A 200,000gns yearling purchase by Tony Nerses, Sayif came from the first crop of the Green Desert stallion Kheleyf.
A half-brother to the very useful sprinter Hunter Street, he was quick to come to hand for Peter Chapple-Hyam, running a short-head second on his first start, at Windsor, in the May of his juvenile season.
His next three races were all at Group Two level, and he placed on each occasion, finishing runner-up in the July Stakes, third in Glorious Goodwood’s Vintage Stakes and then third again, beaten just three-quarters of a length by subsequent Group One winner Lord Shanakill, in Newbury’s Mill Reef Stakes.
He then stepped up to the top level in Newmarket’s Gr.1 Middle Park Stakes, in which he was second of nine to Bushranger.
Sayif went into the winter close season with a rating of 122 and it was no surprise when he landed a conditions race on his first start as a three-year-old. Soon he was again making his presence felt at the top level. He was not beaten far in the Gr.1 Prix Maurice de Gheest and Gr.1 Haydock Sprint Cup, before he duly gained reward with victory in the Gr.2 Diadem Stakes at Ascot.
He was subsequently sent to the USA to join Patrick Biancone, for whom he won the Listed Battlefield Stakes and ran placed at Grade 3 level.