Tatura’s Kasey Tozer paid special attention yesterday to the Hong Kong International Races.
And it was a joyous occasion for Kasey.
Her happiness had nothing to do with a winning bet, owning a horse in one of the races or even knowing any of the connections.
She had something better than all of that…a half sister to the winner of the Group 1 Hong Kong International Sprint, the Victorian bred Mr Stunning.
More bizarrely, Kasey had bought that half sister, named Go The Cats, for just $480!
Mr Stunning (Exceed and Excel), bred by Tony Santic’s famed Makybe operation at Gnarwarre, collected his maiden Group 1 victory on Sunday and maintained his position as the highest rated racehorse in Hong Kong.
Mr Stunning is the fifth winner from the Dayjur mare, With Fervour, a daughter of 3-time North American Group 1 winner, Fran’s Valentine, and half sister to the 5-time Group 1 winner, With Anticipation. Makybe sold him as a weanling for $110,000 at the 2013 Inglis Great Southern Sale.
He has now won 10 of his 16 outings, with a further three placings, and HK$27 million (approx. AU$4.6 million) in stakes.
But how did Kasey end up with a mare with such a pedigree?
“I was looking for a mare to breed to my cob stallion…I breed Show Hunters,” Kasey said.
“I saw Go The Cats advertised at the Echuca horse sales in 2015. She looked like a good type. I put in a phone bid for $480 and got her,” Kasey said.
(Go The Cats was sold by Makybe to trainer Rick Hore-Lacy for $65,000 via the 2011 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale. Despite showing talent, she was unplaced in 5 starts.)
Kasey’s winning bid of course was made before Mr Stunning had started his career in Hong Kong.
He had been pinhooked the NZB Premier Sale in 2015, won a trial at Avondale in the heavy and was then exported to Hong Kong.
Meanwhile, his dam had been sold by Makybe for $6,000 at the 2013 Inglis Easter Broodmare Sale to Mickleham’s Dr Lesa Oldcastle. With Fervour unfortunately passed away the following year, leaving just one more foal – an as yet unraced 3YO filly by Mossman.
Mr Stunning debuted in early 2016 winning three of his first four starts. It was then that Kasey started to get phone calls enquiring about her Echuca mare purchase, Go The Cats. But Kasey relented.
“She was perfect for what I wanted and I wasn’t going to sell her,” said Kasey
Eventually the aforementioned Dr Oldcastle, found Kasey. Having a interest in the family, Lesa had been looking for some time for Go The Cats.
Kasey decided the lure of breeding with Go the Cats was too big now and entered a foal share arrangement with Dr Oldcastle.
In 2016, Go The Cats was covered by Exceed and Excel’s son Helmet. Foaled in early November, the filly is now a three-quarter relation to a Group 1 winner!
“She’s a beautiful type. We’re really happy with her,” said Kasey.
The big question is what they are going to do with their new arrival in the future.
Like her dam, the foal will be in high demand off the back of Mr Stunning’s success.
But Kasey is in no rush to make a decision.
For now she is happy to have a healthy foal and take in the ‘Stunning’ performances of the foal’s half-brother.