The inaugural TBV Instagram Foal Photo Competition has been run and won for 2017.

And the ‘Most liked’ award has gone to an inquisitive Nostradamus filly owned by Cranbourne breeder and trainer Charlotte Littlefield.

Littlefield and Mornington’s Caitrin Kelly who co-submitted the photo win a raceday lunch package in the Chairman’s Club at Flemington generously donated by Racing.com

The photo is of Charlotte’s Nostradamus x Bergerac Rose filly, who is inquisitively playing with Caitrin’s daughter Maeve.

The filly was conceived on Melbourne Cup day and was bred by Charlotte Littlefield and Julian Hay at their Cranbourne property.

“The photo is of our beautiful filly Blinx who is from my first winner as a trainer, Bergerac Rose,” Littlefield said.

“This is her first foal and our first that we foaled down ourselves.

“Maeve is her little friend. Maeve adores the horses and ice cream…this will be Maeve’s first share in a racehorse!”

Littlefield kicked off her professional trainer career with Bergerac Rose and now has about 12 to14 in work, including some in pre-training and being broken in.

Born and raised in the UK, Littlefield was an established event rider who represented her country as part of the British Young Rider Team in Poland 2003.

Her love of thoroughbred racing started at a young age when she would attend the Goodwood races with her parents, before taking a job riding trackwork for a point-to-point and national hunt yard in Somerset.

Littlefield moved to Australia 11 years ago, where she has continued to compete in eventing, along with pursuing her passion in flat racing.

Wanting to put her eventing knowledge and racing experience into practice, Littlefield feels that she can come in with a different angle to training thoroughbreds.

“My eventing background has been very handy, as once they’re taught to track work we can incorporate some dressage and jumping into their routine. We believe that if they can do a preliminary level dressage test and a preliminary horse trials, then they are ready to race.”

Although Bergerac Rose will be having a year off this year from breeding, she will be heading back to the breeding barn early next year, along with Charlotte’s other mare Offshore Sham.

Offshore Sham has a Helmet colt at next year’s Inglis Premier Yearling Sale as Lot 766.

The full set of entries can be found at the TBV Instagram Foal Photo Competition.

Yarran’s Rachel Doherty will be enjoying a nice glass of local Mitchelton wine this festive season after her entry was awarded a prize in the TBV Instagram Foal Photo competition.

Yarran’s beautiful little Nostradamus filly was captured being a little cheeky and not at all impressed by being disturbed trying to get a drink from mum! For the lovely photo, Rachel and her husband John get to enjoy a case of wine kindly donated by Mitchelton Wines.

The winning photo is of Rachel and John’s own mare, Magic Pulse and her filly. They bought Magic Pulse at this year’s Inglis Great Southern Sale in foal to Rosemont Stud’s First Crop Sire.

Rachel was born into thoroughbreds with not only her parents, but also her grandfather, working at Fairdale Stud near Palmerston North in New Zealand.

“I grew up learning everything at Fairdale Stud– I was the third generation to work there from my family,” Rachel said.

Through her breeding industry work Rachel met John, who similarly had a strong background in the industry particularly at Coolmore Stud in Ireland.

“We then travelled and worked everywhere together, including a season in China when we took over the first eleven thoroughbred broodmares to China in the 90’s.

After stints in Japan and New Zealand, they landed at Darley’s Northwood property.

“Grace (their child) was four when we moved to Northwood, where we worked for the next eight years.

“We still had our own small property for our mares, and a handful of clients, and in May we moved down the road to Yarran Thoroughbreds.”

Having taken over management of Yarran mid-year, the upcoming yearling sales will be their first for the farm.

They are taking a draft of eleven yearlings to the Inglis Premier Sale with an array of sires. Their Lot 619 Kuroshio filly received a nice upgrade during the recent Spring Racing Carnival.

Her dam, Summer Wine, is a half-sister to Group 2 Caulfield Sprint winner Snitty Kitty – a horse trainer Henry Dwyer is targeting towards February’s Oakleigh Plate.

The full set of entries can be found at the TBV Instagram Foal Photo Competition.

Tom from Miranda Park with their Trust In a Gust foal & a $100 TAB voucher

A couple of stunning photos of Victorian bred foals have been awarded $100 TAB vouchers as part of the TBV Instagram Foal Gallery Competition.

The vouchers, kindly donated by TBV’s principal sponsor Tabcorp, will no doubt be put to good use over the summer by the winners: Euroa’s Lauriston Park and Hesket’s Miranda Park.

The two entries were judged the two best quality photos by Racing Photos Head of Photography John Donegan.

Miranda Park’s Gary O’Meara entered a picture taken by Jarrod Testro of its Trust In A Gust x Esprits Choice colt.

Trust In A Gust x Esprits Choice colt

Meanwhile, Kathie Bakker scored Lauriston Park’s prize for the very cute picture of its Rock Hero x Paleste colt.

Rock Hero x Paleste colt

The full set of entries visit the TBV Instagram Foal Photo Competition.

It was another brilliant weekend on the track for Woodside Park Stud stallion, Written Tycoon with his daughter, the Ellerton-Zahra trained mare, Booker saluting in the Group 2 Thousand Guineas Prelude at Caulfield on Underwood Stakes Day.

Booker is now the 21st individual stakes winner for the Champion Victorian sire, and her hard-earned victory will give her a deserved shot at Group 1 glory in the Thousand Guineas.

Lightly raced, Booker has now won twice and been placed three times at Group level from five starts with prize money earnings of $279,000.

Woodside Park Stud’s Matt Tillett was delighted with the win, as he felt she had always been a quality galloper that was group class.

“It was so pleasing to see her win on the weekend, she’s a very talented mare, and as the track and conditions suited, she could show her true ability,” Tillett said.

“It was a great thrill for the owner-breeders too. Bill Rigg and Tony Freebairn have been friends of ours for a very long time. They are actually both childhood friends with my father, Murray, and they sent the mare originally to Written Tycoon to support us. It’s a terrific result.”

Booker was a $230,000 Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale purchase by part-owners  Barrie and Midge Griffiths, successful thoroughbred breeders in their own right.

“I remember Barrie Griffiths came and grabbed me at the sales and said I had to come and look at this yearling, which turned out to be Booker,” Tillett said.

“I honestly don’t think I had seen a better-looking Written Tycoon filly, and I agreed that he should buy her. Both breeders stayed in the ownership along with Nick Psaltis who has raced a number of horses with David Moodie, so it’s a good little team.”

The win is also a silver lining for owner Barrie Griffiths after the news his other star mare, Group 2 winner Heatherly is to be retired, after suffering her second bleed after trying her heart out in the Group 1 Moir.

Booker is the first foal out of winning Flying Spur (Danehill) mare Noondie, who is a half-sister to Listed winner Tranquility (Redoute’s Choice) and the stakes-placed mare Impassioned (Redoute’s Choice).

With a star-studded book of fillies and mare lining up in the breeding barn for Written Tycoon this season, and another crop of outstanding foals on the ground, without doubt, there is still so much to come for the Champion Victorian sire.

You could say two recent Written Tycoon arrivals are already a little bit famous in the racing and sporting world – at least indirectly.

First we’ve got Lauriston Thoroughbred Farm’s fill out of super star Group 1 winning filly Gold Edition…

Lauriston Thoroughbred Farm’s Written Tycoon x Gold Edition filly

And then there is Billy and Nicole Slater’s Written Tycoon foal out of their Al Maher mare Hamam. With Billy winning the NRL Grand Final on Sunday with the Melbourne Storm, you could say this colt has already received a ‘pedigree update’ of sorts!

Melbourne Storm star Billy Slater with his Written Tycoon x Haman colt (pic-Nicole Slater)

Swettenham’s Trust In A Gust has certainly repaid his debut season breeders, with the first of his foals all consistently stamped with quality, power and bone.

The young stallion has now furnished into an incredible looking stallion following his dual Group 1 racing career.

Brian Gorman, Swettenham’s General Manager, has been impressed by Trust In A Gust’s professionalism in the breeding barn.

“He is covering another first-rate book of mares this season, and he is doing everything right in the shed, he has started off in great form,” Brian said.

“We have been thrilled with the standard of foals on the ground. He is stamping his quality into the foals and passing on his best characteristics. They all have strong shoulders, great bodies and plenty of bone.”

Swettenham’s resident photographer, Rachel Ritchie has been busy taking snaps of some of Trust In A Gust’s youngsters. Brian Gorman comments on each of these foals.

Trust In A Gust x Maitresse

“Owned by Stuart Pickworth and Swettenham, he is a good, strong type of colt. Commands mare, Maitresse, is a half to Alister Clark winner Domesky and being a class mare herself, she has also put plenty of quality into the foal. We are very pleased with the result.”

Trust In A Gust x Sulmita

“From the Estate of the Late Michael Niall, the Sulmita colt has “look at me” presence with a flashy white blaze. He is a leggy foal, with plenty of bone and a great body. From a six-time winning dam, Sulmita, the family boasts black type performers Another Victor, Spook and Suit.”

Trust In A Gust x Hotel Sierra

“Owned by Michael Leonard, the Hotel Sierra colt has been born in the image of his father. Stamped with a strong shoulder and great bone, he is an outstanding first foal.”

Trust In A Gust x Haumea

“Owned by Adam Sangster this is a lovely type of filly, just all quality. A Tasmanian Oaks runner, Haumea is a half sister to NZ filly of the year, Bonneval’s dam Imposingly. From a black type studded family, including Group 1 winners Champagne and St Remis.”

There is also ongoing recent international form in Trust In A Gust’s pedigree, with the top galloper Thunder Snow (Helmet), now a dual group 1 winner.

Trust In A Gust’s dam, Subtle Breeze is a half sister to Thunder Snow’s grand-dam, Red Slippers by Nureyev.

As a racehorse, Trust in A Gust had two qualities that stood out in his racing career, natural talent, and raw courage, with victories in the stallion making Group 1 MRC Rupert Clarke Stakes over 1400m and in the time-honoured VRC Toorak Handicap over 1600m.

In his racing career, Trust In A Gust won the VOBIS Gold Eureka, VOBIS Gold Star, VOBIS Gold Sprint and the VOBIS Gold Carat at Caulfield.

“This is the ideal VOBIS stallion, and one of the first things you look for at a sale is the VOBIS sticker!” trainer Darren Weir said.

For more information on any of the stallions, or to take a virtual “foal stroll”, please visit the Swettenham Foal Gallery.

The success of a stallion is ultimately measured by the success of his progeny on the racetrack, albeit some three or four years after he first arrives at stud.

But success can sometimes be predicted by the quality of the foals when they arrive, and this could just be the case for Dandino (GB)

The arrival of his first foals in the 2017 season has created some excitement at Bombora Downs in Bittern on the Mornington Peninsula and rightly so.

Bombora Downs stud principal Christoph Bruechert has breathed a sigh of relief with the safe arrival of the first of Dandino’s foals.

“So far we have two foals by Dandino on the farm and if he is starting as he means to go on, then Dandino will exert great influence on his progeny.

“Both foals have a lot of their father about them and the colt from O’Marie is just a little version of his dad which can only be a good thing.”

DANDINO (GB) as a foal
DANDINO (GB) x O'Marie colt

Dandino is an outstanding type, standing 16 hands with a wonderful temperament. He successfully campaigned in England, USA, Canada and Australia, winning Group races in all four countries.

Although only winning to Group 2 level, he was placed twice in Group 1 races, including running second in the Caulfield Cup at his first start in his Spring Carnival campaign.

He has an outstanding race record, having won 9 times from 37 starts, won or placed in 18 Group/Stakes races, and having won from 1800 metres through to 2700 metres.
He started his racing career as a 2YO when he placed 2nd, raced until 8 years old and had a blistering turn of foot.

Dandino is the son of Dansili who, from 14 crops of racing age (so far), has supplied 185 stakes performers with 71 Stakes winners.

Dansili is now emerging as a force in the broodmare sire ranks, plus also as a sire of sires with many of his sons at stud in Great Britain, USA, Japan, Europe and New Zealand.

Stakes winners from this emerging sire line dynasty are coming on a regular basis and with the quality of his first foals, there is every chance that this will continue with Dandino in Australia.

The first foals of Swettenham Stud shuttle sire Toronado (Ire) lit up the ring at the Tattersalls Foal Sale last week in Newmarket, UK.

This included topping Day 2 of the sale courtesy of a colt that made 190,000 guineas (AUD 334,130).

 

These first foal sale results bode very well for the many southern hemisphere breeders who had a total of 175 mares covered by Toronado in 2015. He is expected to cover a similar amount of mares this breeding season at Nagambie.

The Day 2 top-priced foal at Tattersalls was purchased by Jim McCartan who was acting for Michael Carty of Kilmoney Cottage Stud.

“We thought he was an exceptional foal and we waited for him.  We went to see him again in the back ring and it confirmed our impression,” said McCartan.

“Toronado was a very good horse and this one’s been bought for resale, so fingers crossed!”

Another Toronado foal to make good money on Day 2 was the colt from Crown (Royal Applause) that sold for 145,000 guineas.  A half-brother to this year’s classy juvenile Global Applause (Listed Sandown National Stakes), he was purchased by German pin-hooker Ronald Rauscher.

On Friday, Amanda Skiffington had the final say on the Toronado – Lily Link colt at 120,000 guineas.  He’s from a half-sister to Group 1 Northern Dancer Stakes winner Redwood (High Chaparral) who stood at Westbury Stud in NZ.

On Saturday, Toronado’s top-priced foal was the filly from Key Light (Acclamation).  Sold for 70,000 guineas to Yeomanstown Stud, she is a half-sister to Group 2 Flying Childers Stakes winner Beacon (Paco Boy).

Toronado (High Chaparral) had 41 lots catalogued which was the biggest representation of any first-season sire at the Tattersalls Foal Sale.

“We are thrilled but not surprised with the results from Tattersalls.  Toronado has attracted high-quality mares in both hemispheres and the prices reflect that same quality in his foals,” Swettenham Stud’s nominations manager Rachel Spriggens said.

Swettenham is accepting late-season bookings to all its stallions – Toronado is priced at a $22,000 (inc gst) service fee.

Puissance De Lune was certainly a showy type on the track.

Now the Swettenham Stud sire is passing on his ‘show-off’ traits to some of his progeny, the first of which arrived this breeding season.

Swettenham staff member Katelyn Butler put up the above picture of the Puissance De Lune – Chapent foal on Twitter over the weekend and it got a great reception.

Darren Weir & Adam Sangster with Puissance De Lune at Swettenham Stud

Darren Weir & Adam Sangster with Puissance De Lune at Swettenham Stud

The filly was born looking like a chestnut like her mum, but the grey ‘goggles’ around her eyes showed she was destined to go grey, just like her dad.

Now, two months later, she is ‘shedding’ her chestnut coat and gradually replacing it with her grey genes.

The filly has a bright future ahead. She is a sibling to five foals out of Chapent (Peintre Celebre), all of who have won races including 11 times winner and stakes placed Hank’s Nephew (Danbird) as well as handy Adelaide three-year-old Chapel City (Ilovethiscity).

Meanwhile, Darren Weir visited his former steed Puissance De Lune at Nagambie’s Swettenham Stud on the weekend.

Accompanied by the stallion’s owner Gerry Ryan of Limerick Lane Thoroughbreds and stud principal Adam Sangster, Weir was impressed with the first foals of his former four times stakes winning horse.

Having won at stakes level from 1400 metres through to 2500 metres, there is no doubt Weir will embrace the versatility of the son of Shamardal’s progeny.

Meanwhile, they will be growing grey hairs as they enjoy the pastures of Swettenham Stud and other breeding farms around Australia.

The first foals by Spendthrift Australia’s Group 1 winning stallions Hampton Court, Jimmy Creed (USA) and Warrior’s Reward (USA) are earning high marks for their exceptional quality.

“They’re receiving high praise, and deservedly so,” Spendthrift’s general manager Garry Cuddy said.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the results and the support from around the country.”

Victorian breeder Gary O’Meara of Miranda Park is enthusiastic about the eye-catching foals on the ground by all three of Spendthrift’s stallions.

“My clients and I have been big supporters of Spendthrift,” O’Meara said.

“We have a lovely filly by Hampton Court out of Just Push On that is very strong through the shoulder and correct with great bone and a good body.

“The Jimmy Creed foals are very athletic and have inherited their sire’s great looks and quality, and the Warrior’s Reward out of Southern Tip has definitely been stamped.  He is exactly like his sire in the head, and he is very correct with good leg.”

Spendthrift’s Redoute’s Choice colt Swear gave a great sight leading Saturday’s Group 1 Victoria Derby field into the straight before finishing a meritorious fifth at Flemington.

“We had a nice run, but got flushed out early. It was a good effort,” jockey Tommy Berry said.

In Sydney on Saturday, Spendthrift’s Fastnet Rock mare Cana won at Rosehill and hours later Spendthrift’s Kentucky-bred Fastnet Rock filly Cover Song won the Group 3 Autumn Miss Stakes at Santa Anita.

Service fees for Spendthrift Australia stallions are:  Hampton Court ($8,800 inc gst), Jimmy Creed ($8,800 inc gst) and Warrior’s Reward ($11,000 inc gst).  For more information, please contact Garry Cuddy (0410 451 595), Josh Rix (0499 880 855), Mark Szczepanowski (0499 444 052).

He was a star on the track and is now set to take the auction ring by storm.

Swettenham’s Al Shaqab shuttle sire Toronado (Ire) has 41 lots catalogued for the Tattersalls Foal Sale, the most of any first crop sire this year.

The Newmarket sale has a catalogue with 2,395 yearlings, foals and breeding stock catalogued from November 21 to December 1.

Toronado dominates the Foal Sale commencing on November 23.  The Swettenham Stud shuttler covered 152 mares in his initial northern book at the English National Stud and there will be as many foals again from his first crop conceived at Nagambie last season.

Swettenham and Toronado received another Group 1 update when Prized Icon won the Victoria Derby on Saturday.  His half-sister Circus Polka (Stravinsky) foaled a Toronado colt at Nagambie in August.

Highlights of foals by Toronado catalogued for the Tattersalls Foal Sale include:

  • Lot 496 – Filly x My Broken Drum (Slickly)
    Dam was exported to England last year after foaling (Aus) winners Forbidden Kisses (Bel Esprit) and Flying Shadow (Dane Shadow).
  • Lot 555 – Colt x Inner Sea (Henrythenavigator)
    Pedigree received a significant update on October 16 when his dam’s half-brother Erupt (Dubawi) claimed the Group 1 Canadian International at Woodbine.  The Niarchos Family homebred had won last year’s Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris at Longchamp.
  • Lot 556 – Filly x Rainbow’s Edge (Rainbow Quest)
    Half-sister to Peacock (Paco Boy) who carried The Queen’s silks to victory in last year’s Listed Fairway Stakes at Newmarket.
  • Lot 777 – Colt x Crown (Royal Applause)
    Half-brother to Ed Dunlop’s leading 2yo colt Global Applause (Mayson), a Listed National Stakes winner at Sandown in May from Al Shaqab’s Group 2 winner Mehmas.
  • Lot 816 – Filly x Unquenchable (Kingmambo)
    Half-sister to Havana Cooler (Ire), dual-hemisphere stakes winner of the Doncaster Prelude and Group 3 Royal Parma Stakes.
  • Lot 879 Colt x Lily Link (Rail Link)
    From a half-sister to Group 1 Northern Dancer Stakes winner Redwood (High Chaparral) who stood at Westbury Stud in NZ.
  • Lot 1242 – Filly x Key Light (Acclamation)
    Half-sister to Group 2 Flying Childers Stakes winner Beacon (Paco Boy).  Second-dam Luna won Group 1 Phoenix 2YO Stakes at Leopardstown.

Several mares in foal to Toronado have been catalogued at the world-renowned Tattersalls Breeding Stock Sale starting on November 28.

Conquete (Kyllachy) is first to parade as Lot 1380 from a final cover on April 25.  She is a daughter of Longchamp stakes winner Chesnut Bird (Storm Bird) from the family of Group 1 Melbourne Cup winner At Talaq.

European breeders raved about the first foals by Toronado earlier this year and their Australian counterparts have echoed those sentiments now that his southern foals are arriving en masse.

Toronado (Ire) is an outstanding physical specimen and shuttles from the English National Stud to Adam Sangster’s Swettenham Stud in conjunction with Al Shaqab Racing.

A Champion Group 1 Miler, he covered 174 mares at Nagambie last year and among the first to foal was Riverina Red (Testa Rossa). Her Toronado filly was born at Riversdale Farm on August 1.

“She is a first foal and was boxed for a week to strengthen,” studmaster Nick Hodges explained. “Adam inspected her while up here recently for the Hunter Valley stallion parades. She’s a forward-looking filly with a big backside and has really come on in the last few weeks.”

Riverina Red was a 2yo placegetter at Flemington and is owned by Swettenham client John Connellan who has raced class stayers like G2 Herbert Power Stakes winner Yakama (Umatilla).

Irish-bred mare Namurian Sunset foaled one of the first Toronado colts at Tyreel Stud in NSW.

Namurian Sunset (Thousand Words) won at Gowran Park for trainer Paddy Prendergast and was purchased straight off the track for 60,000gns (AUD 120,435) at Tattersalls. She is a half-sister to Group 1 racehorse and sire Ransom O’ War and is owned by Victorian breeder Geoff Russell.

“He’s seriously good-looking,” Tyreel Stud manager Robert Sims said. “There’s width in the shoulders and hips with plenty of scope. He’s intelligent and really swaggers around the paddock.

“We would recommend Toronado to any breeder on the strength of this colt. He’s a belter.”

Among the Victorian farms with Toronado foals on the ground is Glenelg Park in the Balmattum Hills just outside Euroa.

Studmaster Danny Swain welcomed an early filly out of Scarlet Moretta (Fastnet Rock). “She’s a first foal and isn’t overly big,” Swain said. “But she’s a ball of muscle and is a very strong filly.”

Scarlet Moretta won a Sale juvenile on debut and was also successful at Morphettville for trainer Phillip Stokes. She hails from a French Group 1 winning family developed by Daniel Wildenstein was sold as a broodmare prospect for $87,5000 at the Inglis Great Southern Sale last year. Agent Adrian Hancock was acting for Adelaide breeder Harry Perks.

There’s another half-dozen foals at home base in Nagambie.

“Toronado is certainly stamping them with great bone, muscle and athleticism,” Swettenham’s marketing manager Rachel Spriggens said. “He has that X Factor every stud looks for in a stallion.”

Among the new arrivals is a colt from Circus Polka. She is a Stravinksy half-sister to G1 Champagne Stakes winner Prized Icon who is gunning for a Group 3 in the Gloaming Stakes at Rosehill this Saturday.

There’s an eye-catching filly out of Noetic (Cape Cross) at Swettenham. Her dam earned minor black-type at Flemington and is from the immediate family of Champion USA Sprinter Housebuster.

“Toronado will cover another strong book of mares this season,” Spriggens confirmed. “There’s a significant number of mares revisiting him on the strength of his first foals and we have limited spots available at $22,000.”

Broodmare owners can inspect Swettenham’s stallions by appointment. For bookings or further information, contact Brian Gorman (0429 660 266) or Rachel Spriggens (0439 101 195).

It’s 3am. It’s raining and it’s cold. An alarm sounds and Lauriston Park’s Chris Bakker, who has already been up once again stirs.

He grabs his coat and within minutes is in the middle of a paddock he helps a mare bring a new life into the world.

Stud life is not easy; the hours are long, the conditions often trying. Things go wrong, horses are unpredictable. Nobody, Chris says, would choose such a lifestyle for monetary gain.

“At the end of the day it’s the love of it that draws you.”

The love, for example, of that moment when a newborn takes his first wobbly steps. There is, Chris says, nothing like it.

Despite having supervised hundreds of foalings, Chris never tires of the process. When a healthy foal arrives, when the mare turns around to nuzzle him, it is a relief and a thrill.

In no time at all the foal is up and facing the world and Chris loves that too – “you are the first person there to see their personality emerge, it is always amazing.”

Whilst always tired at this time of year Chris says he would not change a thing – “I love every minute of it.”

Rock Hero

Rock Hero

And the 2016 season is a particularly special one for Lauriston with the arrival of the first foals for the stud’s well credentialled young stallion Rock Hero.

A stakes winning son of champion sire Fastnet Rock and the outstanding race mare Gallant Tess, Rock Hero served a strong book of mares upon his retirement last year and his first outstanding foals are on the ground.

And Chris could not be happier with them.

 “They are strong athletic types with lovely heads and great temperaments,” he said.

“It is still early days with his first foals just a few weeks old but we are very happy with them at this stage, they are correct with good hindquarters and they have plenty of personality.”

Hailing from one of the world’s great stallion families with his seventh dam (close up by today’s standards) being the incomparable Mumtaz Mahal, Rock Hero is the perfect VOBIS horse whose sire Fastnet Rock already proving his worth as a sire of sires.

Importantly, Rock Hero is nominated for the lucrative VOBIS Sires program.

A stallion who boasts outstanding statistics (around 69% winners-to-runners and just short of 8% stakes winners to runners), Fastnet Rock has five stakes producing sons. Foxwedge, Hinchinbrook, Wanted, Stryker and Smart Missile are all proving the value of this strong branch of the Danehill sire line.

For further information on Rock Hero contact Lauriston Park’s Chris and Kathie Bakker (0427 903 353) or LP Stallion’s Julie Nairn (0402 901 910) or email lauristonpark@bigpond.com or lpstallions@gmail.com

Full information on Rock Hero

Story contributed by Kristen Manning

This is a story of an orphan thoroughbred foal and his breeder who have succeeded despite the challenges placed before them.

On the evening of September 10th, Glen Eden Thoroughbreds’ mare Manhattan Dream decided it was time for her first foal to greet the world.

The Kilmore based farm run by experienced horseperson Sonia Carboni greeted colt that evening by Blue Gum Farm’s sire War.

Sadly, Manhattan Dream passed away twenty minutes later leaving behind a healthy albeit now orphaned foal.

The local breeding network swung into action (as it does often in these unfortunate circumstances) and a mare, Razz and Red, was offered by Euroa’s Noor Elaine Farm. The newborn, nicknamed Atomic, took to the foster mum quickly.

“She was a beautiful mare with an incredibly kind nature,” Sonia said.

But, alas, when Atomic was just six weeks old, Razz and Red presented with colic and was euthanased with a suspected twisted bowel.

“It was very upsetting to all involved,” said Sonia.

“Poor little Atomic was alone once again. Efforts to get him to drink from a bottle or bucket were futile. He was very depressed and flat although he would eat hay and drink water.”

And here is where the story took a unique twist.

“A couple of nanny mares were trialled to find a kind companion and finally we found Brambles. “

Brambles, owned by Terry Henderson and Simon O’Donnell’s OTI Racing, won more than $825,000 on the track under the tutelage of Peter Moody. He won the Group 1 Queensland Derby and ran in the 2014 Melbourne Cup.

Brambles in action on the track

Brambles was retired at age seven due to a tendon injury and called Kilmore home at Simon O’Donnell’s property.

“Bramble is a very gentle kind soul and befriended Atomic,” Sonia said.

After the two setbacks with the deceased mares, Atomic fell behind in terms of weight, but with Brambles on the scene he improved markedly.

“He is a tough little mite!” exclaims Sonia.

Glen Eden – orphan foals in yard

Glen Eden – Brambles & Atomic

Happily four months later, Atomic is now doing really well and putting on lots of weight.

And he also has a new friend in the form of another orphan, a Reward for Effort filly from another farm.

“They are in love and sleep together all the time,” Sonia said.

Sonia’s story of double tragedy and ultimately happiness for two young orphaned foals is a great example of the care breeders have for their horses.

And it is also a great story of the work done by retired racehorses, in this case a genuine retired star of the track.

Spendthrift Australia shuttler Jimmy Creed (USA) has topped Session 8 of the fortnight-long Keeneland November Sale with a foal that made $110,000.

The colt from Jimmy Creed’s first crop was purchased by Alistair Roden who bought him as a pin-hook prospect for next year’s yearling sales. The Irish born agent worked at stud farms all over the world including Australia and New Zealand before settling in Kentucky.

The Jimmy Creed colt was bred by Hidden Springs Farm and is from Saratoga stakes winner Judy Soda (Personal Flag). Her first foal Germaniac (Henny Hughes) won the LR Frank Whiteley Stakes at Laurel.

“He’s a big boy and a head turner,” bloodstock consultant Frances Karon said. “There’s a whole lotta horse here.”

Jimmy Creed also had two filly foals make $55,000 at Keeneland. The trio are from his first crop conceived after a 10-start career for Spendthrift owner B. Wayne Hughes. He won the G1 Malibu Stakes (1400m) at Santa Anita and was being set for the G1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint before an ankle injury forced him into retirement.

Spendthrift stands Jimmy Creed (Distorted Humor) at its Romsey farm for a “Share The Upside” fee of $11,000 (inc gst). He is also available at $8,800 (inc gst) on a standard live foal contract.

Prominent Victorian breeders and racehorse owners David and Jenny Moodie are being repaid in spades for the care and compassion given to their 11 year-old broodmare Royal Glow.

The mare came back from the brink while being educated as a baby and now her rising star son Kinglike is being set for the stallion-making G1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on October 31.

Back when Royal Glow was a young two year-old, the Moodies were advised by vets she should be put down after a stable accident at their Macedon Ranges property ‘Yungaburra’.

“She flipped over and banged her head that badly it left her blinded,” Jenny recalled this week.

“You have to be realistic when those things happen, but we decided to try and save her for stud.”

Royal Glow was paired in a paddock with Polar Rose, the dam of Contract Racing’s 1996 Caulfield Cup winner Arctic Scent, and the older mare was fitted with a bell to alert the filly when she was heading for a drink or feed bin.

She followed Polar Rose everywhere but within a year began showing signs of greater independence.

“David noticed she was getting about much better on her own so we got the vets in for another eye test. There was still no vision on the left side but we were thrilled when they said sight was slowly returning to her right eye.”

In her first two seasons at stud, Royal Glow foaled the winners King Among Kings and Royal Haunt. Royal Haunt was a very handy horse for the Moodies being unbeaten in three starts in Australia (including a Listed race) before being sold by to Hong Kong. Mirage raced and won his only start in Hong Kong, but was considered a barrier rogue. He has since returned to the care of the Peter Moody stables and saluted at Rosehill in June.

But it is Royal Glow’s foal of breeding season 2012, the now Peter Moody trained Kinglike, that might well be a true superstar.

“He could be the best horse we’ve raced, better than our Golden Slipper winner Crystal Lily,” David said after Kinglike won the G2 Danehill Stakes at Flemington last month.

“He’s been doing extraordinary things in training and will improve again for the Coolmore.”

Kinglike is by Darley’s champion sire Exceed And Excel and Royal Glow (King’s Best) is a half-sister to Contract Racing stakes winners Nediym’s Glow (G3 TBV Stakes) and Red Colossus (G3 Victoria Hcp).

Jockey Glen Boss believes Kinglike is the next star on the horizon.

Royal Glow’s son Kinglike wins the Group 2 Danehill Stakes at Flemington

“He has so much power and runs sectionals only good horses can. I can’t wait for the Coolmore.”

Neither can his owners. “We’re trying to keep a lid on his potential,” David admitted.

“He’s got the pedigree and a win in the Coolmore will make him a valuable stallion prospect.”

Hoofnote: Royal Glow delivered another gift for the Moodies on the weekend when she foaled a Snitzel colt at Woodside Park in Tylden. It is expected the mare will return to Exceed and Excel this covering season.

Woodside Park stallion Zoustar was one of our fastest, most highly rated and most handsome colts in recent years and now he might be the most fertile young stallion in the country, too.

With studmasters all over the country raving about the first crop of Zoustar foals, they are also delighted by how quickly their mares are going in foal to him.

Zoustar alternates between Widden Stud and Woodside Park and his fertility at the Victorian nursery is in the exceptional range.

“From the first 22 mares scanned, 20 of them are in foal,” Woodside Park stud manager Gerard Jones said.

“He was the fastest racehorse I’ve seen and it looks like his swimmers are the same!”

Zoustar covered an enormous black-type first book of 185 mares at Widden Stud last year recording an amazing fertility of almost 90%.

“When breeding your most commercial mares to the very best stallions, it’s vital they get in foal first go,” Phoenix Broodmare Farm owner Damian Gleeson said.

“I have a number of first season foals on my farm and the Zoustars a long way in front. I’m delighted we’re getting so many positive scan results to him.”

Zoustar (Northern Meteor) was a Group 1 winner of the Golden Rose and Coolmore Stud Stakes and is standing for a $44,000 (inc gst) service fee.

At the current rate of positive scan results, he could have his whole book in foal by the end of October.

Mornington Peninsula’s Ducks Crossing Farm has welcomed the first ever foal from its own stallion, 2013 VRC Derby winner Polanski.

Born at 10pm on Monday, 7th September, the foal colt was out of Close Embrace, a Zabeel mare.

Polanski with part owner Ross Warner

The mare is owned by Ross Warner, a part owner of Polanski, who was almost as elated to see the arrival of the colt at Tuerong as he was in winning the Derby at Flemington!

A Smart Missile colt out of Close Embrace sold to Caulfield trainer Mick Price for $170,000 at this year’s Inglis Premier Yearling Sale.

The racing story of Polanski and how he became a stallion at Ducks Crossing is an unique one.

He cost his trainer, Robbie Laing, just $4,000 at auction but would go on to win a VRC Derby packed full of high quality horse flesh.

After winning as a two year old at Caulfield, the entire son of Rakti went on to win three black type races in a row during the spring of 2013 – the Listed UCI Stakes, the Group 3 Norman Robinson Stakes and finally the Group 1 VRC Derby.

In winning the Derby, Polanski beat three time Group 1 winning Criterion; Hong Kong Group 1 winning Thunder Fantasy; recent Group 2 winner Complacent (a top fancy for this Spring’s Group 1 staying features); ATC Derby runner up Tupac Amaru; and QLD Derby runner up Pinstripe Lane.

A serious injury in the autumn of 2014 put an end to the exciting career of Polanski which resulted in him finding a home at Ducks Crossing Farm for stallion duties.

In his first year Polanski covered 49 mares standing at a value fee of $5,500 (inc. GST).

Ducks Crossing is a boutique thoroughbred breeding and equine veterinary based on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria.

It is operated by resident equine veterinarian, Dr Jacqui McGregor who has been involved with the veterinary care of Polanski since he was purchased by Robbie Laing as a yearling.

Victoria’s Woodside Park and Widden Stud and are celebrating the arrival of the first foal by their exciting stallion Zoustar.

Zoustar, a speed machine, is the best performed son of Northern Meteor to go to stud and his foals will be arriving in abundance this spring.

The first-born is a colt from Irish bred stakes winner Pasar Silbano (Elnadim). She won the LR The Curragh Stakes (1000m) before crossing the Atlantic to claim a Group 3 in the Habra Stakes (1200m) at Santa Anita.

“He is a really nice foal, correct with plenty of substance,” Edinglassie Stud’s Mick Talty said. “I like what I see as we have a couple of our best mares in foal to Zoustar.”

Covered on September 1 last year, Pasar Silbano was one of the very first of 185 mares served by Zoustar, who is now at Woodside Park Stud in Victoria getting ready for his second season, priced again at $44,000 (inc gst).

Racing legend and Australia’s most popular first season sire in 2014, Fiorente now has his first foal on the ground…and it didn’t take her long to get up and running!

“We’ve certainly been looking forward to seeing the first of his foals,” Eliza Park International’s Nominations Manager, Mark Lindsay, pointed out.

“Fiorente was sought out by breeders from throughout Australasia when we announced he’d stand at Eliza Park International last spring and he ended up covering an outstanding book of 186 mares – this is just the first of the charge.

“This filly looks like a real chip off the block and burns around the paddock every chance she gets. Who said the Fiorentes wouldn’t run early?”

The filly is out of the Statue of Liberty mare Libertas and it won’t be long before she has plenty of playmates.

Fiorente is of course most famous for winning the Melbourne Cup and giving legendary trainer Gai Waterhouse her first victory in that race. Fiorente also won the Australian Cup over 2000m and the Feehan Stakes at Moonee Valley over 1600m.

He was Timeform rated 125 and won more than $6.2 million in prizemoney during his illustrious career across both hemispeheres.

Fiorente (Ire) stands for a $17,600 (inc gst) fee this year. For further information, phone Mark Lindsay on 0416 334 338.