PROFILE: Epaulette – electric sprinter, domestic winner getter, international sire

Written by Mike Hedge

Epaulette is a dual G1 winner in his own right, one of the best among a golden era of Australian sprinters and a racehorse who added a new dimension to an already outstanding pedigree.

Epaulette is building a reputation as a stallion that is truly international and growing stronger by the season, while domestically his reputation as a winner getter is too growing.

Last season, Epaulette finished within the Top 50 sires by winners, ahead of fellow retiring-to-stud-crop sire Dundeel, plus his barn mate Lonhro proving his winner getter title.

Standing Stallion Winners Wins
38    Epaulette          67         105     
39    Dundeel    66    102
40    Lonhro    65    130
41    Uncle Mo    64    93
42    Unencumbered    63    94
43    Lope de Vega    62    101
44    Better Than Ready         62    97

Table: 2019/20 season standings by winners

On the racetrack Epaulette got things underway in immaculate style, winning his first two starts and claiming Stakes success at the second of them in Listed Black Opal Stakes and then going down by a nose to the champion of his year, Pierro, in the G2 Todman Stakes.

At only his sixth start, and the second of his second season of racing, he won the G1 Golden Rose before achieving the rare feat for a three-year-old when beating older horses in the G1 Doomben 10,000.

Along the way, he chased home Black Caviar, finishing second to the unbeaten star in her final appearance in the G1 TJ Smith Stakes at Randwick.

“He had an electric turn of foot that was emphasised best in the Golden Rose, coming from last two beat a very good group of three-year-olds,” said his trainer Peter Snowden.

Epaulette winning the Listed Black Opal Stakes, 2012

Epaulette retired after one run as a four-year-old and had immediate success at stud, his first Australian crop producing three Group winners, a figure unmatched by an Australian stallion.

At the head of that list was the multiple South African G1 winner Soqrat.

Epaulette’s first yearlings to go through an Australian sale ring attracted appropriate interest, selling for up to $260,000 while in France last year a filly by Epaulette made €420,000 and was a winner on debut.

By the end of the spring of 2020, Epaulette had sired 15 individual Stakes winners, headed by Soqrat in South Africa and Red Lark, a member of his second Irish-bred crop and the winner in 2020 of the G1 Del Mar Oaks.

Epaulette is rated the best son of the leading stallion Commands, a member of the famed Eight Carat family a brother to the champion three-year-old Danewin.

He is from the Singspiel mare Accessories whose four winners from five to race included the G1 winner and sire Helmet and the Group winners Bullbars and Pearls, as well as Epaulette.

Epaulette has 12 yearlings catalogued at January’s Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale, including:

  • Lot 18: a filly from Adria who is a sister to the G1 Golden Slipper and G1 Sires' Produce Stakes winner Sebring. Also the family of the Stakes winner Pureness and of multiple Stakes winner Surtee. Consigned by Corumbene Stud.
  • Lot 270: a filly from Epsilon. The dam is a half-sister to Stakes winner Cosmic Strike and is closely related to dual Group winner Meryl (Epaulette). Offered by Eureka Stud.
  • Lot 955: a colt and a half-brother to Stakes winner Kobayashi, from Woodstock Hussy. Second dam Explosive Love, a sister to the international Stakes winner Monopolize. Offered by Edinglassie Thoroughbreds.


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