Multiple Group 1 winner Roaring Lion will be retired to stand at Tweenhills, home of Qatar Racing stallions, at the end of his 3-year-old campaign.
Winner of the Coral-Eclipse, Juddmonte International Stakes and QIPCO Irish Champion Stakes, Roaring Lion added a fourth consecutive Group 1 to his name when beating I Can Fly in the QIPCO Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot.
Roaring Lion will join fellow Group 1 winner Lightning Spear as new additions to an impressive roster of Qatar Racing stallions for the 2019 breeding season.
Looking back on his success, Sheikh Fahad Al-Thani, Chairman of Qatar Racing, said: “Roaring Lion has been the horse of a lifetime for us; he has exceeded our expectations whilst cementing his status as the best three-year-old colt in Europe after winning four Group 1s this season. My brothers and I are incredibly passionate about horse racing and to have a horse like him has been a truly magnificent experience.
“His victories at Sandown and York were incredible and then to follow it up in Ireland was an amazing feeling. We always knew how good he could be, we just hoped he would prove it. He did that at York and has been incredible ever since.”
A decision to whether the son of Kitten’s Joy heads to the Breeders’ Cup will be made in the coming days and will be dependent on how he comes out of his race today.
“Roaring Lion has run his final race in Britain, but the Breeders’ Cup has always been an option and we are definitely not ruling it out just yet. Today is QIPCO British Champions Day and it is fitting that we celebrate Roaring Lion’s success; he should go out as a champion no matter what happens in America.”
Masterfully trained by John Gosden, Roaring Lion will leave Clarehaven Stables at the end of this season for his new residence in Gloucestershire. His trainer commented on the news of his retirement; “Roaring Lion is a gorgeous horse to look at. He is really a bit of a pin up boy! He stands over a lot of ground, has a great head and outlook, great neck and shoulder, and wonderful depth.
“He has all the attributes of a top-class middle-distance horse but with this tremendous turn of foot. It is his acceleration that impresses me so much. His ability to switch off and then go. The Leopardstown win off a low pace showed everyone how he can do that so well.
“It is very important in a stallion that they can take their racing. We started in February, have been hard at it since then, and he is still showing all the right signs and credentials. He is just a really lovely horse to be around and a thoroughly great character.”
Purchased for $160,000 at the Keeneland sales by Qatar Racing’s bloodstock and racing manager David Redvers, Roaring Lion will be one of many star names on offer at their Tweenhills base with the exciting Australian stallion Zoustar and fan-favourite Lightning Spear joining Charm Spirit, Hot Streak and Havana Gold.
“We’ve loved Roaring Lion since we first set eyes on him back in September 2016,” said Redvers. “I’m a big fan of his sire Kitten’s Joy and Roaring Lion was easily the best looking and best moving colt we’d seen by him. We couldn’t believe we got him for the price we did as he just looked like exactly the type of horse we set our sights on. To see how it has all panned out has been an amazing journey.
“He should prove a very exciting prospect at stud. We can’t wait to get him settled in at Tweenhills and begin the process of finding him suitable pairings.”
The rise of Qatar Racing’s retained jockey Oisin Murphy through the weighing room ranks has coincided with Roaring Lion’s sensational year; the Irishman gave a glowing tribute to the horse whom helped him land his first British Group 1:
“Roaring Lion has been a wonderful horse to be involved with and I feel incredibly honoured to have ridden him on some of the biggest stages this year. He gave me an amazing day at Sandown when winning my first British Group 1 and we’ve had some extraordinary days since. I’d like to say a huge thank you to Sheikh Fahad for letting me ride him. He’s an incredible horse who I will remember for the rest of my life.”
For further details on Roaring Lion please visit the Tweenhills website at www.tweenhills.com, or contact David Redvers on +44 7767 436373 or Hannah Wall on +447748 647313.