By Bren O’Brien. Reproduced from www.tdnausnz.com.au

Reg Ryan knows what it’s like to breed a top-class horse and he feels promising 3-year-old Neutrality (Sebring) can become that this campaign, starting with Saturday’s Group 3 San Domenico Stakes at Rosehill (he subsequently ran second to Graff).

(TBV member) Ryan, who runs a 60-acre farm at Leneva near Wodonga in Victoria, bred the former star two-year-old Military Rose (General Nediym), who won the 2011 Magic Millions 2YO Classic, and hopes another of the foals from his farm, Neutrality, can kick off his 3-year-old season with his first black-type win.

“It makes it all worthwhile that if you’ve got a horse that can go on and be competitive at the higher grade. I don’t play golf, so this my main interest outside of work,” Ryan, who runs a roofing business, said.

Supporting the farmers

Ryan is in the Hunter Valley this weekend at the stallion parades and says the difference between how dry the area is compared to where his farm is located some 750km south, is stark.

“It’s bad,” he said. “We’ve had 75mm of rain at Wodonga in August already. Up here they haven’t had that for the whole year.”

“China Horse Club have announced that any prizemoney Neutrality gains in the $150,000 San Domenico S. will go to the Buy a Bale and Rural Aid Charities.

Neutrality’s current owners China Horse Club have announced that any prizemoney (he won $28,200) the colt gains in the $150,000 San Domenico Stakes will go to the Buy a Bale and Rural Aid Charities.

Neutrality ready for a big 3yo season

The Peter and Paul Snowden-trained colt is considered one of the leading chances for the San Domenico and Ryan said the trainers have a lot of faith in Neutrality’s ability.

“I talked to Peter Snowden down at the (Inglis) Premier Sale after his run in the Silver Slipper. He wanted to over-race in that race. He led them up the straight, but he blew out,” he said.

“They rated him as the best two-year-old they had at that stage, but if they had have kept racing him, they wouldn’t have had a racehorse, because he mentally wasn’t right.”

Having been given time to mature, Ryan expects that potential to realise into ability for Neutrality this campaign.

A cracking foal

Neutrality was sold for $400,000 at the 2017 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale to China Horse Club, with Ryan confident he had a good candidate for the sales as soon as he set eyes on the colt.

“He was a cracking foal from day one. He was always a big foal. He was great to do anything with. He was easy work as a foal,” Ryan said.

“I reared him at my place up until October of that year and then sent him to Middlebrook Valley Lodge to get him prepped for the Easter Yearling Sale.”

Neutrality’s dam Dama De Noche (Snippets) is one of nine broodmares on Ryan’s property in northern Victoria, while he also has a yearling full sister to Neutrality.

“She’s not as big as him, she’s a smaller filly but I wanted to get a filly out of her anyway, because the mare is getting a bit of age on her,” he said.

“She’s back in foal to Sebring, and so she’ll have another full brother or sister.”

Plans beyond this season for Dama De Noche are on hold for now, as she delivered the previous filly three weeks’ late and wasn’t served until just before Christmas last year. Ryan said that he may have to opt to give her a season off.

A hobby no longer

He continues to build his broodmare stock and recently acquired the Group 2 winning New Zealand mare Satinka (NZ) (Stravinsky) for $200,000 at the National Broodmare Sale, in foal to Zoustar.

As he continues to build his breeding operation, Ryan feels he has long past the stage of being a hobby breeder.

“When you are forking out for service fees and buying mares, you know that it’s gone well past that,” he said. “It’s not a hobby. You have to treat it as a business.”

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