Of course, it is what always happens. You put blood, sweat and tears (and dollars of course) into a stallion…and then tragically you lose him…and then his progeny star on the track.

And so it has been for the Liston family at Three Bridges with their young sire Unencumbered who succumbed to injury in March earlier this year.

In the past seven days, no less than six sons and daughters of Unencumbered have saluted at race tracks across Australia.

Last Wednesday at Perth, Double Bubble got his second career win while the day after at Pinjarra, it was victory time for Fairy Fast.

On Friday, Darby Racing’s I Stole Your love saluted. Tony McEvoy’s promising filly Last Vein came home strongly and was beaten narrowly at Geelong for third. And, in Singapore, the colt Revolution was a runner-up on debut.

Saturday saw I Dream Of Green score on the Gold Coast while at Moe the two fillies Itchy Ears and Soaring Eagle quinellaed race four.

Unencumbered fillies Itchy Ears (left) and Soaring Eagle quinella at Moe (Natasha Morello-Racing Photos)

Finally, on Tuesday, Brave Jewel, who had already been placed on five occasions got her maiden victory at Mackay.

With that extraordinary run of results, Unencumbered now sits in the top three Second Season Sires behind only Zoustar and Epaulette and in front of last season’s star sire Spirit of Boom.

In a sort of ‘but wait, there’s more’ situation, Ballarat trainer Archie Alexander indicated on Saturday at Flemington that his Unencumbered filly has been some lofty goals this spring.

With a preparation starting on Wednesday at Sandown, Alexander hopes the Flemington placed filly can eventually take a place in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas.

Peter Liston has been in the breeding game long enough to know things can’t always work out as you had hoped.

“Once a stallion passes it is uncanny how the progeny can start winning,” Liston said.

With an average of more than 100 live foals in each of his final three crops, there is still much on the horizon for the late son of Testa Rossa says Liston.

“There are still some very lovely yearlings and foals in his coming crops. Three Bridges has a half-brother to Brisbane Cup winner Sedanzer as well as a colt out of Group 1 winner Recurring…both of which we will take to Magic Millions next January.”

There are few greater pleasures for a breeder than winning a race with a horse that was born and raised on home pastures, regardless of the grade or location; quite simply, it’s something we aspire to.

Season 2017/18 was an exceptional one for Gnawarre’s Rosemont Stud. While graduates of Rosemont Stud yearling sale consignments such as Santa Ana Lane, Hey Doc, Montoya’s Secret, Prairie Fire and Fuhryk won at stakes level, it was the victories of horses bred and raced by the stud that provided some of the most memorable moments of the year.

These stars were headed by the likes of Iconoclasm, Runaway and Remember The Name who all scored wins at headquarters.

However, a notable highlight came in the form of Thrillster, a filly bred by client and good friend, Richard Boyd, whose mares reside at Rosemont Stud.

In the past racing season, she won more VOBIS dollars than any other horse…$332,000 in fact!

Raced by a large group including Boyd and Rosemont, the exciting 2YO filly established herself as a classy sprinting juvenile after recording two wins and a black-type second from three starts in her debut campaign of just three starts.

In what proved a shrewd decision by co-trainers Leon and Troy Corstens, Thrillster was targeted at two legs of the VOBIS Gold Premier Race Series; the $280,000 VOBIS Gold Rush at Bendigo and the $310,000 VOBIS Sires two-year-old contest at Caulfield on Victorian Owners & Breeders Race Day.

The now three-year-old filly was successful on both occasions, and Rosemont Stud’s Anthony Mithen believes she has since become a great advertisement for Victoria’s breeding industry and the VOBIS scheme.

Another big VOBIS winner for Rosemont was Starcraft 2YO filly Wild Flyer (Starcraft) in the $180,000 VOBIS Gold Ingot at Caulfield in July.

“VOBIS is unbelievable! It’s like doubling your money, especially with two and three-year-olds,” Mithen said.

“I don’t really think about whether or not to nominate anymore, if you’ve got one that’s eligible, you just have to tick the box!

“Interestingly, even if a VOBIS nominated yearling is purchased by a Sydney stable and predominantly raced in Sydney, these days they make a conscious decision to venture south and race for VOBIS returns. Those smart trainers such as Gai Waterhouse are onto it to make sure their owners get the best pay day, and why wouldn’t you?” Mithen remarked.

The inaugural $1 million VOBIS Sires Showdown is set to be staged at Caulfield in April 2019, and has breeders, owners, syndicators and trainers alike vying for victory in its inaugural year.

Mithen is hopeful another two-year-old raised on the Rosemont pastures will be on track to fly the flag for the team.

“VOBIS is a real testament to what the Victorian breeding industry has to offer, and the $1 million Showdown is a fantastic way to showcase that,” he said.

Once signed up to VOBIS Gold, two-year-olds sired by a stallion nominated to VOBIS Sires (including all of Rosemont’s stallions) gain a free entry to the $1 million Showdown. VOBIS Gold nominations close on 31 August.

Avenel Equine Hospital, a major and valued sponsor of TBV, are excited to announce a new development within their surgical and stud medicine services.

From the start of the 2018 Stud Season, Dr David Railton will be joining the Avenel hospital as a full time Surgeon and Senior Reproduction Veterinarian.

David, who is also a Director of Scone Equine Group, has been a surgeon at Scone Equine Hospital since moving to the area in 2003. Over the last 3 years, David has travelled to Avenel on a regular basis to perform elective surgeries, but due to an increase in demand, David will be now based full time at the clinic.

David brings almost 25 years of veterinary experience to the Avenel practice in both surgery and reproduction, including previous stints at Goulburn Valley Equine Hospital, and also overseas, including Edinburgh and Jamaica.

Over the past three years David has developed significant relationships with the breeders in the Victorian industry and with his broad experience in surgery and reproduction, he is uniquely placed to be able to provide these services to our clients as this region continues its rapid development.

David and his team, which includes Senior Veterinarian, Dr Katie Wilcox are looking forward to the challenges of the breeding season ahead.

“The Victorian breeding industry has enormous momentum at the moment and I am looking forward to being part of this growth and development as Avenel Equine Hospital expands its services” Dr Railton said.

“Being a part of Scone Equine Group and having the support and knowledge of so many experienced and specialist veterinarians puts the Avenel Equine Hospital in a fantastic position to service the industry in the next phase of its development.

David will retain contacts with his clients in Scone and will continue to provide some elective reproductive surgery services for Hunter Valley clients.

As the Victorian breeding industry and Avenel Equine Hospital continue to grow, Scone Equine Group is looking forward to the development of this practice into a full-service equine hospital.

Raising orphan foals is a tough job with the constant two-hour feeds, lack of sleep, and 24/7-hour care, coupled with the patience required help foster and bond a foal with a new mare.

However for the ultimate professional Suzanne Royal, it is indeed a labour of love and one that she wouldn’t swap for anything.

Asscher Park’s Suzanne Royal

“My life is the foals, I love my babies and raised 37 orphans last season,” Royal said.

Now based at Asscher Park in Violet Town, Royal gained a wealth of experience managing Scone Veterinary Hospital’s intensive care unit for around ten years.

Using that knowledge, highly qualified vet nurse Royal bought her band of experienced foster mares to Victoria, and along with recommendations from studs and top clients, Asscher Park was established.

And now a foal Royal raised by hand is on the track and showing everyone that orphan foals can succeed.

A son of Riverbank Farm’s Skilled, Come on Carl was an exciting last start winner at Geelong.

“Carl’s job is to prove a point that if they are raised right they are just as competitive on the track, just look at Redzel!” Royal said.

From the day Carl was foaled, Royal fell in love with the gangly, leggy colt.

“I have been around horses for a long time, but this little guy got me. I thought he was perfect, tall and lanky, looked like he would stay all day and just so laid back,” Royal said.

“We would call out ‘come on Carl’ at feed time and he would look up, give a whinny and come galloping down the paddock for his milk. Every time he would see you, over he would come, with his little ears pricked.

“All of the orphan foals are paddock raised at Asscher Park -rather than boxed – to create a natural herd environment, the same way foals are raised by their mothers.

“They are nurtured with the retired foster mares, who let them have a comfort suck, and teach them to be horses. The only external help they receive is their milk every two hours, day and night. They don’t learn bad habits as the old mares pull them into line, and they can exercise, pick grass, and nibble on pellets and hay.

“The real heroes of my operation are my mares. I couldn’t do the job I do if I didn’t have my brilliant foster mares and fabulous nannies to help me out.”

Additionally, for those breeders that can’t afford to send the foal to Asscher Park or if they are located too far away, Royal also offers 24-hour advice over the phone.

“They may need help start off fostering correctly, or explain foal heat scours, and by working closely with Caroline Duddy, and Goulburn Valley Equine Hospital we can provide a vital and essential service to the breeding industry.”

One of my Royal’s key staff during the season, Scott Bredden from Mainline Breaking and Horse Education, was responsible for breaking Carl in.

“He did a fabulous job, but being a big boy, he needed some time. Luckily we VOBIS nominated him, in case we had to sell him, however when my grandfather passed, he left some money so my family could keep Carl and race him in his memory. Some great friends in Violet Town are on board, and even the town publican is an owner!”

“My two young nieces, who were 8 and 12 helped bucket feed Carl during the school holidays and he comes home and spells here at Asscher Park between preparations.”

Trained on the beach by Mornington training partners Lyn Tolson and Leonie Proctor, Come On Carl has now headed out for a spell after he finished off his prep in style.

“Our goal for his next prep is to get him up to 2000 metres, and once he gets his mind on the job to compete, rather than follow the tail in front of him, we would love to get a start in the Benalla Cup. That would be the best as it would benefit Skilled being a local stallion, and promote Riverbank Farm too,” Royal said.

“And our motto when every horse leaves Asscher Park as they load on the float, is to give them a pat and to tell them ‘go and be great’”

While new thoroughbred operations arrive on the breeding and racing landscape each season, ready to write their chapter in history, Cityview Farm already has a rich and prosperous past.

Recently established and ideally located at Gisborne South, the 200 acres of undulating and lush pastures were once home to two famous racing operations; Trevor and Monica Gluck’s Tremon Stud and VRC Committeeman Doug Reid’s St Johns Lane.

Established over 30 years ago, Tremon Stud had produced generations of successful gallopers on the track, while St John’s Lane, was Reid’s passion, having bred and raced the champion mare Maybe Mahal. Remembered as a visionary, Reid’s legacy lives on through VOBIS, a scheme he helped establish back in the 1980s. Reid is a Life Member of Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria.

The highly respected racing industry journalist, breeder and owner, Kristen Manning, recalls a part of that precious thoroughbred history fondly.

“My first foal was bred at Tremon Stud called Phar Star out of St John Lady, and only just down the road, my first racehorse was bred at St John’s Lane called Much Ado. I combined the two properties beautifully,” Manning said.

Victorian breeder Kristen Manning

Catching the racing bug in her teens, thanks to the success of her dad’s first racehorse, Manning has been part of the Victorian thoroughbred fabric ever since.

“Our first racehorse Expected Journey won nine races, so how could I not be hooked. I rang around and found out his dam was at St John’s Lane, so Doug Reid let us come over and visit Good Chance. She had a colt foal, Much Ado at foot and I remember seeing him and thinking he would make a lovely little show horse, which later in life he did.”

However, Much Ado had a very successful career on the track first, with 62 starts, victorious in seven, and a runner-up to St Shannon in the 1996 VRC St Leger.

While Manning’s first broodmare was St John’s Lady, bred at St John’s Lane, who her family leased to race with the late George Ledger.

“She was exceptionally fast, and George said we would have a lot of fun with her, but after travelling all the way up to Wangaratta one day to watch her trial, she was galloped on so badly, her leg was torn to shreds. “

“It was horrible, and the owner didn’t want to pay for the vet, so George Ledger said, “the people who lease her will save her, give her to them”. She became my first broodmare.”

“My 151-1 winner Cooter Cha Cha, who received a Bendigo Middle Distance Horse of the Year nomination, is incredibly her grandson, so St John’s Lady is still repaying us today.”

As Kristen points out, undoubtedly, the advantage Cityview Farm has over other broodmare farms is their ideal proximity to Melbourne.

“I remember on my days off I would go up to Tremon and sit in the paddocks with the mares and foals. I developed my love and appreciation of horses by just spending countless hours watching their behaviour and antics. It was so peaceful and serene.”

“Foals are wonderful time-wasters, and it was hard to believe that I was only 20 minutes from my home. Whenever I had a few hours to spare, I could come up in the morning and see my foal, and be back in the city before lunch.”

“Interestingly, many of my first memories of horses are from this pocket of the world. It was the premier thoroughbred breeding region before Nagambie took off, with arguably the most famous Victorian stud, Stockwell, home of the mighty Showdown close by and Cornwell Park, known for a time as the Independent Stallion Station just down the road. I remember studying the Goulburn Valley Equine Course in their paddocks.”

“Tremon Stud was beautifully appointed by Trevor Gluck, and it is wonderful to see that Cityview Farm has improved and restored the property to its former glory.”

As well as the long-shot Cooter Cha Cha, some of Manning’s recent industry successes include the successful mating plan of progressive juvenile, Jonker, her recent winner Supergrass as owner, the exciting Geodesic who has won three in a row and current pin-up girl, the Group 3 winner Quilate.

A property steeped in tradition, the fertile volcanic soil of the area have raised and grazed many champions, and the team at Cityview farm are dedicated to ensuring that tradition continues for many generations to come.

For more information, contact Carla at Cityview Farm on 0475 999011 or visit www.cityviewfarm.com.au

It’s not hard to work out why Lauriston Thoroughbreds’ James O’Brien is pretty excited about the prospects of unbeaten three-year-old colt Just Rolling.

The Tony McEvoy trained youngster made it two from two at Morphettville on Saturday and appears to have a bright future.

Sure, Victorian-based Lauriston didn’t retain a share in Just Rolling when selling the Sebring youngster for $330,000 at the 2017 Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale, but the significance of the rising galloper’s progress far outweighs monetary considerations.

After all, there’s a great deal of pride involved in this too: Just Rolling’s dam, the Encosta de Lago mare Just Our Girl, is the first live foal of the brilliant race filly/mare, Gold Edition, which the O’Brien family raced with distinction in the mid noughties.

The Champion mare’s 17 wins included a Manikato and Ascot Vale – both at Group 1 level – five Group 2 wins, three Group 3 wins, four Listed wins and a whole host of Group 1 placings.

Sadly though, Gold Edition has had a checkered career in the breeding barn, producing just the three named foals (including an unraced 2YO) in a ten-year breeding career.

“The great thing is that Just Our Girl was – is – a smashing type and is turning out magnificent horses herself,” O’Brien points out.

“Lauriston sold Just Our Girl to (Cranbourne trainer) Greg Eurell for $520,000 at the 2012 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale and she was raced by David and Carol Kirby who also raced Pinker Pinker (2011 Cox Plate winner).

“Just Our Girl didn’t do too much on the track and her owners really weren’t that interested in the breeding side of things, so we were able to buy her back.

“Her first three covers have produced colts, by Sebring, Snitzel and Not A Single Doubt and they are all cracking athletes.

“The Snitzel colt was sold to Sun Bloodstock for $300,000 at this year’s (Inglis) Melbourne Premier (Yearling Sale), while her Not A Single Doubt colt will go to Melbourne for the 2019 Premier Sale. Just Our Girl is heading to Merchant Navy this spring so we’ll be obviously keen to see what she turns out with him.”

O’Brien has closely watched Just Rolling’s two runs to date and came away suitably impressed – particularly with the win at Morphettville.

“He was caught wide on debut at Gawler, but that run on Saturday was something else: it was only a small field but 100 metres from home it appeared as if he would run a long last, but then he just finished it off so well,” O’Brien enthused.

“We (Lauriston) had a very good spring last year with horses we bred winning big races in successive weeks, courtesy of Legend of Condor (Victory Vein Stakes), Global Glamour (Group Two Tristarc) and Epitmum (Telstra Stakes) and hopefully a colt like Just Rolling will kick this spring off in similar fashion.”

According to Just Rolling’s trainer, a reappearance over 1500 metres at Morphettville in a fortnight is on the cards before a tilt at the Listed Morphettville Guineas over 1600 metres on 8 September.

“If he comes through both of those races we’ll then head to Melbourne where there are a number of options including the (Group 2) Bill Stutt Stakes (won by McEvoy’s Hey Doc in 2016) and (Group 1) Caulfield Guineas (13 October),” McEvoy revealed.

“I’ve had a huge opinion of Just Rolling from day one … he was the number one seed in Melbourne – the best colt in the sale by a long way. I didn’t even have an ‘order’ for him and bought him purely on spec.

“He’s a very good colt. I’ve got another Sebring (Vinland) who showed plenty of promise, but this horse has impressed me from the start and while I thought he would get up and going as an early 2YO, we’ve just had to be a bit patient and now he’s really beginning to show us what he’s capable of.”

Courtesy of Aushorse

Kym Hann trained Glenrowan Prince, the tough orphan foal, took out his second consecutive Bendigo Racehorse of the Year Award on Saturday night.

The now 7YO son of Bushranger was bred by Max and Judi Clarke at Strath Creek and sold by them at the 2013 Inglis Premier Sale through the Eliza Park draft for $35,000.

Breeder Max Clarke has previously said the foal was highly resilient owing to his orphan upbringing as when he was only two and a half months old his dam, Blue Magic, died due to a snakebite.

“We looked at hand rearing him or being fostered, but the little guy was on hard feed the next day and since then, he has never looked back,” said Clarke.

He had 11 starts during the 2017-18 racing season for two wins and a pair of minor placings. His wins came in the $100,000 VOBIS Gold Eldorado at Wangaratta (1300m) and the $80,000 Echuca Cup (1400m). His career earnings now sit a tick over $354,000.

Amazingly, Glenrowan Prince was nominated for an award for a record fifth-straight year and also won the 2017-2018 sprinter’s award for Bendigo trained horses.

There was a strong Victorian breeding flavour amongst other Bendigo Racehorse Awards winners.

The Todd and Sue Lichti bred filly Miss Leonidas won the Three-Year old title. And it seems much greater things await the super talented daughter of I Am Invincible. Trainer Shaun Dwyer indicated a VRC Lightning Stakes in February was not out of question following her impressive win at Moonee Valley in June.

Others receiving awards included:

  • Middle Distance winner: The Danny Curran trained Manhattan Menage, a son of Blue Gum Farm sire Manhattan Rain
  • Stayer winner: The Anne Yates trained Weave, a son of former Darley Northwood shuttle sire Hard Spun

A pair of star winners over the weekend have brought success to a triumvirate of breeders in Gilgai Farm, Stonehouse Thoroughbreds and Sheikh Fahad Al-Thani’s Qatar Bloodstock.

Highly talented Rosehill 4YO winner Paret and Sunday’s Cranbourne 3YO winner Farstar were both bred by Qatar Bloodstock and both have the brand of Nagambie’s famed Gilgai Farm having been raised there.

Meanwhile Ryan Arnel and his Eddington based Stonehouse operation have been at the centre of the two winners’ early lives as the manager of Sheikh Fahad’s breeding bloodstock in Victoria.

The Chris Waller trained Paret (Harbour Watch) was favourite going into Saturday’s event over 1350 metres and saluted accordingly. The win had Waller indicating that a shot at the Group 1 the Epsom Handicap in late September was now on the cards.

Gilgai Farm raised Paret as a Magic Millions 2016 yearling

Waller compared Paret to his 2013 Epsom winner Boban. And like Boban tended to do, Paret came from near last on Saturday, rounded up the field and went to the line eased down.

“We have been concentrating on getting him to settle and he did that today,” Waller said post-race.

“We’ll look at the Bill Ritchie for him now, which is the same race Boban won before the Epsom…they are similar types of horses.”

Trained by Matt Ellerton and Simon Zahra, Farstar (Zoustar) led all the way in his Cranbourne win, his second career start after a fifth at Sandown on debut.

Farstar was purchased by the training partnership for $110,000 at the 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast January Sale. He is a half-brother to Ellerton/Zahra trained Group 3 winner Sharnee Rose and stakes-placed Zaffaan and is the fifth winner from Farasha, a half-sister to the dams of Group 1 winners Rewaaya and Ertijaal.

Stonehouse Thoroughbreds’ Ryan Arnel, who manages Qatar Bloodstock’s breeding operation in Victoria, said the wins by the talented duo were a great result for Sheikh Fahad and bloodstock manager David Redvers.

“Sheikh Fahad loves the racing in Melbourne and the Spring Carnival is a huge draw card for them. One year they had a runner in almost every major race…the Qatar Bloodstock colours are expected to feature again this Spring,” Arnel said.

“It’s all part of Qatar plan, to breed and support their stallions, and then put the progeny out in the market to show the industry what they are producing.

“From a personal perspective Sheikh Fahad and David Redvers have been great supporters of Stonehouse as it has developed over the past four years. David Redvers in particular has been a tremendous mentor who I often go to for advice.”

Dreams came true for a small-time Victorian breeder when his homebred horse – who barely made it past two weeks old – won his maiden at Cranbourne.

The victory of the Darren Weir trained and well-named three-year-old The Gatting Ball made a day to remember for breeder-owner Adam Testro.

Adam Testro’s homebred The Gatting Ball wins at Cranbourne (Leonie Grbic-Racing Photos)

Having tasted success many times previously as an owner, The Gatting Ball’s was the first horse that Testro, a world-leading gastroentologist, had bred to win.

The Gatting Ball as mentioned has been cleverly named. A son of former Darley shuttler Hard Spun, he is out of the mare Art Of Deception (for those that don’t follow cricket, this is a reference to a memorable wicket delivery by Shane Warne to English batsman Mike Gatting).

Adam Testro’s mare Art of Deception with The Gatting Ball as a foal

Following the win, Testro explained how The Gatting Ball almost didn’t make it as a youngster having developed osteomyelitis – a blood-born bacterial infection – of the shoulder when only a couple of weeks old.

“The little guy almost died as a foal, but he is a fighter, and today he showed the same courage to break his maiden. As a breeder, that was the icing on the cake,” Testro said.

Foaled down at Gary and Helen’s Miranda Park at Hesket in the Macedon Ranges, it was Helen’s attention to detail and horsemanship that quickly identified all was not right with the colt.

“He was showing lameness, had a fever and was lethargic, so Helen quickly called the vet. Being only two weeks old, their immune system can crash quite quickly, so they were referred and sent up to Goulburn Valley Equine Hospital to be in the best of care with Dr Jim Vasey,” Testro recalled.

“Jim tried many different things, x-rays, scopes to check for joint infections and medication, without success, and even performed the complicated operation to remove the dead bone and place antibiotic beads directly into the dead tissue to stimulate the bone to regenerate.

“He said he would let us know in 24 hours if we were winning or losing, and at that point, he gave us the option to push on or let him go. We probably spent the same amount on vet fees as his service fee for Hard Spun, but we are owner-breeders that love our horses, and we weren’t prepared to stop until we were told it was futile.”

“We said to Jim, we will keep paying and trying, but we respect your call if you think he has had enough, but luckily he was a real fighter and finally he turned the corner and came good.”

“He is still now slightly smaller than the average horse, with the infection possibly taking its toll, but he has an enormous heart, and he tries his guts out,” Testro said.

“Even Gary O’Meara always said he had a real fighting spirit, and that he was always the leader of the pack up the hills and the first to the feed.”

Victorian breeder Adam Testro with world champion Frankel at Juddmonte

Testro purchased the Artie Schiller mare Art Of Deception as a weanling from Burnewang North Pastoral. Raced lightly, she showed talent, but knee problems caused her to feel her legs when under pressure.

Unfortunately, Testro lost the mare after a paddock accident last year. Apart from The Gatting Ball, she also produced a Turffontein filly that is now a two-year-old and in training with Mornington’s Logan McGill.

“We still have a couple of mares that we currently breed, and once they retire they happily find their way to my brother’s farm, Millbrook near Ballarat to be pampered pets or become riding horses,” Testro said.

Meanwhile, Testro indicated that The Gatting Ball may soon be off for a spell having been up racing since April

“He’s no world beater, but luckily he is sound as a bell, so we are hoping he will be a great country horse, that we can have a bit of fun with. The country tracks are a great day out for the kids,” Testro said.

2018 Victorian Stallion Parades Schedule

Sunday 12 August
Woodside Park Stud10:00am for 11:00amTyldenOpenadmin@woodsideparkstud.com.au
Mt Brown International3:00pmEuroaOpenlesterogrady@outlook.com
Friday 17 August
Sun Stud12:00pmKerrieOpeninfo@sunstud.com.au
Spendthrift Farm3:00pmKerrieOpenoffice@spendthrift.com.au
Saturday 18 August
Spendthrift Farm12:00pmKerrieOpenoffice@spendthrift.com.au
Sunday 19 August
Swettenham Stud10:30amSeymourOpenoffice@swettenham.com.au
Darley Northwood12:30pmSeymourInvite Onlyn/a
Chatswood Stud2:30pmSeymourOpeninfo@chatswoodstud.com.au


By Appointment Only

Blue Gum FarmEuroa03 5795 3331bginfo@bluegumfarm.com.au
Bombora DownsBittern03 5983 6802horses@bomboradowns.com
Bullarook Park StudAvenel03 5796 2166bullarookpark@bigpond.com.au
Glen Eden StudMoranding03 5781 1411glenedenagistment@bigpond.com.au
Greta West StudGreta West03 5727 6243gretawest@bigpond.com
Larneuk StudEuroa03 5790 3204neville@larneuk.com
Lauriston Park StudEuroa0427 903 353 lauristonpark@bigpond.com.au
Ponderosa ParkNathalia0427 761 016pk.three@bigpond.com
Rangal Park StudCampbellfield 03 5795 2148rangal@aapt.net.au
Ridgeview ParkMuskerry03 5433 6306ridgeview.park@bigpond.com
Riverbank FarmBenalla0423 768 155rosborne3@bigpond.com
Rosemont StudGnarwarre03 5220 6500office@rosemontstud.com.au
Wyndholm ParkMiners Rest0418 508 212kesf@bigpond.com


For information about all stallions and stallion farms in Victoria, visit the IRT Victorian Stallions Roster.

In October 2015, tragedy struck at then Smeaton based Moorookyle Park when Robyn Shakespeare’s much-loved stakes winning sire Hurdy Gurdy Man succumbed to an immediate colic attack.

The homebred Street Cry stallion had only just entered the breeding barn after a successful race track career collecting nearly half a million in prizemoney including a Hobart Cup victory.

He would serve just the three mares in his short breeding career, but Robyn Shakespeare happily reports two live foals were born and both have entered racing stables.

And this racing season, the late sire is a ‘first crop sire’ taking on the likes of Brazen Beau, Dissident and Deep Field…albeit with just the one filly and one colt!

The filly is Robyn’s homebred. Now in the stables of Darren Weir like her sire, she has been named Robyn’s Folly!

With her breeding and racing enthusiast husband Ed passing away in 2014, Robyn accepts that the filly will possibly be the last of the Shakespeare homebreds, but she fondly remembers the early days of their breeding venture.

“It’s funny how we began all those years ago. Ed was an accountant, but he went against his better financial advice and followed his passion for thoroughbred pedigrees and mating plans. I remember him sending a fax to Bryan Muschialli to order two mares, including Hurdy Gurdy’s dam, Abalone and that‘s how it started,” Robyn explained.

“We knew nothing about horses, we even had to ask Bryan what to feed them, but we soon learned and the horses became a wonderful part of our lives.

“We were incredibly lucky, as one thing I do know about horse racing is that there is good luck and there is bad luck…and that’s all there is…and it can change in a flash.

“Ed and I had so much fun picking the names of our horses…Hurdy Gurdy Man, Boogie Woogie Man, Hoochie Coochie Man, so when they found out that I called her Robyn’s Folly, the stable was a bit disappointed, but it’s quite apt really.”

“We owe so much to Darren Weir. We were there when he first moved to Ballarat, and he kept Hurdy Gurdy sound, kept him going and persevered with him. I’m sure he will look after Robyn’s Folly the same.”

Robyn also acknowledged Hurdy Gurdy’s strapper Rachel Vanderlinden who loved and cared for the country champ as if he was her own.

“I just loved him, and he had a great attitude, and being short and chunky, he would always like to make out he was bigger than he was,” Vanderlinden said.

Hurdy Gurdy Man wins the Hobart Cup

Ed’s death in 2014 came just days before Hurdy Gurdy Man was to defend his Hobart Cup title – a victory in 2013 neither Robyn or Ed were present at due to their youngest son getting married that weekend…”but Ed sure did put up a protest” said Robyn.

“In 2014, he was nominated to defend the cup. We were all so excited as Darren was full of high hopes that he would go back to back. Tragically, on February the fifth, only days before the race, Ed had a stroke and passed away.”

“I gave my son all the tickets and passes to attend on our behalf, a trip away for their first wedding anniversary to Tasmania, but as luck would have it, the race meeting was abandoned due to a freak weather event, and Hurdy Gurdy Man was retired, never to race again.”

He was named Victorian Country Horse of the Year for the 2013/2014 racing season courtesy of his wins in the Murtoa and Hamilton Cups, before also running into the money in the Ballarat Cup (third), Werribee Cup (second) and the Bagot Handicap (second) that same campaign.

He was then retired to Nioka Wozny’s Moorookyle Park before dying in October 2015.

“He was just a beautiful, beautiful horse, and was a pleasure to do anything with and he had taken to his new career wonderfully,” Wozny said.

So now it will be left to Shakespeare’s Robyn’s Folly and her paternal brother, a horse nicknamed ‘Nash’ (out of Honours List mare Honourable Miss) to follow in their sire’s hoofprints.

‘Nash’ has been broken and is in training with Hamilton based Brittany Goodwin who bred him along with her partner Bram. The colt is currently enjoying a spell before heading to the track later this season.

The first set of Off The Track shows to be sponsored by Victorian breeders have been locked in with 12 Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria (TBV) members signed up.

In June, TBV, together with Racing Victoria’s Off The Track (OTT) program and Victorian Agricultural Shows Ltd (VAS), announced a new partnership, giving Victorian breeders the opportunity to support local equestrian shows.

This first set of 14 local shows announced stretch right across Victoria – from Swan Hill to Bushy Park (near Sale) and Wodonga through to Warrnambool. This provides lots of opportunities to Off The Track horses in all regions of Victoria.

“Victorian breeders are really excited about these show sponsorships with more breeder sponsored shows for the 2018/2019 show season to be announced over coming weeks and months,” O’Brien said.

“Victorian breeders are tremendously passionate about equine welfare, and this initiative ticks a lot of boxes.

“The new partnership gives breeders a chance to not only champion equine welfare, but there’s a huge added benefit that TBV members can give back to their local community through their support of equestrian shows.”

Under the new sponsorship arrangement, winners of the OTT Thoroughbred class at shows that have been sponsored by a local breeder will now receive, in addition to the OTT prizes on offer, an extra $150 plus a fantastic trophy horse rug, courtesy of TBV members.

In the six weeks since the opening of expressions of interest, already 20 Victorian breeders have taken up sponsorship of 35 individual OTT shows across the state, injecting an additional $5,400 in prizemoney for participants.

Ahead of the beginning of the 2018/19 VAS Show Series, TBV, OTT and VAS are delighted to share an initial list of OTT qualifiers sponsored by TBV breeder members from August through to the end of October 2018.

25 Aug-18Pakenham District A & H Society Inc.Balius Farm
15 Sept-18Bushy ParkAmpulla Lodge
6 Oct-18Seymour A & P Society Inc.Yarran
6 Oct-18Swan Hill & District A & P Society Inc.North Star Park Thoroughbreds
12 Oct-18Wangaratta Agricultural Society Inc.Willaroon Thoroughbreds
13 Oct-18Shepparton Agricultural Society Inc.Swettenham Stud
13 Oct-18Sunbury Agricultural Society Inc.Sheamus Mills Bloodstock
19 Oct-18Benalla A & P Society Inc.Riverbank Farm
20 Oct-18Royal Geelong A & P Society Inc.Rosemont Stud
20 Oct-18Kyabram A H & P Society Inc.Rushton Park
TBCLancefield Agricultural Society Inc.Hesket Bloodstock
27 Oct-18Warrnambool Agricultural Society Inc.Illowra Stud
27 Oct-18Bendigo Agricultural Show Society Inc.Illowra Stud
28 Oct-18Euroa Agricultural Society Inc.Illowra Stud

The VAS Show Series runs from August 2018 until March 2019, with the State Finals to be staged in early January next year.

TBV members and Victorian breeders interested in sponsoring a local show this coming season should contact tbvmedia@racingvictoria.net.au or (03) 9258 4233 for further information.

Saturday’s impressive Moonee Valley winner You’ve Been Had has become a banner boy for connections who are prepared to be patient with their maturing horses.

Bred by Darraweit Guim’s Darryl Laity, the son of Reward For Effort did not race until he was five-years-old but has now racked up five wins in just eight career starts.

While You’ve Been Had brought many smiles to the faces of his trainer and owners at Moonee Valley when winning over 1000 metres, breeder Laity admitted it was not that long ago he was questioning if the horse would ever race.

Laity had sold You’ve Been Had as a weanling through the Supreme Thoroughbreds draft for $21,000 at the 2013 Inglis Great Southern Weanling Sale to Mornington trainer Lisa Enright.

“I was starting to wonder what had happened to him, as he was a great type, and a relaxed, easy going colt, but he obviously needed a bit of time to grow and develop,” Laity said.

“He was lucky to find (trainer) Lisa (Enright), who gave him that time to mature, as if he had gone to one of the big stables, we wouldn’t see him now. In this case, patience has paid off.”

Currently breeding a handful of mares each year, Laity proudly supports the Victorian stallion roster and the VOBIS scheme.

“We have a few on the ground by Unencumbered and Ready For Victory, and our mares are heading to Reset and Brazen Beau this year,” Laity indicated.

“I only had the two foals the year You’ve Been Had was born…his paddock mate who is named Rezak, has turned out to be quite handy too. He raced here with Greg Eurell (for five wins), before heading over to Perth. The two must have taught each other something racing around in the paddock.”

For Mornington trainer Lisa Enright it was an emotional victory as her nephew Ryder Enright, usually a regular at the track had been diagnosed with leukemia during the week.

“It was a great win, and I’m sure Ryder was cheering hard in his hospital bed. Dusty is his favourite horse, so he can pick a type, and now having had five wins from eight starts, he is the stable superstar!”

You’ve Been Had will now enjoy a couple of weeks off and then head back to the Valley for a lucrative VOBIS Gold bonus race.

“If he happens to win that then we will be looking at something better in the spring….” Enright said.

Meanwhile the success for Chatswood Stud sire Reward for Effort flowed into Sunday at Sandown with his son Sheriff John Stone narrowly beating Seven Year Reward. Then on Tuesday at Warracknabeal, the Barbara Saunders homebred mare Belle Prix scored to make it three good winners for the sire in just four days.

It was a case of great teamwork when Victorian breeding operations, Flinders based Two Bays Farm and Eddington’s Three Bridges Thoroughbreds, helped bring Saturday’s Randwick winner to the yearling sales back in 2017.

The Triple Crown owned and Snowden Racing trained son of Epaulette, showed a brilliant turn of foot to produce a barnstorming finish claim the three-year-old race over 1200 metres.

The Snowdens now have the Group 3 Up and Coming Stakes in their sights for Military Zone in mid-September at Randwick over 1300 metres.

The now gelding was bred by Two Bays Farm down at their picturesque property on the Mornington Peninsula.

They then offered him as a weanling at the 2016 Inglis Great Southern Sale, where he was snapped up by renowned bloodstock agent Paul Willetts.

He then underwent a yearling preparation at Three Bridges before Triple Crown Syndications were the lucky buyer of the then colt at the 2017 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale at Oaklands Junction.

Military Zone as a yearling at Three Bridges

Military Zone is the second foal of the Street Sense mare Loading Zone. She is a half-sister to Randwick winner Double Ranga, the dam of Group 2 Sweet Embrace Stakes winner Scarlett Rain (Manhattan Rain). Loading Zone was covered by Blue Gum Farm based Manhattan Rain last spring.

Two Bays Farm manager Rob Carlile always had a high opinion of the horse from day one and was quick to point out, that although it was only a benchmark 70 win, the quality of the field was high.

“A lot of those colts and gelding are all heading to better races in the carnival, possibly a Golden Rose run, so it was a top quality field. His final sectionals were outstanding, breaking 33 seconds,” Carlile said.

“And don’t underestimate Paul Willetts, one of the best judges of racehorses. He is a great supporter of ours, buying another weanling from us this year too.

“He was the last lot in the platinum session and, as the Epaulettes’ were making crazy money, it was a financial decision that we sold him.”

“Three Bridges know us well, and we want to be known as a selling farm, up-front and honest. We all need to work together in this industry and support each other

“I knew Pauline Liston loved the horse and chatting to Tobes (son Toby Liston), I think the quote was along the lines of ‘Don’t come home without him!’

“His dam, Loading Zone is a very unassuming mare, and you wouldn’t think much of her to look at, but she has produced a belter of a Kermedec and is currently in foal to Manhattan Rain.

“As she doesn’t foal till late, it will depend on what Military Zone does in the spring, securing a possible Group or stakes place, whether we upgrade her stallion selection… we will wait and see,” Carlile said.

Breeders, staff and enthusiasts from northern Victoria came together on Saturday night to celebrate another year of thoroughbred champions raised and grazed across the northern region

The Northern Region awards, held at Nagambie’s Mitchelton Winery, also recognised people who care for these horses each step of the way.

Northern Region Thoroughbreds Social Club committee member Rob Bogumil was thrilled with the large turnout for the annual event.

“It provides a special night out for industry participants to don the glad rags and enjoy a social drink before the busy breeding season is underway.”

“It was the biggest turnout we have had for a number of years.”

Along with a spot of networking, dancing and laughter, the awards presented included:

  • NRTSC Industry Award – Ian Horwood. Presented by Dr. Katie Wilcox representing the Avenel Equine Hospital.
  • Tim Jones Memorial Young Achiever Award – Mikela Hudson. Presented by Dr Simon Robinson representing the Victorian Equine Group.
  • Stallion of the Year – Written Tycoon (Woodside Park Stud) Presented by Rob Bogumil, CEO of CEPA Farm Supplies.
  • Breeder of the Year –Godolphin Northwood, Presented by Andrew Soper representing Ridleys Barastoc.
  • Broodmare of the Year – Slippery Madam owned by Twin Creeks Thoroughbreds.
  • First Season Sire – Fighting Sun (Sun Stud)
  • Highest VOBIS Gold Average Award – Burnewang North Pastoral.
  • The Over Achiever Award – (received following a wonderful applause) John Pittard (Master Farrier). Presented by Daniel Nevill, representing the Northern Region Thoroughbreds Committee.

The two-standout awards for the night were the NRTSC Industry award presented to Ian Horwood and the Tim Jones Memorial Young Achiever Award presented to Mikela Hudson.

“Ian Horwood – What a bloody legend! Respected and loved by all in the breeding industry, he has given almost forty years of dedicated service to a field that is so thankful of his time,” Bogumil said.

“Having managed Collingrove back in the day, he was instrumental in setting up the National Centre for Equine Education (at Wangaratta) to help educate and empower stud workers to be more knowledgeable, and he was also a founding member of the Northern Region Thoroughbreds Club.

“We all have Ian and Kerrie in our thoughts, and along with their late daughter Courtney, who was on our committee, we recognise their family as a treasure of our industry.”

Mikela Hudson at just 23 years old, has taken on a leading role at Creightons Creek based Lindsay Park.

She plays a significant part in facilitating the training of some of Australia’s most elite racehorses. As the HUB operations manager at Lindsay Park, she is responsible for the daily trackwork of up to 180 horses, 18 riders and over 20 ground staff.

“This job requires great organisational skills, extraordinary interpersonal and communication skills and Mikela is a well-deserved award winner,” Bogumil said.

Along with Rob Bogumil, current members of the Northern Region Thoroughbreds Social Club include Dr Katie Wilcox from Avenal Equine, Daniel Neville and Christine Mills from Hollylodge Thoroughbreds, Chris and Catherine Kent from Blue Gum Farm, Fiona Grundmann from Lindsay Park Racing, and Damian Gleeson and Deb Gifford from Phoenix Broodmare Farm.

“It’s a club that is about the industry, not individuals, and by gathering a young, smart, vibrant group of active members in the region, we can come up with new ideas that appeal to the breeding and racing workforce in the area.”

The occasion of the Horses’ Birthday on 1 August was used to announce a two-year extension to the partnership between Tabcorp and Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria (TBV).

Representatives of Tabcorp and TBV joined Victorian-bred Group 1 winning hero Hey Doc at Tony McEvoy’s Flemington stables for the exciting announcement.

The agreement will see Tabcorp’s wagering arm, TAB, secure rights as TBV’s exclusive principal partner and official wagering partner. The two-year agreement is an extension to the partnership first established in 2015. TAB will continue to have a prominent presence on TBV communications and at TBV events.

Tabcorp’s Victorian General Manager, Wagering Trevor Parkes and TBV President James O’Brien presented Hey Doc with a special birthday cake and a carrot to mark the special day for thoroughbred horses.

“Tabcorp is a supporter of racing’s participants and our partnership with TBV is a natural fit,” Mr Parkes said.

“Tabcorp’s businesses return more than $1 billion to the three codes of Australian racing each year.

“Our partnership with TBV will continue to help it promote thoroughbred breeding in Victoria and we’re delighted to back this important industry.”

TBV President James O’Brien was thrilled Tabcorp had agreed to an extension of this important industry partnership.

“Tabcorp is a loyal and long-time supporter to Victorian racing delivering enormous dollars to our industry,” Mr O’Brien said.

“Tabcorp’s direct support of Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria most certainly enables us to enhance our marketing and support of the state’s breeding sector.”

With his homebred results this season, Mornington’s David Brideoake can lay claim to the title of Victoria’s best trainer-breeder.

And his banner homebred horse surely is the mercurial stayer/hurdler Self Sense who took out Saturday’s $180,000 VOBIS Gold Stayers race at Caulfield.

This season alone Brideoake’s Self Sense (Street Sense) has won the Lafferty Hurdle, the Australian Hurdle and the $280,000 VOBIS Gold Heath.

Victorious in 13 of his 52 career starts, Self Sense has accumulated career earnings $1,140,070 in prize money. With more than $300,000 of that coming via VOBIS, the seven-year-old has become a kind of banner boy for the Victorian incentive program.

In fact, Self Sense raced in the inaugural VOBIS Gold Premier Race, the VOBIS Gold Carat at Caulfield all the way back in January 2013…and was runner-up!

“The whole scheme has backed him all the way and a big percentage of his stake money has been from the VOBIS and VOBIS Gold scheme,” Brideoake said.

“He is by Street Sense, a great staying stallion, a champion son of Street Cry, and as his mother could stay, he was always destined to get over a distance.

“Although he raced as a two-year-old over 1000 metres, running second, he is the unique combination of a big strong horse that could stay with a bit of speed.”

Trainer-breeder David Brideoake after Self Sense won VOBIS Gold Stayers (Ross Holburt-Racing Photos)

David Brideoake has achieved many successes as a breeder not least his Group 1 Galaxy Stakes win with the tough mare Griante.

“I really enjoy my breeding, and nothing gives me more joy than training a winner from one of my trusted mares,” Brideoake said.

“I have around a dozen mares that I breed from every year on my property at Violet Town that is managed by my son Tom and we have had some lovely success with two-year-olds from the mares this season that have come off that farm.”

“I trained Self Sense’s mum, the Personal Flag sired, Be My Person, who won a Saturday race in town at the Valley and has she was a terrific broodmare, with six winners from seven to race.”

Self Sense’s half-sister Shylight was a Group 3 winner in Adelaide, while his half-brothers Ambitious Glory (Hong Kong) and Bulldozer (Singapore) have won overseas.

“Unfortunately, Be My Person died at the end of 2015, and the last foal she left was a Reset colt that’s now a two-year-old called Publican’s Choice. I have retained three daughters out of the mare to continue to breed with.”

“We tend to keep all the fillies and race them with friends and long-time clients. By having trained the mothers you really pick up on personalities and certain traits in the family that help orchestrate their progeny’s training programs for the track and their mating plans in the barn.”

This season Brideoake has trained a host of homebred winners apart from Self Sense. They have included Grand Wish, Hardern, Rossman, Street Spun, Extreme Bliss and Legal Mistress.

Added to that, at Magic Millions on the Gold Coast, he sold a lovely Brazen Beau yearling filly out of his mare Grand Strategy to Chris Waller/Guy Mulcaster for $250,000. She was a half sister to Griante.

How’s this for a breeder? One you bred winning at Rosehill just fifteen minutes after one of your homebred fillies takes out a $180,000 race at Caulfield.

Oh, and you get the rest of the afternoon to celebrate a huge win to your beloved Tigers at the MCG!

That was Rosemont Stud principal Anthony Mithen’s Saturday.

The homebred filly was the Henry Dwyer trained Wild Flyer who took out the $180,000 VOBIS Gold Ingot for two-year-olds at Caulfield. Even more pleasingly for Mithen and Rosemont, she is a daughter of their resident sire Starcraft.

“That win was so satisfying, as it’s been a long-term investment emotionally and financially,” Mithen said.

“She seems to be one of those fillies that wants to win, wants to compete, and is thriving in the training environment.”

Meanwhile at Rosehill, it was the Chris Waller trained Huangshan, a product of Rosemont, who saluted. The maturing 3YO has won his past two starts indicating he is one the rise with much more to come.

Oh, not to be forgotten, Saturday’s Doomben winner Looks Like Elvis and the same day’s Morphettville winner Barbie’s Boy are both also products of Rosemont Stud. Some quaddie that makes it!

Mithen was particularly thrilled with Wild Flyer’s particularly as a result of the investment Rosemont had put into her breeding.

“We bought the dam Wild Mia in the USA, raced her there and then brought her back to Australia to breed. After slipping her first two foals, it was a worry, but we stuck with it and invested in our own stallion and sent her to Starcraft.

“We managed the pregnancy all the way through and here we are with a lovely filly that has won over $100,000 in one fell swoop!

“Wild Mia was Group 2 placed and won a stakes race for us. She even ran on Kentucky Derby Day, which was a great thrill as (Rosemont’s) Nigel (Austin) and his wife went over to cheer her on. So she has already given us a few highlights and now through her progeny there may be more to come.”

Trainer Henry Dwyer was ecstatic with the VOBIS Gold win. He has become quite the master at targeting these lucrative races having won the VOBIS Gold Rush at Bendigo with If Not Now When and the VOBIS Gold Strike at Warrnambool with Je Suis Tycoon.

“It’s brilliant prize money and a terrific scheme. She’s a homebred filly for Rosemont, who bought the mare in America, so it’s a terrific result for all concerned,” Dwyer said.

While spring racing plans are on the table, Mithen is still yet to decide on the filly’s next target.

“Plans are still undecided. Peter Moody will have a look at her tomorrow with Henry and decide on either a short freshen up and keep her going to possibly the 1000 Guineas, or tip her out and aim at the autumn,” Mithen said.

“We have built the system so she can come back to Rosemont for a week, and be treated like a princess and then head to the water walker, and be under our pre-training roof. We have those tool available to work out what suits her best.”

A Group 1 winner in four countries, Rosemont resident sire Starcraft covered 101 mares last season, showing that breeders are now finally starting to take note.

“Some looked at him as a failed NSW stallion that relocated to Victoria, but that wasn’t the case. I was keen on him and thought he would be a great fit for Victoria as a proven horse. He has had to keep proving himself with great stats off small crops, and impressive sales results,” Mithen said.

“And now with big numbers coming to him, everyone has wised up and his success will only continue to grow. With seven victors for the month, he can certainly get a winner, and he can get a sale result, selling a yearling for $360,000 at Classic this year.”

And, of course, Starcraft colts and geldings are prized items in Hong Kong. The Rosemont sire was among the Top 10 sires in Hong Kong racing this past season (as he was the previous season too).

Starcraft will stand at an unchanged fee of $8,800 at Rosemont Stud this year.

Epona Park’s Jeff Allis was at Caulfield on Saturday to witness one of the farm’s graduates take out the $180,000 VOBIS Gold Reef.

While the horse is now owned by the Hong Kong-based Law family, Allis was just as excited about the Darren Weir trained 3YO Snitzepeg’s success.

“Born and raised at Epona Park with the TTB ‘Train The Brave’ brand…got to be happy when Weir buys one of yours. Nice VOBIS breeder checks in mail. Everyone wins!” Allis exclaimed on social media post race.

“That was awesome wasn’t it, as he is such a small guy, and after a couple of unlucky first runs, it’s great to see him back in the game. Maybe we can aim for something in the spring and have a bit of fun?” Allis told TBV later on.

“As he was working hard on the turn, I was a bit concerned he may have used up all his carrots, but he was able to come away very strongly and score a dominant win in the end.”

“And the perfect result is that an elite trainer like Darren Weir buys your horse out of the ring at Melbourne. That’s gold, as then breeders like myself can receive a nice little kicker on the side, which always helps with expenses and cash flow.”

A proud advocate for the Victorian breeding industry and the VOBIS scheme, Allis said the success of the state’s breeders relied on two key elements.

“One is that we need Victorian-based trainers to buy our horses to race predominantly in the state and, two, that the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale really gets back on its feet providing a more profitable buying bench for our homebreds to be purchased by the local market,’ Allis explained.

Snitzepeg was the result of a clever broodmare purchase by bloodstock agent Sheamus Mills. He bought Snitzepeg’s dam Pegasus Queen in foal to Snitzel from the 2014 Inglis Winter Thoroughbred Sale in Sydney for only $45,000.

As a yearling, Snitzepeg returned a handsome profit for Epona Park when sold through the Three Bridges Thoroughbreds draft at the 2016 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale for $260,000 to Darren Weir and John Foote Bloodstock on behalf of Hong Kong-based Peter Law.

It was the first crop of yearlings bought by Law in Australia under the Weir banner. Interestingly, that first basket of purchases at the 2016 Premier Sale also included 2017 VOBIS Gold Ingot winner Shamport as well as Saturday’s Morphettville winner Choisborder. All were bred in Victoria.

Allis’ Winchelsea based Epona Park is set on 100 acres of picturesque hilly, tree-lined paddocks.

Allis recently appointed esteemed South African trainer Renate Du Plessis as farm manager providing scope for an enhanced breeding operation.

Coming out with her husband Jannie and young daughter to Australia due to the instability in her home country, Du Plessis managed the renowned South African thoroughbred operation Favour Stud.

“By utilising her expertise, we are now focusing more on breeding as she has a wonderful knowledge of international bloodstock and broodmares,” Allis said.

“Renate will be helping to upgrade our band of around twenty mares to produce commercial yearlings and competitive gallopers for the future.”

Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria (TBV) and Harness Breeders Victoria (HBV) are delighted to announce the inaugural Central Victorian Premier Stud Tour on Sunday 16 September 2018.

Members of both breeding associations and guests are invited to embark on a unique tour of Swettenham Stud, one of Victoria’s leading thoroughbred breeding facilities, and Alabar Farm, the largest Standardbred stud in the Southern hemisphere.

The exciting journey will make its first stop at Swettenham Stud in Nagambie, where guests will be greeted by stud proprietor, Adam Sangster, who will lead a tour of the magnificent property and present his six-pronged stallion roster; including Americain, Highland Reel, Puissance De Lune, Rebel Dane, Toronado and Trust In A Gust.

Sangster is thrilled to be part of the inaugural tour and eagerly awaits the chance to welcome guests to Swettenham Stud.

“The joint stud tour is an outstanding initiative, and Swettenham Stud applauds the work of HBV and TBV to offer this opportunity to our breeding communities,” Sangster said.

“It is a great honour for Swettenham to be the very first stop of the tour in its very first year. Our stallions will be ready and waiting to welcome everyone and give them a great show.”

Following the fine English hospitality at Swettenham, guests will be treated to a two-course lunch at La Penelope’s on the picturesque Kirwan Bridge Estate Vinery, then convoyed to Alabar Farms, situated in Koyuga, a short distance from Echuca.

The beautiful Alabar Stud at Koyuga

Since its inception in the 1950s, Alabar Farms has steadily grown to become a front-runner in the standardbred breeding industry. Constantly in pursuit of future leading stallions, some of the finest sires to grace the Alabar pastures include Kentucky, Windshield Wiper, Whats Next, Golden Greek, Fake Left, Safely Kept, Armbro Operative, Presidential Ball and Village Jasper.

The progeny of Alabar stallions have an impeccable record; providing 16 Globe Derby Awards for Leading Juvenile Stallion, 15 Globe Awards for Leading Stallion (by individual winners), and 8 Globe Derby Awards for Leading Stallion (by prizemoney).

Meanwhile, the current Alabar stallion roster has sired the Southern Hemisphere winners of over a staggering $205 million.

Tour guests will observe a semen collection and lab demonstration, followed by a stallion parade of the Alabar residents.

Alabar Bloodstock General Manager, Brett Coffey, echoes Sangster’s sentiments and notes that the tour is in essence a celebration of Victoria’s vibrant horse breeding industry.

“Alabar is delighted to partner with HBV, TBV and Swettenham Stud to put on a truly unique day for all those interested in horse breeding,” Coffey said.

“Victoria is one of the best places to breed horses anywhere in the world and this opportunity to go behind the scenes at two leading farms is one not to be missed.”

“Whether you are more into thoroughbreds or standardbreds, we are all horse lovers and this cross-code stud tour is a really exciting promotion,” he said.

Bookings for the Central Victorian Premium Stud Tour open on Wednesday 1 August are strictly limited. Tickets for HBV and TBV members are $70, while guest or non-member tickets are priced at $80.

To redeem the discounted member rate, sign up as a HBV or TBV member today!

Further information and booking forms can be found at www.vicharnessbreeders.org.au.