Richard Brown of Blandford Bloodstock has been named the Federation of Bloodstock Agent’s (FBA) Bloodstock Agent of 2022 for the second consecutive year.

Brown won last year’s award primarily in recognition of the achievements of top two-year-old Perfect Power, purchased as a breezer, and while that colt contributed once again to the agent’s success this season by capturing the Commonwealth Cup, he was arguably overshadowed by the Derby winner Desert Crown, a 280,000gns Tattersalls October Book 2 yearling purchase from his breeder Strawberry Fields Stud.

“When Richard Brown of Blandford Bloodstock received his FBA Bloodstock Agent prize last year, he told me that he was determined to win it again in 2022,” said Geoffrey Howson, honorary president of the FBA. “I replied that the only way he could receive the award two years running was to have bought the winner of The Derby.

“Immediately after his Book 2 yearling purchase, Desert Crown, won the Derby, he texted me “Told you I wanted another bottle of Krug”!

“Other Group 1 winners bought at public auction by Richard were Perfect Power (Commonwealth Cup) and Durston (Caufield Cup), as well as stakes winners Swingalong (Lowther Stakes, Gr.2), Desert Icon (JRA Cup, Gr.3), Mighty Ulysses (Sir Henry Cecil Stakes, Listed), Haqeeqy (President’s Cup, Listed), Umm Kulthum (Kilvington Stakes, Listed).

“As recorded last year, Richard has continued to impress me with his continued work ethic in the mould of his mentor, Joss Collins, of professionalism and enthusiasm. I have told Richard that the only way he can win again in 2023 is to have bought the winner of the Triple Crown!”

Richard Brown (second left) receives his prize from Geoffrey Howson (left) flanked by Gary Robinson of Strawberry Fields Stud and Ed Player. Photo – Laura Green

Fittingly, Brown received his prize at the exact spot in the ring from where he landed the winning bid for Desert Crown.

“It’s a real team effort,” he said. “Tom [Goff] bought Emily Upjohn, who obviously won the Group 1 at Ascot, Stu [Boman] bought Zaaki, who’s been a superstar in Australia, and Biggsy [Tom Biggs] bought Bradsell, who won the Coventry Stakes. So it’s a huge team effort.” 

Looking back to the day he bought Desert Crown, he said: “Nathaniel is a thoroughly proven stallion. At the time he had Enable although he was probably short of a top colt. He was a gorgeous looking yearling. He was that rare physical that you have to chase. [Owner] Saeed Suhail was brave – when you find one you really want he’s great. I’m very lucky to buy for people who will back your opinion. And Perfect Power has been a great horse for Sheikh Rashid.”

Unbeaten in three starts, Desert Crown hasn’t been seen since his Derby romp but hopes remain high that he will be a force to be reckoned with next year. 

“Desert Crown picked up a minor injury after the Derby,” said Brown. “It put him out for long enough that it would have kept him out of the Arc, and that was the only race really left for him. So the decision was made to put him away. He spent six weeks out in the stallion paddocks at Darley and went back to Sir Michael’s a couple of weeks ago – I gather he went in looking amazing. He’ll have a long, steady prep from now on and hopefully will target all those top middle-distance races.

“I think he’s still an untapped talent. But he’ll be tested next year – Emily Upjohn probably being one of them!”

Desert Crown; bought by Richard Brown as a yearling. Photo – Bill Selwyn