Trainer: Harry Eustace
Details: 5yo Brown Gelding
Shares in Mustazeed are available to purchase – please click here to find out more.
MUSTAZEED is a stunning 5yo gelding by the Group One winner and Two Thousand Guineas runner up, Territories, one of the Top Ten first season sires of 2020, and who has enhanced that reputation ever since, looking set for a terrific career at stud. Mustazeed is out of the impeccably bred Mejala who is a half sister to no less than FIVE pattern race performers, and comes from the well established Shadwell family that has produced Group One winners Bahhare and Bahri among many other top class performers. His pedigree is, indeed, excellent.
Mustazeed is already a winner of four races, including his first start in 2023 at Newbury’s Classic Trials meeting but his first win came when waltzing away with his very first race on turf, winning at Great Yarmouth by three and a half lengths in June ‘21 under Jack Mitchell, and his second win came in October of that year at Doncaster, under a brilliant ride from Hollie Doyle – more on this below… after this success in October 2021, Mustazeed was very much sought after but his dedicated owners decided to roll the dice and keep him with a spectacular 4yo season in mind, in 2022.
Being a late April foal and, as a result, quite green and backward as a youngster, he had been brought along steadily and after making his debut for Simon & Ed Crisford, we purchased him at the Autumn horses-in-training sales, in October 2020. He was part of a large draft from Shadwell Stud and therefore owned by the former Champion owner and member of the ruling family of Dubai, the late, HH Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum.
Having purchased him and placed him with stalwart Newmarket trainer, Chris Wall, we gave him a couple more starts on the all weather to get him qualified for handicaps and, also, to continue his education. He was always our prime target at the sale, being a three parts brother to a black-type (pattern race) performer in Mutaaqeb and also a half brother to a six time winner, Naralsaif. We were alerted to this horse’s potential well before the sale, indeed, well before he made his racecourse debut in a hot maiden, noting he had a lovely, laid back temperament. We gelded him in the Winter and he matured nicely through the Spring and Summer, strengthening up nicely, all the while.
Patience really is a virtue with young horses and we feel sure that the time we afforded him over that Winter would be repaid in full and, sure enough, he made his first repayment when winning nicely on his first start on turf, at Yarmouth, winning comfortably from a couple of subsequent winners beating Michael Bell’s prolific True Courage easily, under Jack Mitchell. This initial success was followed by ecstatic scenes as his new owners were delighted with the outcome, many having their first ever winner and for one syndicate member, their first ever runner. What a start!
Mustazeed followed that up with a couple of good placed efforts notably when a desperately unlucky third at Sandown Park behind HM The late Queen Elizabeth’s’s Wink of an Eye, trained by William Haggas. Travelling every bit as well as that horse as they turned into the home straight, Mustazeed found his way continually blocked but still managed to force his way into third on the line, under Martin Dwyer and, undoubtedly, with a clear run would almost certainly have been second if not giving the winner plenty to think about. That winner subsequently selling for 220,000 guineas at the Newmarket horses in training sale.
In October, having shunned the sales Mustazeed was sent up to Doncaster to take part in a decent 1m2f handicap, the final race of the day, and under a superb ride from Hollie Doyle, he stormed forward to win well… making Hollie’s day as she broke her previous record for the number of winners in a year but also creating joyous scenes in the winners enclosure as the members of his syndicate whooped with joy at his scintillating performance.
His victory at Doncaster suggested there was plenty more improvement still to come as he strengthened even more and filled his impressive frame. Indeed, the ever impressive Hollie indicated a similar perspective.
However, due to a careless driver in Newmarket just prior to the season’s start in 2022, Mustazeed was startled by his screeching halt at a horse crossing and slightly injured his pelvis. As a result, he was, naturally given plenty of time to recover and with the excessively warm Summer unlikely to provide the type of ground he thrives upon, we gave him plenty of time to get right, get his fitness back and, once we found his ground and a suitable race, we sent him to Newbury for a 10f handicap where he surpassed all our expectations after such a long time off the track and ran a blinder behind Perseus Day. Still considered very nicely handicapped, he was then asked to go to Yarmouth just eight days later and, but for an ill-judged ride, would surely have repaid all our faith by winning at the end of September. Finishing a good second to another well handicapped horse, Mustazeed was still a fresh horse and our inflated view of him was given a real boost when Racing Post Ratings indicated his Yarmouth run to be the best of his career, at that point, confirming he retains all the ability we felt he had the previous season and still being on the upgrade.
He concluded his season with a return to Doncaster for the race he had won the year before, with Hollie Doyle aboard but with Hollie unavailable on this occasion, young 7lb claimer, Kaiya Fraser was entrusted with the ride. He ran another stormer and by his own admission, Kaiya gave him a lot to do and just couldn’t make up the necessary leeway on the eventual winner, the out and out stayer, Red Derek. Second again, the horse gave his all, in terrible ground and once again, Racing Post Ratings indicated he had shown further improvement.
However, just a few weeks later, we were all hit with the bombshell that his trainer, Chris Wall was to relinquish his license and retire from training. Knowing we still had an improving sort on our hands, we sent Mustazeed away for a Winter holiday while we considered seriously where he should consider his career….
Trainer – Harry Eustace
After well established Newmarket stalwart, Chris Wall, a multiple Group One winning trainer, announced his retirement from training, we considered, very carefully, our options for Mustazeed in anticipation of what we fully expected to be a big season for the 5yo and we were very pleased to have placed him with Harry Eustace at Park Lodge Stables, in the heart of Newmarket. Harry took over the reins at Park Lodge Stables in 2021, following on from his father, James Eustace’s 30 years as a trainer, whom we had the utmost respect for and with whom we were looking to place a horse, prior to his retirement.
Harry kicked off his first season making an almost instant impact when saddling ten winners in his first four months and has continued to progress in his second season, where he dramatically increased the strike rate of the yard. Harry’s passion and youthful exuberance for the sport shines brightly through, and having previously worked for Chris Wall at Induna Stables, there is great familiarity with the methodology that Chris would have employed.
Harry was very pleased to have inherited Mustazeed and the 5yo got off to the perfect start to 2023 when he won the final event on the Greenham Stakes card, at Newbury, in late April. With the ground absolutely to his liking and a big band of Owners in tow, Mustazeed trounced his field under a terrific, cool ride from Kieran Shoemark, showing significant improvement and putting up the best run of his career.
Its hardly surprising that, with a trouble free preparation, Harry and his team have brought about this improvement in him and he did, indeed, look a million dollars prior to that race. He still has more improvement to come and with big plans for the coming season, there are still a couple of shares remaining in this exciting, lightly raced sort.
He showed even further improvement when winning again at Newbury in the £35,000 Unibet handicap at the Lockinge meeting and although that wont have been missed by the handicapper, he really is thriving.
Who knows what the year holds for him but if his Newbury performances are anything to go by, he has a way still to go and will continue to provide his Owners with tons more exhilaration and excitement.