While there were strong results for Victorian sired horses at the recent New Zealand Bloodstock Ready to Run sale of 2YO’s, it was the striking colt by Swettenham Stud’s Toronado who turned the buyer’s heads.
Victorian trainer Richard Laming went to $300,000 for the Victorian-born son of Toronado out of the Stravinsky mare Circus Polka, providing a tidy profit for vendors Adrian Stanley and Hannah Kettlety of Woburn Farm.
Bred by Swettenham Stud’s Adam Sangster, the Cambridge-based couple purchased the half-brother to stakes performer Modoc for $80,000 at the Melbourne Yearling Sale from the Swettenham Stud draft and prepared him at their property, Woburn Farm.
Based on 84 acres of prime Waikato land, between Cambridge and Ohaupo, the specialist equine property features ample safe turnout paddocks all fenced with Equirail, and offers the perfect set up for thoroughbred agistment, breeding, foaling and sales preparations.
Swettenham Stud’s Sam Matthews who headed over to Karaka, was thrilled that another standout Toronado had attracted so much attention from the buying bench.
“We knew he was a nice horse, and we loved him all the way through. Adrian and Hannah did an incredible job preparing him – he was spot on. His breeze up was impressive, and he is an imposing horse, already weighing 575 kilograms early in his sale preparation. He is a ready-made racehorse.”
“We love to see a young, growing stud over there have such success with a Toronado, and we know that if they didn’t get the right price, they were happy to take him home. In fact, they valued him so much, they have stayed in the ownership. He is the first horse that they have retained a share in after they have sold,” Matthews said.
“It was great to have competition in the ring, and two of the underbidders were also from Victoria. The Toronado’s are popular in New Zealand, but the Victorians aren’t letting them go easily – they came over to buy them back.”
“He was a superb horse, strikingly similar to his sire, and his full brother who we own, will be going through Hallmark Stud’s draft with Mark Baker in book one at Karaka in January.”
Circus Polka has also produced a full sister this season, with Mathews commenting that the “filly foal on the ground an absolute belter” and she is already back in foal to Toronado.
“She is just a great producer, fantastic mum and easy to get in foal. Toronado and her are a great match.”
Laming said he was excited by the start the progeny of Toronado commenting that “he’s doing a good job” in in the northern hemisphere, where he has already had five first-crop stakes performers.
“He was a lovely horse, he breezed up well and he has got lots of improvement there,” Laming said.
“He’s still pretty raw and there is a lot to come from him. I’m happy with the price. Some good clients coming in him and Woburn have stayed in as well, so it’s even better. This is the only one we’ve bought this week, but I am happy with the one I’ve got.”
Coupled with his strong fertility, Toronado has had an outstanding season, and the Swettenham team are eagerly awaiting more Toronado’s hitting the track soon.
“The number of breeders and trainers that have either yearlings or two-year-old’s that have now booked their own mares into him due to the type he produces, has allowed him to achieve 160 mares in his fourth year at stud,” Matthews said.
“The leading trainers are identifying him as a top up and coming stallion, with very few slipping through the cracks at any sale. With the amount of buzz around him at the moment, 23 individual winners already in the North, and the best of his Northern progeny still yet to come, and there is plenty to look forward to.”