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Sire Top Ville
Grandsire High Top
Dam Delsy
Damsire Abdos
Sex Mare
Foaled 11 May 1983[1]
Country Ireland
Colour Bay
Breeder Aga Khan IV
Owner Aga Khan IV
Trainer Alain de Royer-Dupre
Record 6:3-1-0
Major wins
Prix de Psyche (1986)
Prix Vermeille (1986)
Top-rated European three-year-old filly, 11 furlongs plus (1986)
Timeform top-rated three-year-old filly (1986)
Timeform rating: 129 in 1986

Darara (11 May 1983 – June 2012) was an Irish-bred, French-trained Thoroughbred racehorse and broodmare. Her racing career was restricted to six races between June and November 1983 and included three wins including the Prix Vermeille and Prix de Psyche. She went on to finish sixth behind Dancing Brave in France's most important race, the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and was one of the highest-rated fillies of her generation in Europe. She was then retired to stud and became a highly successful producer of winners.


Darara was a small, lightly built bay mare with a faint white star and a white sock on her left hind leg bred in Ireland by his owner Aga Khan IV. Her sire Top Ville was an Irish-bred, French-trained horse which won the Prix du Jockey Club in 1979. At stud he also sired Toulon, winner of the St Leger Stakes, Pistolet Bleu (Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud), Saint Estephe (Coronation Cup) and Shardari.[2] Her dam Delsy also produced Darshaan, who won the 1984 Prix du Jockey Club and went on to become a leading sire.[3] The filly was sent into training with Alain de Royer-Dupre at Chantilly and usually raced in a sheepskin noseband.[4]

Racing career[edit]

Darara's small size and delicate constitution made her difficult to train and she did not appear on a racecourse until June 1986, when she won the Prix Albaraelle,[5] a maiden race over 2000 metres at Saint-Cloud Racecourse. She then finished second in a Listed race at Evry Racecourse before being moved up in class to contest the Group Three Prix de Psyche at Deauville in August. Ridden by Yves Saint-Martin, she won by one and a half lengths from the British-trained Cocotte.[4]

In September, Darara was moved up to Group One class for the Prix Vermeille over 2400 metres at Longchamp Racecourse. The Prix de Diane winner Lacovia was made the odds-on favourite, with Darara third in the betting on 3.8/1. Saint-Martin sent the filly into the lead in the straight and she accelerated clear of her seven opponents to win easily by five lengths from Reloy. Following his filly's success, the Aga Khan opted to pay a 250,000 supplementary fee to enter the filly in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.[4] The Aga Khan's four-horse entry for the race on 5 October, comprising Darara, Shardari, Shahrastani and the pacemaker Dihistan, started at combined odds of 9/2 in an exceptionally strong field which included Dancing Brave, Bering, Acatenango and Triptych.[6] Darara was among the leaders in the straight, but weakened in the closing stages to finish sixth of the fifteen runners, four lengths behind the winner Dancing Brave. On her final appearance, Darara was sent to California to contest the Breeders' Cup Turf at Santa Anita Park on 1 November. She was never is serious contention[6] and finished eighth of the nine runners behind Manila.[4]


In 1986, the independent Timeform organisation awarded Darara a rating of 129, placing her alongside the one-mile specialist Sonic Lady as the best three-year-old filly in Europe. In the International Classification rated her the best three-year-old filly over 11 furlongs plus with a rating of 126.

Stud record[edit]

Darara was retired from racing to become a broodmare at her owners stud. In 1994 Darara was offered for sale and bought for 470,000 Irish guineas on behalf of Lord and Lady Lloyd Webber and was moved to the Watership Down Stud in Berkshire.[7] Darara failed to produce a foal for several years after moving to Berkhire but recovered her fertility after a pioneering procedure involving the "flushing" of her fallopian tubes.[8]

She was a highly successful broodmare, producing four winners of Group One flat races and one Grade I winning steeplechaser. Her offspring included:

Darara was retired from breeding after foaling Rewilding in 2007 and died in June 2012 at the age of twenty-nine.[7]


Pedigree of Darara (IRE), bay mare, 1983[1]
Top Ville (IRE)
High Top (IRE)
Derring-Do Darius
Sipsey Bridge
Camenae Vimy
Sega Ville (FR)
Charlottesville Prince Chevalier
La Sega Tantieme
La Danse
Delsy (FR)
Abdos (FR)
Arbar Djebel
Pretty Lady Umidwar
La Moqueuse
Kelty (FR)
Venture Relic
Rose O' Lynn
Marilla Marsyas
Albanilla (Family: 13-c)[3]


  1. ^ a b "Darara pedigree". equineline.com. 2012-05-08. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  2. ^ "Top Ville". Aga Khan Studs. Retrieved 2013-08-10. 
  3. ^ a b "Thoroughbred Bloodlines - Stray Shot - Family 13-c". Bloodlines.net. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  4. ^ a b c d Timeform staff (1987). Racehorses of 1986. Timeform. ISBN 0-900599-44-8. 
  5. ^ "DARARA". Aga Khan Studs. Retrieved 2013-08-19. 
  6. ^ a b "Dar Re Mi looks top of the scale; Curragh Group 1 winner could prove big hit as broodmare". Racing Post. 2 July 2009. Retrieved 2013-08-19. 
  7. ^ a b  By Tom Pennington 12:52PM 12 JUN 2012  (12 June 2012). "Darara dam of four Group 1 winners dies". Bloodstock.racingpost.com. Retrieved 2013-08-19. 
  8. ^ "Darara dies at 29". Thoroughbred Owner & Breeder Magazine. 12 June 2012. Retrieved 2013-08-19. 
  9. ^ "Dariyoun race record". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  10. ^ "Darazari race record". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  11. ^ "Kilimanjaro race record". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  12. ^ "Rhagaas | Record By Race Type". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  13. ^ "River Dancer race record". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  14. ^ "Dar Re Mi race record". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 
  15. ^ "Rewilding race record". Racing Post. Retrieved 2013-08-18. 

External links[edit]