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London to a brick on Blackfriars

First-starter London Line launched another winning weekend for Blackfriars in the Happy Birthday Aaron Rankine Plate (1000m) at Ascot.

The champion Scenic Lodge stallion has now sired the winners of 50 races this season. Grey filly Cushryn was another of his debut winners on Saturday at Narrogin and Shining Knight added the LR Crawford Stakes later in the afternoon at Ascot.

London Line (2g Blackfriars – Line Of Flight by Bletchley Park) raced greenly in the straight and shifted inwards near the furlong but had the class to collar War Chant filly Kentucky Lass right on the line.

He is the first of the Blackfriars two year-olds to race this season and there was black-type written all over the victory. “He’s still new and there’s plenty of upside,” trainer Dan Morton said. “And being by Blackfriars, you would expect him to mature into a nice horse.”

A homebred for Anita Vale Stud owner Robert Anderson, he is from a family that has provided numerous highlights for Morton and Scenic Lodge. His dam’s half-brother Scenic Shot won 17 races including Group 1 conquests in a Mackinnon Stakes and two Doomben Cups.

Anderson also raced his dam’s sister Flight Path to win the 2009 Perth Magic Millions 3YO Trophy.

Blackfriars has sired 28 stakes winners and the majority of them come good when going further than a mile as three year-olds. But they do get up and run at two as evidenced by G3 WA Sires’ Produce Stakes winners Prentice (2014) and God Has Spoken (2009).

And he has the versatility to get an out-and-out sprinter like Shining Knight who improved his record to 6 wins in 15 starts up to 1200 metres in the Crawford Stakes.

Blackfriars is a Top 25 stallion on the Australian premiership with earnings over $1.75 million. He’s a half-million dollars ahead of any other sire in WA and a fifth Sunspeed title appears a fait accompli.