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February 5, 2020 (Wed)

JRA 2019 Leading Sires List

1. Deep Impact(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA) - 257 wins & 27 GSWs
 A bittersweet year for Deep Impact, while he had seven G1 winners in 2019, more than any other stallion in the JRA, the results are marred by the stallion's untimely passing in the summer of 2019. A neck injury early in 2019 breeding season led to surgery, but post-surgery complications led to the champion sire's passing. As his small last crop is born, he goes into 2020 with an 8th consecutive year as Japan's Leading Sire. With both the Oaks and Derby winners and 20 individual graded stakes winners in 2019, it will be another few years before he gets dethroned.

2. Heart's Cry(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA) - 151 wins & 10 GSWs
 He was the only Japanese horse ever to beat Deep Impact(JPN) on the track, and his offspring have proven to be nearly as successful as his rival's on track. He ended the year with four G1 winners, including Horse of the Year Lys Gracieux(JPN) G1 Asahi Hai Futurity Stakes winner Salios(JPN), and G1 Japan Cup winner Suave Richard(JPN).

3. Lord Kanaloa(JPN) - King Kamehameha(JPN) - 160 wins & 10 GSWs
 This amazing young sire moved up the ranks quickly, hitting 7th position in 2018 and in 2019 he moved to third position. With the likes of Saturnalia(JPN) and Almond Eye(JPN) leading the charge, it made this massive jump easy. Between the two, he claimed two JRA G1s in 2019 and one international G1.

4. Stay Gold(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA) - 67 wins & 12 GSWs
 He passed away in 2015, but 2019 proved to be a banner year for the late sire, with two of his sons dominating the news both domestically and internationally. Win Bright(JPN) took home two major G1 races in Hong Kong and Indy Champ(JPN), who won both G1 mile races in Japan in 2019. His son, Orfevre(JPN), made it into the top 10 for the first time as well.

5. Rulership(JPN) - King Kamehameha(JPN) - 109 wins & 10 GSWs
 Surpassing his sire in the rankings was only a matter of time as King Kamehameha(JPN) had several years of interrupted breeding in his final decade of breeding, but Rulership(JPN) has proven to be quite a reliable stallion for many breeders in Japan. His son Mer de Glace(JPN) traveled to Australia and won the G1 Caulfield Cup, which, while his only G1 winner of the year, only improves his situation further. Along with Lord Kanaloa(JPN), these two King Kamehameha(JPN) sons will carry on his legacy into the next decade.

6. King Kamehameha(JPN) - Kingmambo(USA) - 101 wins & 6 GSWs
 He was pensioned earlier in 2019 shortly before passing away, but unlike Deep Impact(JPN), who has yet to produce a true heir to the throne, King Kamehameha(JPN) has two sons already firmly in the top 10 sire rankings upon his death. A versatile stallion with winners over all distances and surfaces, his sons Rulership(JPN) and Lord Kanaloa(JPN) have proven to be just as versatile. Lord Kanaloa(JPN), in particular, brings with him a Sunday Silence(USA) free line that had always made King Kamehameha(JPN) the go-to sire for those with an SS line mare looking to breed a top-class racehorse. He was sidelined off and on during the final few years in the shed, which contributed to his sinking from 2nd place in the rankings to 6th. He was leading sire in 2010 and 2011 before Deep Impact(JPN)'s offspring got going but held onto the #2 slot from 2012 through 2018. His influence on the Japanese breed will not be soon forgotten.

7. Daiwa Major(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA) - 85 wins & 3 GSWs
 While Deep Impact(JPN) makes most of the waves and Heart's Cry(JPN) has usually played second fiddle, Daiwa Major(JPN) has always been a close third as one of Sunday Silence(USA)'s best sons at stud in Japan. Admire Mars(JPN) was Champion Two-Year-Old Colt in 2018 and went on to win two G1 Mile races, including the G1 Hong Kong Mile, against older horses. He also sired 2019 Champion Two-Year-Old Filly Resistencia(JPN). He always has strong juveniles and top-notch shorter distance horses. He has been in the top ten since 2012, the year his first crop turned three.

8. Harbinger(GB) - Dansili(GB) - 72 wins & 6 GSWs
 It has taken a little while for Harbinger(GB) to kick into gear, but the past few years, he has started to shine with G1 winners like Blast Onepiece(JPN), Persian Knight(JPN), Normcore(JPN) and the globetrotting Deirdre(JPN). Normcore(JPN) took home the G1 Victoria Mile in specular fashion, and Deirdre(JPN), who spent most of her 2019 abroad, captured the G1 Nassau Stakes, the first Japanese horse to win that race. Even though he is always near the end of the top 10 rankings, as a sire with no Sunday Silence(JPN), King Kamehameha(JPN)'s absence will likely only increase his value at stud in the years to come.

9. Gold Allure(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA) - 87 wins & 1 GSWs
 As a predominately dirt sire, the late Gold Allure doesn't always make it into the JRA top 10 rankings or is usually at the very end of the list, but in the NAR only rankings he has been in the top 3 for the majority of his stallion career. He passed away in 2017, and his last full crop debuted last year, so his time on this particular list is probably coming to an end, but he has sired some truly brilliant dirt runners, and the three-year-old Chrysoberyl(JPN) is the perfect personification of his talents. He has many sons at stud and will likely see a few more enter stud over the next few years. Gold Dream(JPN) and Chrysoberyl(JPN) represented him well in 2019 and will eventually do it in the shed.

10. Orfevre(JPN) - Stay Gold(JPN) - 103 wins & 2 GSWs
 The wild and wildly talented Orfevre(JPN) makes his debut on the top ten sire rankings in 2019, with his first three crops having run well for him in 2019. He started with a bang with Lucky Lilac(JPN) being crowned Champion Two-Year-Old in 2017, but late last year, she came back to win another G1, the Queen Elizabeth II Cup in November and placed in the G1 Hong Kong Vase. It took his sire Stay Gold(JPN) about seven crops to hit the top 10 sires list, so while he hasn't been as fast out of the gate as most were probably hoping to see, he is doing better thank his sire did at this stage in his career.

*Please note that the wins and GSWs are only in the JRA and do not include NAR or overseas results.

JAR & NAR Cumulative Leading Sire List
There are only minor changes when you look at the cumulative Leading sires as opposed to the JRA only results. King Kamehameha(JPN) moves up a spot, and so does Gold Allure(JPN) and Kinshasa no Kiseki(AUS). South Vigorous(USA), who is a force in the NAR, moved up to 9th position when he is at 17th on the JRA rankings.
1. Deep Impact(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA)
2. Heart's Cry(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA)
3. Lord Kanaloa(JPN) - King Kamehameha(JPN)
4. Stay Gold(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA)
5. King Kamehameha(JPN) - Kingmambo(USA)
6. Rulership(JPN) - King Kamehameha(JPN)
7. Daiwa Major(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA)
8. Gold Allure(JPN) - Sunday Silence(USA)
9. South Vigorous(USA) - End Sweep(USA)
10. Kinshasa no Kiseki(AUS) - Fuji Kiseki(JPN)

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