Longwood Thoroughbred Farm, formally Fulman Park, in Longwood East is the next exciting stage for new owners Michael Christian and his wife Siobhan Miller in their breeding and racing journey.
“We purchased the 230-acre property quite by chance, as Siobhan, my brother Brad and his wife Pauline and I were heading up to Lindsay Park one morning last spring to watch Fuhryk’s track work. The GPS took us along Longwood-Ruffy Road, and we noticed that Fulman Park was for sale,” Christian said.
“We, together with Brad and Pauline, had been casually looking for a larger property for a while, and as a coincidence when we drove into Euroa for some lunch, we parked right outside the Elders Real Estate office. We popped in, arranged an inspection, and Longwood Thoroughbred Farm – the new home of Saconi Thoroughbreds was born.”
“We had simply just outgrown our property in Whittlesea, and as we are acquiring more and more horses, we needed extra room. The 36 acres was not sustainable with a growing band of broodmares!”
Christian has focused on building families around key mares, he has raced or purchased including, Runaway Jesse, the dam of six time stakes winner Eloping (winner of $1.23m), dual 2yo stakes winner, Of The Brave and four time stakes runner up, Jesse’s Girl, Alisa Free, the dam of Group 2 winner, Unpretentious, Bella Inez, the dam of Group 2 winner and multiple Group 1 placed, Hallowell Belle and Group 3 winner, Fuddle Dee Duddle, and Group 2 winner Oasis Bloom who has produced the very talented two-year-old Invincible Lotus.
While their dual Group 3 winning mare, Fuhryk is also heading to the paddocks of Longwood this season.
“She has been a great campaigner, and we have had a lot of fun with her. She is telling us in her recent starts that she is ready to be a mum, and we have Zoustar or a similar commercial mating in mind for her.”
Located in the heart of Victoria’s thoroughbred breeding region, between Seymour and Euroa, Christian has retained the long and loyal clients of Fulman Park as well as the management team already in place.
“Kylie Taylor, our Farm Manager, is doing a great job, and has been fully endorsed by all our existing clients for the quality of her horsemanship and service, which gave us a lot of confidence. Shona Guest, also an integral part of the operation, will handle all the administration of the Farm as our Office Manager and local legend, Robert (Curly) Marshall also plays a vital role on the farm.”
While his wife, Siobhan will expertly handle all the Farm’s marketing, social media and communications keeping everyone up to date and informed on the property’s happenings.
A premiership footballer with Collingwood and Chartered Accountant, Christian remains involved with the AFL, along with Sirecam, his multimedia production company.
“I will be in the city as the AFL’s match review officer three days a week during the football season, but on the other days, I will be on the farm working hands-on with the horses.”
“At our Whittlesea property, I looked after all the feeding, handling, educating and weaning (with a bit of help from friend Bill Birch). I love being involved; that’s my passion – being outside with the horses and watching them grow and develop.”
“Owning a horse is one thing but breeding a winner is a whole new level, and there is nothing quite like it. It even gets close to winning a premiership!”
Longwood Thoroughbred Farm will be providing a complete breeding service, including walking out mares to the local studs, weanling, yearling preparation and foaling down. The property also boasts 24 fantastic individual spelling paddocks for racehorses, which gives the property two-revenue streams – spelling and breeding.
Along with the managers in place, local specialist Equine reproductive vet, Stacy McGregor from Seven Creeks Equine will handle all the farms day to day reproductive veterinary work.
“Stacy does a brilliant job and is only a couple of minutes down the road. It’s a real endorsement to the property and staff that she foals down her own mares and her client’s mares here,” Christian said.
A late starter in the world of horses, Christian has slowly increased his interests in the thoroughbred industry.
“I didn’t get into racing until my late twenties and was first involved in a syndicate with only very small shares in a handful of horses. I then raced horses with Gai Waterhouse including TJ Smith Stakes winner, Phoenix Park. But as my interest grew, I went on to complete the two-year NMIT Horse Breeding Diploma. As part of the Diploma I spent time working at Eldon Park with Christoph Bruechert (now Bombora Downs) which was a great experience, learning so much. I’ve also enjoyed a long relationship with my next-door neighbour in Whittlesea, Peter Morgan at Talwood Park. He is an incredible horseman and has been a fantastic mentor to me.”
“My appetite for horses has grown very organically from the beginning, and thanks to good guidance and advice along the way, I have embraced it and developed a real hunger to learn and develop my skills.”
“From buying my first property in Whittlesea that started with one broodmare, to now purchasing this large professional operation, I am now passionately immersed in the thoroughbred breeding and racing industry and loving every minute.”
To find out further information, please contact Michael Christian on 0419 296 523 or email email@example.com