Breeders will be denied access to Deep Impact’s Group One winning son Satono Aladdin, who will be unable to shuttle to Rich Hill Stud in New Zealand this season.
Strenuous efforts to secure passage for shuttling Japanese stallions to travel together to Australasia have been foiled due to the worldwide disruption to flights since the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus.
Rich Hill Stud’s John Thompson was keen to see Satono Aladdin, the winner of the Gr.1 Yasuda Kinen (1600m), return to the Waikato for his third season at stud but always knew travel was going to be a major hurdle to clear in this unique year.
“It’s down to the reduction in flights all around the world and air freight is at an absolute premium and they (Shadai) contacted all the major airlines that fly into Japan, but there are no freight space for two stallions and grooms,” Thompson said.
“It’s worldwide and that’s just the way things are at the moment. All parties have been trying for some time to hopefully make it happen, but cost effectively it just can’t be done.”
Thompson was still looking on the bright side and the drawing power of its quartet of residents.
“From our perspective it’s quite disappointing, but we have got four nice stallions here – two proven ones in Shocking and Proisir and two exciting ones in Vadamos and Ace High,” he said.
“It’s not the end of the world and we will have some lovely yearlings by Satono Aladdin to sell next year at Karaka.”
The travel issue for stallions coming from Japan could also be a potential issue for Japanese racehorses targeting feature events in Melbourne during spring, with grooms unable to travel with horses from Japan at present, a hurdle that would need to be overcome quickly if Japanese raiders are to be a factor.