The Black Caviar Lightning Stakes Best On Breeding..... By Kristen Manning

Named in honour of the grand mare who won the race on three memorable occasions, the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes is a race with an impressive honour roll.

Won by the likes of Chautauqua, Apache Cat, Takeover Target, Fastnet Rock, Choisir, Testa Rossa, General Nediym, Mahogany, Schillaci, Zeditave, Special, Century and Todman it always attracts a classy field and such is the case in 2017.

Thirteen speedsters have accepted to contest the $750,000 dash down the famous Flemington straight and toppie Terravista is attempting to go one better than last year.

Only just nabbed by Chautauqua 12 months ago, Terravista - a son of French Group Two winner Captain Rio - is out of the wonderful broodmare Parfore.

A daughter of speed influence Gold Brose, she has been well represented by five stakes winners, the others being Tiger Tees, Ball Of Muscle, Super Easy and Our Lukas.

It is apt that Flamberge is a Flemington stakes winner as he boasts a local legend in his pedigree, his sixth dam being the outstanding Chicquita after whom Chicquita Lodge was named after - a landmark that over the years has featured in many a race call.

Like Terravista the son of Exceed And Excel is out of a prolific broodmare; the Group Three winner Razor Blade also being dam of stakes winners Sunburnt Land, Durendal and Curtana.

Proven at the elite level at Flemington having won last year's Newmarket Handicap, The Quarterback would be a suitable Black Caviar Stakes winner as he was born and raised at the same stud as she - both being bred by Rick Jamieson's Gilgai Farm.

By Street Cry's US dual Group One winning son Street Boss, The Quarterback is a half-brother to two times Group winner Philippi. He is a descendant of prolific broodmare Dark Jewel, dam of feature race winners Baguette, Betelgeuse, Birthright, Cabochon and Heirloom.

Represented by the 2015 Lightning winner, Redoute's Choice this year has Counterattack in the race. He is yet another son of a successful broodmare being a half brother to the Group One sprinters Red Tracer and Shellscrape.

Defeating Counterattack in last spring's Linlithgow Stakes at Flemington, Illustrious Lad also resumes in the Lightning. By hot young stallion I Am Invincible, he is out of the stakes placed Industrious whose sire Zeditave hails from the same female line as I Am Invincible - both stallions descendants of the acclaimed matriarch Chelandry.

It is a speed family that Illustrious Lad hails from, one that has produced the stakes winners Publishing, Better Than Ready, Miss Mooney Mooney and the great Rancher.

Successful in 2010, Nicconi is attempting to become the first Lightning winner since Zeditave (sire of Sports) to sire a winner of that same race; his son Faatinah - from the family of NZ triple Group One winner King's Chapel - taking his place on Saturday.

Not since Hula Chief in 1986 has a New Zealand bred galloper won the Lightning so Spieth is up against a bit of history. The son of Stradbroke Handicap winner Thorn Park hails from one of the world's great families with his third dam being a half-sister to Fanfreluche, ancestress of many an outstanding horse including Encosta de Lago and Flying Spur.

Speaking of great families - Supido is from one of the very best. Also bred by Rick Jamieson, the son of Sebring can boast amongst his relations the influential stallions Northern Dancer, Danehill, Halo and Machiavellian.

A second Exceed And Excel Lightning 2017 runner, Orujo is a half-brother to Listed winner Limes out of a daughter of the Group One mare Happy Sailing.

Champion Lonhro is yet to sire a Lightning winner but has a chance in the shape of Heatherly whose dam is a half-sister to Stradbroke Handicap winner Linton.

Three-year-old Flying Artie will have many fans on Saturday. The son of Breeders' Cup Mile winner Artie Schiller is out of the stakes winning Rubiton mare Flying Ruby whose dam is a half-sister to one of the true greats of the Australian turf in Better Loosen Up.

Star Witness was a Group One winner down the Flemington straight and Star Turn is trying to replicate the deeds of his sire. Out of the Group Three winner Golden Delicious he hails from the family of Golden Slipper winner Pago Pago.

Like Nicconi, Fastnet Rock is a Lightning winner with Lightning representation, his daughter Missrock the only female runner this year. His dam Miss Judgement was a stakes winner at Flemington and she is one of four stakes winners (including Oakleigh Plate winner Mrs Onassis) for Miss Jakeo whose dam is the dual Group One winning sprinter Lady Jakeo.

And so there is plenty of interest in this year's Lightning, both from the perspective of the punter and the follower of pedigrees. Can Lightning winners Fastnet Rock and Nicconi sire a winner of the same race? Can Gilgai Farm, breeders of Black Caviar provide a quinella with Supido and The Quarterback? Can New Zealand provide its first Lightning winner in decades?

I think it will be the Mick Kent trained Supido who will win this years Black Caviar Lightning Stakes.

Breeding notes are brought to you by Kristen Manning: freelance racing and breeding journalist along with pedigree matching expert. To contact Kristen for any broodmare matching services please email : kristen@justracing.com.au