Homebred for Robbie Griffiths, Halvorsen provided an exciting upset win when the son of Magnus took out the VOBIS Gold Carat over 1200 metres at The Valley.

Halvorsen was ridden a treat by Andrew Mallyon, as he defeated his more fancied three-year-old rivals to claim the lucrative $180,000 race for trainer Robbie Griffiths and co-breeders Ray and Anne Wregg.

Halvorsen wins the VOBIS Gold Carat at The Valley (Racing Photos)

The son of Magnus out of the Not A Single Doubt mare, Flourishing, is a homebred gelding, with Griffiths having previously bred his dam after purchasing his grand dam, while Ross and Anne bought into Flourishing as a yearling.

“Flourishing was a great racemare for us, giving us four victories, but unfortunately after a back bout of colic we retired her to stud.”

“Her first foal was a lovely filly by Magnus, we tragically lost as a two-year-old due to a viral infection which was disappointing. We were pleased with the type the mare produced, so we sent her back to Magnus and her next foal was Halvorsen – her full brother.”

Halvorsen is named after Trygve Halvorsen, an Australian ocean racing legend, boat designer and boat builder. Born in Norway, with saltwater entrenched in his veins Trygve, with brother Magnus designed three Sydney to Hobart champions. Trygve also skippered three yachts to victory, while Magnus navigated Freya’s trio of wins.

“It was a connection I liked with not only the stallion name and the success– but also the Scandinavian link to Magnus’s female line.”

“He has a pretty good record too – as it was Halvorsen’s eighth start for three wins, a second and a third, and he would have the perfect record too, had he not been so headstrong as a colt. That cost him dearly – as he was gelded!”

“He still needs a bit of gear to keep his mind on the job, but Robbie has done a great job teaching him to how to relax and breathe in running. His first couple of starts he went like a bullet out of the gates and ran out of puff.”

Foaled by Phoenix Broodmare Farm – Damian Gleeson remembers him as a lovely foal, while the mare still resides at the Euroa nursery. Having last season off, she is now back in foal to Magnus.

Flourishing has an unraced two-year old, full brother called Languishing, and a lovely yearling filly by Unencumbered. 

“Her yearling Unencumbered filly is a great type that is currently doing a simulated yearling prep to get her ready for her racing days. She is handling the education very well, and will then head to Robbie Griffiths to train,” Gleeson said.

The Wregg’s have had a long association and friendship with Robbie Griffiths.

“We have known Robbie since he was an apprentice and rode for my late brother who was an owner/trainer. We go back a long way, and it’s so nice to share this journey with him.”

“It was a great pay day, as it’s very expensive racing horses, so when you get the stake money and a VOBIS bonus – it really is a bonus!”

“Sometimes prizemoney just covers costs, and having bred thoroughbreds in my own right, I always nominated my horses for VOBIS. Even if they were not champions, being modestly bred, they could still earn enough to pay their way with the bonus scheme. It helps everyone to be an owner and breeder,” Wregg said.

“He has been such a special horse to us, as last year was annus horribilis for our family, filled with dramas and loss. This horse has helped kept everyone together and gave us some hope and joy, as we cheered on his wins.”

“It’s been a wonderful long-term investment, as we bought into Flourishing 10 years ago, so it is very nice to finally receive some good rewards – and now we can hope that there may be something nice for him in the Autumn.

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