey has remaining in the ownership group.

The gelding has enjoyed a lucrative preparation with lead-up victories in the Mornington Guineas and G3 Chairman’s Stakes before a dominant display in the Derby.

“We had it pegged right this time in, he came back after a good spell and had ban ideal prep and a nice circle around this race,” Price said.

“I never want to go too far with my horses so I want to put him out now, he’s done a good job so I want to see him in the paddock.”

The G1 Caulfield Cup and the G1 Melbourne Cup will be atop next season’s wish list.

Jungle Magnate improved steadily from the back of the field on Saturday under the urgings of jockey Mark Zahra, who also rode the horse in his debut juvenile victory, and they proved far superior in the run home.

“He's a horse that can get pulling and there looked to be good speed on paper, so my main objective was to get him to switch off,” Zahra said.

“I just came out on his neck and we were back near last, but he was very relaxed, which was good for him and it was just a matter from the 1000 metres onwards to pick the right path to go through.

“They looked to be jamming up a bit too much towards the inside for me, so I elected to come out and we ended up going around them.

“When I asked him at the 600-metre mark, boy did he let rip. I was asking him a bit early, but he's got a big stride, he's a lovely stayer and I just wanted to keep his momentum going and he was strong - it was a very good win.”