Former undefeated Stakes winning juvenile Fighting Sun sired his first winner over the weekend at Trentham in New Zealand with the Victorian bred Platinum Mam’selle saluting.

Trained by Lisa Latta from Awapuni, the two-year-old bay filly was perfectly ridden by Mark Du Plessis in the two-year-old race over 1200 metres.

Swinging for home, the athletic filly stacked the leaders a good margin, but by the 200, Platinum Mam’selle was in overdrive going two to their one to run away by a narrow, but decisive victory in the end.

A solid 2nd on debut in December over 1100-metres behind the much hyped Sword Of Osman, the Lisa Latta trained filly clearly appreciated the extra half furlong.

Latta will now aim her at Group races before a possible tilt at the Group 1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Awapuni in the autumn.

Bred by Milford Thoroughbreds, the two-year-old filly by Fighting Sun was an $80,000 Adelaide Magic Millions Yearling Sale buy in 2017 from the draft of Woodside Park Stud.

The youngster is out of the winning Redoute’s Choice Dam Miss Fascination and is her second named foal.

Fighting Sun, Victoria’s boom stallion, has covered over 550 mares in his first four seasons including 143 mares in 2017.

His yearlings sold well at last week’s Magic Millions sale with Sun Stud’s colt out of Westchester going to Boomer Bloodstock for $220,000. Noorilim Park’s colt out of Silver Barbie sold to Spicer Thoroughbreds for $160,000.

Interestingly, of the five two-year-old runners Fighting Sun has had so far, none have run worse than fourth place including the Mick Price trained Fighting Harada looking very promising running second on debut on Boxing Day.

Fighting Sun has four yearlings catalogued for the upcoming Inglis Classic Sale and a further 17 at the upcoming 2018 Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale which can all be viewed here.

There must have been celebrations on the north bank of Avenel’s Hughes Creek on Saturday evening.

Valda Klaric and Ivan Cajkusic together with Richard Kerry and Jarrod Byers of Avenel’s Millford Thoroughbreds were responsible for the breeding of a pair of talented two-year-old winners that Saturday afternoon.

First to take in the glory was the Millford bred Platinum Mam’selle at Trentham in New Zealand. The filly was the first ever winner for her sire Fighting Sun.

She had been sold by Millford to New Zealand via the Magic Millions Adelaide Yearling Sale for $80,000.

Not long the NZ win, Al Dorama bred by Valda and Ivan at Millford won the opener at Flemington.

The Robert Smerdon trained colt was strong in the finish with the youngster extending and moving away from his rivals for an impressive win.

A graduate of Millford’s 2017 Inglis Premier Sale draft, he was purchased for $180,000 by former Racing Victoria director Barbara Saunders – a successful breeder in her own right.

“He did an excellent job, and he’s shown us a lot of promise. We haven’t raced too many two-year-olds over the years. He’s a very smart one,” Saunders said following the race with a VOBIS Gold race in mind as a future start for the colt.

Al Dorama (Al Maher) is the first foal out of Valda and Ivan’s talented homebred race filly Love For Ransom (Red Ransom).

Valda remembered the colt fondly as a yearling, being a striking individual.

“He was a neat package, with a lovely big walk. He was very well put together. The pedigrees matched so we thought it was a suitable mating for our mare and she has produced a very good product,” Valda said.

“He was extremely popular at the sales, and we were so pleased that Barbara purchased him. She has given him every opportunity for a good future.”

Love For Ransom was a dual city winner which included an extraordinary come-from-behind win at Moonee Valley as a three-year-old. She is a half-sister to Valda and Ivan’s Group 2 winner French Emotion.

Her grand dam, the Group 1 Oaks winner, My Brilliant Star, boasts in her black type family Shot Of Thunder and Celebrity Princess.

Love For Ransom has a lovely Toronado yearling filly – that Valda will either retain to race or offer at the Inglis VOBIS Yearling Sale, – and an outstanding Trust In A Gust foal.

“He is a beautiful foal, very well put together, and well developed,” Valda said.

“Breeding certainly isn’t a quick process, it takes years, but hopefully if you keep working at it, you get the rewards like we did on the weekend.”

“Millford is doing very well. Richard and Jarrod do a great job with their yearling preparation and the business operations. They are travelling along very nicely, and most importantly they are getting the winners coming off the farm.”

What an exceptional week it was for Woodside Park Stud’s Written Tycoon.

The Champion stallion was proudly flying the flag for the Victorian thoroughbred industry with exceptional sales results and winners around the country.

On the track, Mr Money Bags won at Flemington,  Tversky scored on the Sunshine Coast, while the sire had the quinella in the Listed Tasmanian Guineas with Overplay narrowly beating the cleverly named Double You Tee.

The David Miller-trained and bred three-year-old colt Overplay provided the son of Iglesia with his 22nd stakes winner and helped bump his seasonal progeny earnings to nearly $3.5 million including 90 individual winners.

Unsurprisingly, Victoria’s Champion Sire of the past two seasons was also a hit at the Magic Millions sale on the Gold Coast.

His 2016 crop of yearlings were in abundance like never before at this international profile sale but that didn’t mean they sold for any less.

Woodside themselves offered seven Written Tycoon youngsters, and with 100% clearance they were in high demand from the start.

The first colt to be offered was out of the Favelon mare La Paris and quickly snapped up by China Horse Club agent Michael Wallace for $520,000 – at the time a sales record for a Woodside draft yearling.

“He was very popular, with over 200 parades throughout the week. He handled that with ease, he never turned a hair and we knew that would stand him in good stead for people looking at him as a potential stallion prospect,” Woodside’s Matt Tillett said.

The farm’s previously mentioned sales record only lasted a few days.

On Saturday night, Lot 803, an outstanding colt out of the Octagonal mare, Hill Street Blue was sold to Aquis Farm for $625,000.

“I loved him from the moment we saw him. He vetted clean and had a real presence about him. He is the colt we have been waiting the whole sale for,” Aquis Farm’s Shane McGrath said.

Two other Written Tycoon yearlings were sold for $600,000 or more at the Gold Coast sale.

The Mill Park offered brother to Group 2 Thousand Guineas Prelude winner Booker was sold to Bruce Perry Bloodstock for $600,000 on Day 1 of the sale.

Day 2 saw the Glenlogan Park flashy colt from the city winning mare, Show Affection, sold to the China Horse Club/Newgate/Winstar partnership for $625,000.

Overall, Written Tycoon was again the leading Victorian stallion on the Coast, averaging $278,913 with over 23 lots sold, and was the eighth leading stallion nationally by average and ninth by aggregate.

“We never could have dreamt it. These yearlings were off Written’s $18,000 service fee. It is a fabulous return for all the Victorian breeders that supported him a number of years ago,” Tillett said.

It was certainly a day you needed shades, with the Zoustar sired filly, Sunlight lighting up the Gold Coast and stamping her class with an exceptional win in the $2 million Magic Millions Two-year-old Classic.

The big result along with the strong yearling sales results at last week’s Magic Millions Sale will certainly put a smile on Victorian breeders who sent their mares to the Woodside Park based Zoustar in 2015 and 2017.

After a torrid start to the field, Sunlight settled and sat off the leader Ef Troop before cruising to a stunning two-length victory, prompting her trainer Tony McEvoy to now set his sights on the Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes.

“Why wouldn’t we chase the Golden Slipper? She has shown today she is a very smart filly,” McEvoy said.

And to reiterate just how much he thinks of the brilliant filly, McEvoy paid $600,000 for Sunlight’s full sister, out of the dual Group 3 winner Solar Charged, twice what he paid for the exceptional daughter of Zoustar.

“I have got three two-year-olds by Zoustar in my stable and that’s not enough. I wish I had bought more,” McEvoy said.

“He (Zoustar) was a great racehorse and he is throwing tremendous types. They have got great depth and I think trainers love them because you can train them because of the balance and athleticism that they have got. I am happy to continue to support him.”

Zoustar’s second crop of yearlings – conceived in Victoria – averaged $277,045 at the sale

Zoustar’s top lot for the sale came late in the book, with lot 716, an outstanding filly from Farasha (Jeune) selling for $800,000 to China Horse Club’s Michael Wallace.

The colt out of Farasha was Zoustar’s highest priced Magic Millions yearling selling for $800,000

“She was the exceptional athlete of the sale and it is great to have her,” Wallace said.

“The $800,000 result was brilliant for Zoustar and it was evidence for us that lots of stables  have lots of (2YO) Zoustars that they really like. The support for him was just phenomenal. The prices reflect the high esteem the owners and trainers hold him in.” Woodside’s Murray Tillett said.

With Zoustar and Written Tycoon both in the Top 10 of sires by average prices, Woodside Park Stud now stands among the very best stallion farms in Australia.

“Nationally, the stallions are equal to any and they are a wonderful endorsement for the Victorian breeding industry,” Tillett said.

A record number of Victorian bred lots are readying themselves for the auction ring at Magic Millions’ sale complex on the Gold Coast.

With Victorian bred Group 1 winning sale graduates Redzel and Global Glamour taking all before them in recent times, the search is on for the next Victorian bred Group 1 winner.

No less than 137 lots in the seasonal sale opener have been signed up to Super VOBIS with 108 of those eligible for the new $1.5 million VOBIS Sires race series.

All of those lots will be able to compete for close to $24 million in VOBIS bonuses and prizemoney every coming racing season.

Incoming Magic Millions Bloodstock Manager Clint Donovan has run the ruler over the Super VOBIS lots and identified a few of the highlights:

  • Lot 12 – Makybe’s Snitzel x La Fluorescent: Deep girth, big hips, and by Snitzel equals a fast filly. She certainly looks the part, and is bred to be back here in 12 months in the big race.
  • Lot 13 – Woodside Park’s Written Tycoon x La Paris (bred by Woodside): This handsome colt is by outstanding Woodside Park stallion Written Tycoon, the winner of the Thoroughbred Breeders’ Victoria Champion Sire Award for the past two years.
  • Lot 73 – Rosemont Stud’s Brazen Beau x Medici Madonna: By champion racehorse and first season sire Brazen Beau, this purposeful colt is built to be fast and will be popular.
  • Lot 137 – Written Tycoon x Noondie: This well-bred colt is a full-brother to Group 2 winner Booker. He’s dripping with quality and has plenty of scope.
  • Lot 150 – The Wow Signal x Oomaroo: By The Wow Signal, the Group 1-winning son of Starspangledbanner, this colt is a real standout.
  • Lot 395 – Noorilim Park’s Dissident x Top Classic: Horse of the year Dissident is represented by this quality offering from Noorilim Park Thoroughbreds. A great mover with a lot of presence.
  • Lot 542 – Three Bridges’ Brazen Beau x Bella Jewel: A sharp-looking colt by Brazen Beau, he is a compact and well-muscled individual.
  • Lot 710 – Shooting To Win x Fairchild: By Darley’s Shooting to Win out of a speedy two-year-old mare by General Nediym who has three wins from three races, this fellow ticks all the boxes.
  • Lot 820 – Musk Creek Farm’s I Am Invincible X If I Can I Can (NZ): A potential superstar, this filly is out of a Stakes-winning mare and by star sire I Am Invincible.
  • Lot 831 – Sun Stud’s Tapit (USA) x Inventive (USA): By international super sire Tapit and a half-sister to a Group 1-winning two-year-old, she’s got the pedigree to back up her good looks and wonderful action.
  • Lot 833 – Woodside Park’s Zoustar x Invested Capital (GB): A physically impressive Zoustar colt that fills the eye, buyers will fall in love with his fluent movement.

Added to that list of Super VOBIS yearlings are the likes of:

  • Lot 330 Zoustar x Solar Charged – the full sister to Magic Millions co-favourite Sunlight)
  • Lot 531 Rushton Park’s Helmet x Bardego filly – a half-sister to last week’s NZ Group 1 winner Volpe Veloce
  • Lot 767 the Makybe bred Snitzel x Gold Anthem – a half-brother to Champion sprinter Starspangledbanner
  • Lot 768 Lauriston Thoroughbreds’ Snitzel x Gold Edition filly – the daughter of superstar multiple Group 1 winning filly Gold Edition
  • Lot 1059 Three Bridges’ Unencumbered x Tangerine Dream – a half-brother to Group 1 winner Pear Tart

There are also a large number of first crop yearlings of Victorian sires including Toronado, Hampton Court and Brazen Beau.

A full list of the 137 Super VOBIS nominated lots is available via Magic Millions Catalogue.

Woodside Park Stud used the opportunity of the high profile Magic Millions sale on the Gold Coast this week to announce that it will be standing dual Australian Group 1 winner, Tosen Stardom (JPN) at stud in the spring of 2018.

The announcement is a further international vote of confidence in Victoria’s breeding sector considering the stallion’s part-owner Mr Katsumi Yoshida will be sending mares to him.

Mr Yoshida of Northern Farm in Japan is one of the world’s most successful breeders and racehorse owners. He stands Japan’s multiple Champion sire, Deep Impact, who is the sire of Tosen Stardom.

As a loyal advocate of the Victorian breeding industry, Woodside principal Mark Rowsthorn is proud to provide mare owners with the opportunity to tap into the renowned bloodlines Tosen Stardom posesses.

“Tosen Stardom’s pedigree is extremely well regarded internationally through his sire, Deep Impact and in his strong female line.

“We are excited to offer this fantastic opportunity to Australian breeders and in particular, to those in Victoria and we are delighted to develop an association with his Japanese owners, Northern Farm’s Mr Yoshida and Mr Shimakawa,” Mr Rowsthorn said.

Experienced syndicators Australian Bloodstock purchased a significant stake in Tosen Stardom on his second visit to Australia and transferred the promising stallion to leading trainer Darren Weir.

Darren was convinced of the horse’s ability after he broke free in the straight to win his first Group 1 in the Toorak Handicap.

“Tosen Stardom has everything it takes to be one of the great stallions in this country, he’s got the pedigree, the ability and now he’s got the group 1,” Weir said.

In the Group 1 Emirates Stakes at Flemington, he emphatically stamped his superiority, showing his true colours with a late explosive surge and freakish turn of foot to claim victory, despite being hampered by heavy traffic.

He has also recorded a number of Group 1 placings with a second to Black Heart Bart in the Futurity Stakes, and a close third behind Vega Magic and Black Heart Bart in the Memsie Stakes. His earnings now exceed $3.3 million.

“Woodside Park Stud is the premier stud in Victoria and, through Written Tycoon and Zoustar, we have broken the myth and proved that you can stand a top line-up of stallions down south,” Rowsthorn said.

“I believe that Victorian breeders have demonstrated that they will support the local studs if we provide the right product, and Tosen Stardom will beautifully complement our existing draft of stallions to offer a diverse spread of sire lines.”

“Tosen Stardom is seen as a Victorian horse, a Weir horse. He is a middle-distance star, with an incredible turn of foot. He was a very successful undefeated, stakes winning two-year-old which will suit the owners and breeders that strive for immediate success.”

Carrying the famous blue, black and white checks of the Australian Bloodstock colours, Tosen Stardom was a clever acquisition by Managing Director Jamie Lovett.

“We have long held the view that Tosen Stardom was potentially the best international horse to race in the Southern Hemisphere, and our brief to our Japanese partners was to secure his future at stud.

“They (his Japanese owners) were very pleased with the Group 1 mile race but after his 2000m WFA Emirates win Mr.Yoshida made the comment: ‘he is a stallion now’.

With only three Deep Impact sire sons available to breeders outside of Japan, Tosen Stardom brings unique value to Victorian mares, providing an international outcross free from Danzig bloodlines.

Tosen Stardom became the Japanese-based Deep Impact’s 31st Group 1 winner and his only dual Australian Group 1 winner.

Tosen Stardom will race over the autumn for Darren Weir before beginning his new career at Woodside Park Stud later in the year. Darren is looking forward to seeing what he can do this campaign which may include runs in the Orr, the Futurity, the Australian Cup and back to Sydney for the Queen Elizabeth.

“Tosen Stardom is right up there with the best horses I have trained…I will be supporting him at stud by sending mares to him and recommending my clients to do the same,” trainer Darren Weir said.

For more information, please contact Sam Fairgray or Matt Tillett at Woodside Park Stud on 03 5424 8166 or visit

A new and highly rewarding category has been added to the 2018 Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards, in their fourth year of honouring and acknowledging participants across Australia’s thoroughbred industry.

Along with the six categories available previously, the Newcomer Award will highlight outstanding stud and stable staff members who have been in the industry for a maximum of three years.

The Newcomer Award will draw special attention to nominees who have shown a willingness to improve, to advance their skills and display special enthusiasm and motivation.

The Newcomer Award, announced at the GSSSA 2018 launch on the Gold Coast on January 9, is one of seven awards now available to all industry staff from stablehands to work riders, to horse breakers, to office staff and participants in horse welfare.

The Awards, conducted by Thoroughbred Breeders Australia and Racing Australia, also offer an overall Thoroughbred Excellence prize, which has, so far, launched a young trainer’s new career, has recognised the vital role of those who spend each night during the foaling season monitoring pregnant mares and acknowledged the ever-more-demanding role of the racing manager.

In 2017 the Thoroughbred Excellence Award went to Jeremy Rogers, the man who keeps the “backstage” areas of Australia’s biggest stable functioning.

As racing manager for Victorian trainer Darren Weir, Rogers handles everything from nominations, acceptances and jockey bookings to owner liaison and the racing programs of hundreds of horses.

“In truth, I was staggered to be nominated,” said Rogers, who was also successful in the Dedication to Racing category.

“You get into this business because you love it, and with a bit of luck you get to love it more and more. You don’t expect to be patted on the back, you just get on with it.

“It was a huge result just to be nominated, then to be a finalist and then to be recognised as the overall winner was unbelievable. For Godolphin to care enough to sponsor these awards is one of the greatest things I’ve known in racing.”

Jenny Watson won the Excellence Award in 2016 for her work as foaling supervisor at Armidale Stud where she has been helping mares and foals get through the most delicate stage of their lives for 35 years.

And in 2015 the Excellence prize went to Mark Newnham for his exemplary service as stable foreman for Gai Waterhouse.

By the time he received his Award, Newnham had set up his own stable and is now a successful trainer.

Since their inception, the Awards have acknowledged outstanding talent, contribution and dedication, not only among the winners, but all who have entered.

Diana Cooper, Godolphin’s global charities advisor says of the Awards, “The Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards are a powerful example of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed’s commitment to, and passion for thoroughbred horse racing and breeding worldwide, and we are excited to sponsor the 2018 Awards once again in Australia.”

“To reward excellence in all areas of the racing and breeding industry, particularly amongst those who aren’t necessarily in the front line, is something Godolphin sees as an important component of what we do on a global scale.

Racing Australia CEO Barry O’Farrell said: “We hope to achieve a record number of nominations in 2018 from both regional and metropolitan areas across all states and territories. Trainers, owners, stud managers and racing and breeding colleagues are all keen to recognise the outstanding dedication and hard work of their staff.”

“We all know that the hard work and commitment of staff is the cornerstone of our industry – without that there is no Spring Carnival, no Championships, no major sales. These awards celebrate that dedication and we are proud to continue to support them.”

Tom Reilly, Thoroughbred Breeders Australia CEO said, “I encourage all breeders, trainers, owners and administrators to nominate their unsung heroes and thank the Australian breeding and racing industries in advance for supporting the 2018 Australian Godolphin Stud and Stable Staff Awards.”

“We look forward to this event continuing to establish itself as the pinnacle of staff awards in Australian racing and breeding.”

Awards are offered in the categories of Dedication to Racing, Dedication to Breeding, Leadership, Horsemanship, Thoroughbred Care and Welfare, Administration and Ancillary Services and, for the first time, the Newcomer category.

The winner of each of the established GSSSA categories receives $10,000 with $1000 going to the runners-up and $3000 to be shared among each winner’s work colleagues with the Thoroughbred Excellence Award carrying an additional $5000 prize.

In addition, a donation is made to Award winner’s stud or stable, to facilitate a celebration for their staff, in order that all those around the Award winner can enjoy and celebrate the success.

The Newcomer Award offers a return trip to Dubai and an extensive program including visits to Godolphin’s winter base at Marmoom Stables and a tour of Zabeel Stables, one of the original racing stables established in Dubai.

The winner will also tour the Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum Centre for Cultural Understanding, a personal initiative of Godolphin’s founder and ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed.

The 2018 Award winners will be chosen by a selection panel chaired by Chairman of Stewards, South Australia, Johan Petzer and comprised of individuals representing TBA,TRSA, Racing Victoria, Sky Racing Channel and in addition to trainers Ron Quinton, Mark Newnham and Troy Corstens.

Nominations are open until midnight AEST Monday 19 February, 2018 and can be made by anyone within the racing and breeding industry.

Full details and nomination forms are available at the GSSSA website.

Clarkefield’s Ruth Frenzel was delighted when the filly she bred, Magnesium Rose, claimed her first city win at Caulfield over 1100 metres on Sunday.

Ridden to victory by Craig Williams in a three-year-old benchmark 70 Handicap for rookie trainer Matt Lindsay, the chestnut 3YO daughter of Magnus was also his first city winner.

A real case of ‘sometimes things happen for a reason’, Magnesium Rose is a wonderful story of chance, fate and a bit of luck for Ruth Frenzel.

“I had marked Magnesium Rose’s dam’s page out in the Inglis March mixed sale catalogue,” Ruth said.

“I loved her pedigree being by Royal Academy, out of a great family, but unfortunately I was too sick to attend the sale as I had just been diagnosed with breast cancer.

“She was knocked down for $500, and I thought, that was that, but when she popped up on, and it was my birthday, I bought her as a cheer up present for myself.

“She was in foal to Bon Hoffa, and except for a photo, I bought her sight unseen. It was a real gamble.”

“However, when she got off the truck, I thought, what have I done? I have made a big blue here! She had front legs only a mother would love, walked with her head on the side from possibly having a broken neck, and to top it all off, she had a real mean streak and would go for me in the paddock.”

The mare, nicknamed Petal (from her race name Light Rose, rather than her kind disposition), Ruth sent her to Romsey’s Supreme Thoroughbreds for foaling down.

“I remember calling Adrianne Grayling, and asking how’s Petal? To which she replied… She’s no *%$@* Petal! She may love you, but she doesn’t love me!”

Light Rose has since turned out to be a real bargain and has turned into a very sweet mare.

“You can’t get rid of her now, she waits for me at the gate. She is a great mum, she teaches her foals manners, and they are all lovely to handle.”

The resulting Bon Hoffa foal was surprisingly an absolute knockout.  With an unusual gestation period of almost 12 months to the day, all of Light Rose’s foals have been well over (but beautifully cooked!).

“They come out straight, well developed and strong. For a small mare, I don’t know how she does it.”

The Bon Hoffa, named Helluva Hoffa was sold to Queensland and has turned into a brilliant campaigner with an exceptional race record. From only 15 starts, he has had four wins, three seconds and two thirds.

“I then sent Light Rose to Magnus, as I loved the cross, and she produced Magnesium Rose. She was a beautiful liver chestnut filly, drop dead gorgeous, so I nicknamed her Miranda, after beautiful Miranda from Hanging Rock.

“Miranda always fancied herself. Even Brent (Grayling) at Supreme said she had tickets on herself and called her a ‘glamour puss’.”

As a yearling Magnesium Rose didn’t make the Inglis Premier Sale catalogue being a little on the small side, so she was entered in the Inglis VOBIS Gold Sale and was cleverly picked out by her trainer Matt Lindsay.

“Miranda has now made $125,250 in just four starts, including $37,900 in VOBIS bonuses which is wonderful for Matt and his family…and all her first-time owners,” Ruth said.

“As a breeder, if you don’t get the price through the ring that you were after, make sure you get them to a good trainer; then at least you get the VOBIS bonus! I will be looking forward to getting a cheque on behalf of my Miranda.”

Light Petal now has a Warrior’s Reward colt foal on the ground, which Ruth enthuses is a “super type”.

Matt Lindsay has already been up to Ruth’s Clarkefield farm and looked at the foal.

“I have told Matt I will definitely send him some horses, as he is doing a wonderful job with Miranda. I think this young guy can really train, and he has learnt from one of the best,” Ruth said.

“Light Rose was a birthday present to myself, I needed her, and she needed me to look after her, and now she is paying me back in spades.”

It was a landmark day at Caulfield on Sunday for Larneuk Stud and resident sire O’Lonhro.

Stud principal Neville Murdoch cheered home not one, but two well-deserved victories at Caulfield for his sire with O’Lonera and Mamzelle Tess both saluting.

“To get two Caulfield victories was fabulous for the farm and fabulous for the stallion. He deserves to get city runs on the board like that, and in fact, he had a treble, with La Rita at Warrnambool too,” Murdoch said.

“This is a wonderful reminder to breeders of the exceptional value stallions that stand in Victoria.

“Let’s just hope we can get another couple to go bang, bang, and away we go.”

Bred by Lynne Alderson and trained by daughter Cindy, O’Lonera showed both his talent and versatility at his favourite track, clocking up his fourth win at Caulfield.

O’Lonera will target races at Caulfield as much as possible in the future, with his ten runs returning $315,300 from $468,000 total prize money for his connections.

He is also a VOBIS success story having earned close to $210,000 in VOBIS bonuses or prize money including a win in the $180,000 VOBIS Gold Stayers race in 2016.

“We are delighted to see O’Lonera doing so well,” said Neville Murdoch.

“We have always known that O’Lonhro has what it takes to produce quality performers and are very much looking forward to seeing how far O’Lonera goes.”

The ultra-consistent city-class performer Mamzelle Tess was the second winner of the day for O’Lonhro, in the Alice Mosley Handicap over 1100 metres for trainers Leon and Troy Corstens.

“She was bred by a lovely lady, Margaret Naismith (from Geelong), who will be just ecstatic with the win. She is giving Margaret and her large group of excited owners plenty to cheer about,” Neville said.

“Margaret breeds her horses to race and owns them outright all the way through…and inviting family and good friends to join her as owners.”

“Mamzelle Tess is a 100% product of Larneuk, bred here and grown here, until she went down to the Corstens stable to be trained. Her dam helped as a nanny in her later years, sadly only passing away a week ago,” Murdoch said.

O’Lonhro was a record-breaking winner of the Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes and has been represented by a stream of winners including the likes of O’Lonh Star, Chelsarli, Big Reel and O’Lordy.

Larneuk Stud sire O’Lonhro

“His percentage on runners to winners is brilliant, and the strike rate shows he is a very proficient stallion. Results like this prove he should not be underestimated,” Murdoch said.

For more information about O’Lonhro, contact Neville Murdoch on 03 5790 3204 or 0428 500 418.

Farms all over the country are in sales mode at the Magic Millions festival on the Gold Coast this week in the hope of selling the big fish, and one farm that keep growing out the killer whale is Victoria’s Rosemont Stud.

Having ramped up their operation in the past five years, Rosemont has been a regular source of stakes winners at all sales and in 2017 produced no fewer than four Group 1 winners (and was desperately unlucky not to make it five late in the year with the farm sold Fuhryk a certainty beaten in the Railway Stakes in Perth).

“I’ve got no doubt that buyers want to buy from farms that regularly produce results. Not just maiden winners, but big time winners that could ultimately be life-changers,” said Rosemont’s Anthony Mithen.

The year started for Rosemont with a classic winner sold through the Inglis Premier sale when Hey Doc saluted for Team McEvoy in the Australian Guineas.

An $85,000 Premier graduate, he was good enough later in the year to add another 2017 Group 1 when he won the iconic Manikato Stakes at Moonee Valley. Offered on behalf of Yarram breeder Adrian Hall, Hey Doc was prepared and offered at Inglis’ Oaklands sales complex by Rosemont.

Perhaps the most satisfying moment of Rosemont’s stellar 2017 came in the ATC Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes at Rosehill with the victory of Montoya’s Secret.

Bred by Rosemont, reared and raised to be presented at the NZB Karaka yearling sales, the filly was bought by Corstens Racing with Rosemont retaining a share to race.

“She has lived her whole life at the farm either growing out or spelling or pre-training when not at Corstens’ Flemington stables. She will be aimed at another autumn campaign in 2018,” Mithen said.

The Ciaron Maher trained Ruthven kept the Classics rolling on for Rosemont, with the son of Domesday bred at the farm by Victorian businessman Paul Roach who retained him to race with mates.

Left to benefit from growing out on the rolling hills at Rosemont, he developed into a high class three-year-old who was the subject of a massive sale to Hong Kong following his dominant Queensland Derby win in June.

And the Spring Carnival kicked off in fine style for Rosemont graduates when farm born, reared and sold gelding Santa Ana Lane won the Group 1 Rupert Clarke Stakes at Caulfield for trainer Anthony Freedman.

“It’s a record we are all very proud of at Rosemont. We love our racing and race quite a few ourselves, but to see four – nearly five – of our products salute at the highest level for happy clients and friends, we get a strong sense of satisfaction,” Mithen said.

“I’m not sure all the buyers realise how much goes into presenting the best possible product at the sales so the buyer gets every chance to succeed with our horses. No stone is left unturned.”

The break-out year follows recent success of other Rosemont bred and/or sold horses such as Alboran Sea (South African Champion filly and three times Group 1 winner), Of The Brave (Group 3 winner), Gold Ambition (Group 1 placed), Kamacite (stakes winner) and Toffee Nose (Group 3-placed).

“Our team have worked so hard to get the four colts and five fillies to the top of their game for this year’s Millions. We can’t wait to show everyone our horses and let them pick who will be the Group 1 ace (or aces) in the pack,” Mithen said.

Champion trainer Peter Moody has assessed Rosemont’s 2018 Magic Millions draft and gives his thoughts in this video:

You could have heard Victorian breeder Greg Peters cheering at Caulfield from Chatswood Stud near Seymour when his homebred son of Reward For Effort saluted over 1200 metres on Sunday.

Greg Peters is a student of form (and supposedly the Beach Boys songs after which his winner Sheriff John Stone is named after). He follows each of his gallopers with passion and enthusiasm.

“Sheriff John Stone has been a great horse and he has a very consistent record, with places in ten  out of sixteen starts,” Greg said.

“His three runs at Caulfield have all had valid excuses…in hindsight there were a couple he should have won, (but) that’s what racing is all about, you can’t win them all.

“I was down at the stables this morning to give the Sheriff a pat and he looks to have pulled up well.

“His younger two-year-old sister is also now starting her career in the stable with Aaron, and looks very promising.”

Sheriff John Stone also has a talented three-year-old sister, Paseo Del Rio, who is currently in training with Aquanita’s Stuart Webb.

“I had my first share in a horse was when I was 20, but my patience was tested as it took 24 years ‘til my first winner, Best River and now I am up to about 220.

“Best River is the grand-dam of Sheriff John Stone. I still have her and hold her dear at the age of 21. There are photos everywhere of her in my home.”

“Sheriff John Stone is out of the four-time winning Skalato mare, River Bypass who is a half-sister to Riva San, who won the Group 1 Queensland Oaks and Derby double. Riva San is out of Best River, my first winner.”

“Chatswood Stud look after my horses very well, and the hills are a great asset. Their motto “Raised on the hills, to race on the flat”, has rung true, and is undoubtedly a contributing factor to my strike rate.”

“If they pass in (at the sales), like Sheriff John Stone did at the 2015 Inglis Premier, I will race them myself. I like to get a few friends involved and we all have a great time, it means so much more when you have bred them yourself.”

Chatswood Stud was, naturally, thrilled to see another city win recorded for their headline stallion, but even more so considering it was for a valued client.

“It is so good to see a deserved reward for breeder, owner and top bloke Greg Peters whose screams of victory were heard from Seymour,” Chatswood studmaster Greg Willis said.

“He has been great client of ours, with almost a dozen mares on farm. The dam, River Bypass has visited Reward For Effort five times, with a foal on the ground, and she is now back in foal to Reward To Effort.”

“Reward for Effort is consistently producing city winners, and there are plenty out there racing now.  As his mares just keep improving, it’s only a matter of time before his Group 1 winner comes along.”

Next week will mark the first major sale to sell and buy VOBIS Sires yearlings with no less than 115 eligible lots on offer at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale.

These youngsters are part of the crop of 2016 born Victorian sired foals that will fight it out for the inaugural $1 million Showdown at Caulfield in 2019.

Fourteen VOBIS Sires nominated stallions are represented with at least one lot in this first major yearling sale of the year.

Among them are headliners and proven sires such as Written Tycoon, Magnus, Reset, Street Boss and Helmet.

There are also the up-and-coming second crop sires who have had a handful of two0-year-olds hit the racetrack. These include Zoustar, Unencumbered and Fighting Sun.

Perhaps most exciting for the Victorian breeding industry is the appearance of a number of progeny of first crop sires including Darley’s Brazen Beau, Swettenham’s Toronado (IRE) and the Spendthrift Australia pair Hampton Court and Jimmy Creed (USA).

With the progeny of Brazen Beau dominating last year’s major weanling sales, the multiple Group 1 winning stallion certainly has a great chance to be the leading first crop sire at the sale.

Only VOBIS Sires eligible lots will be able to race in the exclusive $1 million Showdown 2YO race at Caulfield in 2019 followed by a $500,000 3YO race in 2020.

The full list of VOBIS Sires eligible lots at the Magic Millions Yearling Sale can be found on the VOBIS Sires website.

Sonia Carboni and her Glen Eden stallion Scintillo (GB) had more reason than usual to celebrate Christmas with the sire recording his first ever winner on Christmas Eve at Taree.

Sonia, who has the Glen Eden property just north of Kilmore, was thrilled that Scintillo could now tick off the first of many wins to come.

“It was the perfect Christmas present. He is just beautifully bred, and an Italian Champion. If he gets the mares, there is no doubt he will get the winners.” Carboni said.

The Mark Quinn trained filly Nashian fought off Sizzleonthebridge in a 1000 metre maiden for two-year-olds, and her trainer certainly believes there are more wins to come.

“We’ve always had a high opinion of her, and she’s done a good job as this is her first preparation,” Quinn said.

Nashian is one of 18 foals from the second crop of Scintillo (GB). As Scintillo’s first season at stud in 2013 was a trial of four mares, Nashian is part of his first real crop of two-year-olds.

Nashian is the first foal of the unraced Fastnet Rock mare Sakhra who is a granddaughter of the supremely talented Zabeel mare Nahayan who placed in the Group 1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas, Group 1 New Zealand Derby and Group 1 STC Ranvet Stakes without claiming a stakes victory.

A Group 1 winner as a two-year-old, Scintillo was crowned Champion 2YO colt in Italy in 2007. He raced in four countries at the top level including in the 2000 Irish Guineas, the King George VI and the Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Grand Prix De Saint-Cloud and the Japan Cup.

He is Fantastic Light’s highest rated son and is out of Thatching’s highest-rated mare, the Group 1 winner and Champion UK broodmare, Danseuse du Soir.

Scintillo was purchased by Victorian Len Lucas to be aimed at the 2010 Melbourne Cup under the guidance of Robbie Griffiths. After winning an trial impressively, he suffered a career-ending suspensory injury and a new career in the breeding barn beckoned.

“He could really fire as a stallion; we don’t know how good he is yet. As he has had limited books of mares, he can now get his chance. He certainly throws a very nice horse based on his yearlings and weanlings I have here,” Carboni said.

“He is beautifully bred with a lovely pedigree, and being the only son of Fantastic Light standing at stud, if breeders want to tap into that line, this is their opportunity,”

Scintillo is standing at Glen Eden for a negotiable fee of $3300 (Inc. GST). Please contact Sonia Carboni on 0407 811 411 or 03 5781 1411 for more information.

The Sun Stud bred Bel Sonic (Bel Esprit) has earned his trip to the Magic Millions Day at the Gold Coast following his exciting last-to-first win in the $150,000 VOBIS Gold Carat at Moonee Valley.

The impressive win and resulting VOBIS prize money earned helpeded catapult him up the Magic Millions 3YO Guineas Order of Entry and guaranteed him a start in the $2 million race on Saturday, 13th January.

Looking forward to Bel Sonic’s adventure, trainer Jason Warren is confident the emerging sprinter will certainly put on a show. He is currently listed at $15 with

“I thought he was very impressive last week. He reeled off some great sectionals off a slowish tempo. Not many horses can do that unless they’re Group class,” Warren added.

Bel Sonic is a three-year-old bay gelding by six time Victorian Champion Sire Bel Esprit and is out of the Elusive Quality mare, Ausmaid.

He was sold as a weanling by Sun Stud at the 2015 Magic Millions National Weanling Sale and then again as a yearling at the Gold Coast Yearling Sale to Jason Warren for $80,000.

The next instalment of the $3.57 million VOBIS Gold Premier Race series is the $150,000 VOBIS Gold Star which will be held at Moonee Valley on 26th January. It is open to all horses 3YO & up and run over 1500 metres.

It was a brilliant start to 2018 for the Victorian breeding industry with five Victorian bred horses saluting at Flemington on the VRC’s annual New Year’s Day race meeting.

Beginning in fine form, the first to salute was the two-year-old Helmet filly Crossing The Abbey for loyal Victorian breeder Colin Beggs.

Over 1000 metres, the two-year-old filly held on down the straight to win by a nose in the New Year’s Plate. The win gave Pakenham trainer Tim Hughes his first metropolitan victory.

“My whole stomach was churning,” Hughes said.

Crossing The Abbey is out of Colin Beggs’ mare Music In The Park. She is by Bel Esprit and is the daughter and first foal of Beggs wonderful producer, Songs Of Vienna (Umatilla).

Not needing to wait long for the second Victorian bred to take line honours, the John Price-trained Wise Hero (Kaphero) galloped to victory in the Straight Draw Handicap over 1400 metres.

Bred in Victoria by Todd and Sue Lichti, Wise Hero was an astute purchase for John Price, costing just $10,000 at the 2015 Magic Millions Adelaide Yearling Sale. Having now won close to $300,000, it also gave young hoop, Stephanie Thornton her first win at Flemington.

It was more Victorian breeding success in the Red Tempo Handicap over 1700 metres with Cavalero, a chestnut son of Helmet, secured a big upset.  He was bred by Dorrington Farm’s Rob Crabtree who in 2017 bought Wood Nook Farm at Nagambie.

Trained by Shea Eden, Cavalero will now target the Listed Tasmanian Derby over 2200 metres early in February.

He is out of the dual city winner and excellent producer Zipstream (Distant Music), who has had four foals to race, with all being winners including Group 3 winner Miss Promiscuity (Magnus).

The sixth race gave Victorian breeders their fourth win of the day with the Robbie Laing bred and trained Lord Of The Sky taking out the Group 3 Standish Handicap over 1200 metres.

A son of Rangal Park sire Danerich, he now collected in excess of $1.1 milling in prize money and the seven year old entire is now back in the spotlight as a stallion prospect.

Speed machine Lord Of The Sky has now claimed the Group 3 Caulfield double of the Sir John Monash Stakes and the Bletchingly Stakes, the Standish Stakes and was also runner up in the Group 1 Goodwood and Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes.

“He went within an inch of beating Chautauqua in the T J Smith and at his next start, drawing 18, beat all bar Flamberge in the Goodwood,” Laing said.

“It’s a bit of a mystery to me why a stud doesn’t pick him up.”

Lord of The Sky is the first named foal of the tough mare Princess Abassi by the Bletchingly stallion Abassi. The dam was covered by Chatswood Stud’s Reward for Effort in 2017.

Finishing the day on a high note, and recording win number five for Victorian bred horses, was Soho Ruby in the final event of the day.

The Levi Kavanagh trained four-year-old mare, took out the Novelle Star Handicap over 1400 metres, with smiling assassin, Steve Baster in the saddle.

Soho Ruby was bred by Sally Watkins at Lurg’s Willaroon Thoroughbreds and was a $190,000 purchase by Levi’s father, Mark Kavanagh from the 2015 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale.

Soho Ruby is by Northern Meteor, out of Willaroon’s mare Red Rapture. Watkins bought the mare Red Rapture mare in foal with Soho Ruby from Vinery, in the year Northern Meteor died.

The mare has now got a lovely Zoustar yearling on the ground, that is a three-quarter-sister to Soho Ruby. The filly will be sold through the Willaroon Thoroughbreds draft at March’s Inglis Premier Yearling Sale.

It was all blue skies and sunshine for the exciting Tony McEvoy trained filly Sunlight when she easily broke free at the 100 metres to claim Zoustar’s first success as a sire before Christmas.

The impressive victory bodes well for breeders who visited the Woodside Park Stud sire in 2015 and now have his progeny going to yearling sales in 2018.

Run over 900 metres, the victory in the Gold Coast race guaranteed the talented filly a start in the lucrative Magic Millions 2YO Classic on January 13th.

Piloted by Luke Currie, Sunlight was allowed to show her class in the home straight, racing away to win by an impressive five lengths.

Trainer Tony McEvoy was thrilled post-race with his filly, as he looks towards the rewarding January carnival.

“She is a very exciting, special filly that ticked some big KPIs there today. Her times were brilliant; She broke a fifteen-year-old record, home in an outstanding 32.20 seconds. She won by a space, without getting extended.”

“That’s what she didn’t do at Flemington (when placed in the Listed Maribyrnong Trial Stakes), as down the straight she just didn’t utilise her oxygen well, whereas today, she was able to get into a beautiful rhythm, it was lovely to watch,” McEvoy said.

Zoustar will no doubt create quite the buzz on the Coast this year; not only through Sunlight, but also by being exceptionally well represented with 23 yearlings in the upcoming Magic Millions Yearling Sale.

Woodside Park Stud’s Sam Fairgray is looking forward to next week’s Magic Millions yearling sale and expects to be flat out during inspections with the terrific Zoustar yearlings Woodside Park will have on offer.

“The large number of Zoustars accepted into the Magic Millions prove how as a sire he can consistently leave an exceptional type of yearling,” Fairgray said.

“Once again this year he was very well supported by breeders, and being his fourth year at stud, the breeders are now starting to see the rewards. Sunlight will be the first of many victories on the track to come.

“We have five Zoustars in our draft, four colts and a filly, and I believe they will all be right up there; selling in the top 25% overall.”

“Our standout yearling is Lot 833, out of Invested Capital. He is a lovey colt that oozes quality. Beautifully balanced, with a great head, he will be super popular at the sales with the buying bench.”

Notably, Woodside’s Lot 833 Zoustar colt will sell on the Saturday night immediately following Sunlight’s big race. A win in the $2 million feature by the filly would certainly be a boost for Woodside’s yearling.

Zoustar’s shuttle arrangements between both Woodside Park Stud and Widden, allow the popular stallion greater access to both NSW breeders, and Victorian breeders, reaching a strong profile of well-performed mares.

“It is crucial that Victorian breeders have access to Zoustar, as they are a important part of helping him maintain the top class books of mares that he covers,” Fairgray said.

And the weather forecast for the next week’s Magic Millions carnival?

Hot, clear, blue skies, with plenty of Sunlight.

Russell and Caroline Osborne’s Riverbank Farm had something of a post Christmas surprise when the Joe Pride trained Pecans became the first stakes winner for her sire Skilled.

Pecans, a four year old mare, won the $150,000 Group 3 Gosford RSL Club Belle Of The Turf Stakes over 1600 metres.

“We were thrilled to see Pecans win, and Skilled has been a beautiful addition to the farm this season. He is a beautiful horse to handle and, having generated good interest from breeders, he has covered some quality mares,” Caroline said.

“He has been actually going quite well of late, and has had a few winners, but by getting a stakes winner, it really puts him back on the radar and makes the breeders take notice.”

“We are very excited about what the future might hold for Pecans, I think she looks very promising,” Caroline added.

Pecans was a clever purchase for trainer Joe Pride and Tricolours Syndications at the Inglis August Thoroughbred Sale for $50,000 as an ex-Godolphin galloper.

At the time of her sale Pecans had just a solitary win, a maiden at her first start, but being a runner-up in the three starts before her sale, she caught Pride’s eye as a capable “work-in-progress”.

Just over a fortnight after her sale, Pecans finished second at Canterbury, before going on to secure successive wins at Gosford and Warwick Farm.

Leading into the Belle Of The Turf Stakes, the daughter of Skilled was hard fit after a running second only five days earlier. Pecans took the lead at the 250 metres and held off the barnstorming finish of the Three Bridges bred Sedanzer by a half-neck.

“She’s going really well, and we are very happy with her. That’s five runs for the prep, with three wins and two seconds. She’ll have a little break now, she’s earned that,” Pride said.

Riverbank Farm sire Skilled

Skilled was a winner of the Group 1 AJC Champagne Stakes and is a son of the mighty stallion Commands. He is out of the Quest for Fame mare Dextrous who has also produced Group 2 winners Ambidexter and Sidestep. Both also stand at stud now.

Pecans herself is a half-sister to the Listed MRC Merson Cooper Stakes winner Secession (Lonhro) and the stakes-placed Purdy (Lonhro).

Skilled stood at Riverbank Farm in 2017 for a fee of $3,300.