Passing Of Await The Dawn

Passing Of Await The Dawn
Await The Dawn. Image:

Sad news has come through over the weekend regarding the tragic passing of a particularly exciting sire for KZN, Await The Dawn. He was the first son of Giant’s Causeway to be brought into South Africa for stud purposes, residing at Champion breeders’ Summerhill Stud.

Await The Dawn not only made news based on his pedigree and race record, but the fact that he was the first stallion that previously disadvantaged members of Summerhill Stud’s staff had participated meaningfully in the acquisition of, retaining part ownership.

His other shareholders include Piemonte Stud, who were very excited about his future breeding prospects and have a superb filly at foot this season, the first born from his first crop – who is very much in the image of her handsome sire.

His sire Giant’s Causeway, is the first stallion since Bold Ruler to win three American Championships and he has already produced the likes of Sharmadal (12 x Gr1 winners), Footstepsinthesand, First Samurai, Frost Giant and Noble Causeway. This is the family of leading sires Warning, Commander In Chief and Deploy.

Mick Goss of Summerhill Stud recounts on his blog published 18 months ago, what attracted his attention to Await The Dawn: “There are moments in the horse game you never forget. One of those was the running of Ireland’s Kilternan Stakes (Gr.3) two years ago. My curiosity was pricked by the sight of a relatively unknown youngster demolishing a Group field by nine lengths, not so much for the hope that one day he might reside at Summerhill, but because it appeared to herald the dawn of a new international star.

“I followed the winner when he turned up next as the odds-on chalk in the Huxley Stakes (Gr.3) at the Chester festival, and again, he annihilated his foes. There was obviously something extraordinary about this horse, and unusually for me, I took the afternoon off when he next appeared at Royal Ascot for the Hardwicke Stakes (Gr.2) to watch the race. Odds-on was now the norm, and he destroyed his field for the fourth successive time, easing down to win by three. It was clear Await The Dawn was something else.

“He was already the best miler in the world (if not the best horse we’d ever seen), but I was beginning to wonder whether the horse I’d been tracking, was not the best middle distance horse in Europe. That’s a big statement, but it’s apparent that many Europeans thought so, too. They hammered him down to odds-on again for his Group One debut in the Juddmonte International at York, and according to Timeform, “Await The Dawn was clearly ready for Group One company now.”

“In the event, stricken by travel-sickness, he finished a lacklustre third. Timeform reported: “Await The Dawn finished a disappointing third, clearly not himself. It came as no surprise when his stable reported that he was a very sick horse on his way home, his illness apparently life-threatening. A long break will help Await The Dawn to recapture his best form in 2012, when – if he does so – he will surely win a Group One”. Strong words from Europe’s most respected rating agency.

Out of a Dixieland Band/Shirley Heights mare, Await The Dawn’s race record saw him race in the UK, Ireland, USA and Dubai, gaining six wins over 1400-2400m and achieving an impressive Timeform Rating of 126, earning more than R6-million. His first crop of foals are arriving this season.

Our condolences to Summerhill Stud and all involved with Await The Dawn.

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