Western District based Michael Niall passed away recently bringing to an end a remarkable chapter in thoroughbred breeding.
Michael and his brother Donard (who passed away in 2015) were renowned beef and sheep producers at their Coleraine property Parkwood, while also maintaining a love for breeding and racing horses.
Swettenham Stud has prepared their remaining breeding stock for sale at the Inglis August Thoroughbred Sale this Friday, 25th of August.
The Nialls bred their first winner, Miasma, in 1950 after sending a mare up the road to stallion Meadow Mist, which stood at former Victoria Racing Club Chairman, Sir Chester Manifold’s property at Camperdown.
But it was some North American breeding transactions by the Nialls earlier this century which are of great interest.
The Niall brothers purchased several broodmares during a trip to Kentucky in the mid-1990s.
In 2009, they sent two of these broodmares to the then unheralded Tapit. Dontwaltzme, was a daughter of Afleet Alex that they had bred in the USA while the other was a Jade Hunter mare named Jade Dreamer.
They secured the service at a cost of just US$20,000! That compares with Tapit’s current fee of US$300,000 which has risen off the back of producing 21 Group 1 winners, six champions and five Breeder’s Cup winners among many other successes.
Once safely in foal, the two mares were sent to Australia where Dontwaltzme produced a grey colt and Jade Dreamer foaled down a grey filly. This filly was retained by the Nialls and named La Ballerine. She was covered by Trust In A Gust in 2016 and will be offered through the Swettenham Stud draft at this week’s Inglis August sale.
Among other results in North America, the Nialls bred the top lot at the 2014 Fasig-Tipton Florida select sale of 2-year-olds in training. The Malibu Moon colt out of the unraced Pine Bluff mare Lizzy’s Bluff had been sold as a yearling for US$200,000then sold as a two-year-old for a sale high of US$1.2 million to Coolmore’s Demi O’Byrne.
The passion and stories behind the Nialls’ beautifully bred bloodstock will continue on and no doubt Donard and Michael will be up there, following each foal, weanling and yearling with as much enthusiasm as they did when they were breeding and racing them themselves.
Swettenham Stud is presenting on behalf of the Niall family, the Greendale Trust draft at this Friday’s Inglis August Thoroughbred Sale.
Swettenham’s General Manager, Brian Gorman, believes the international pedigrees on offer will certainly gain the attention of the astute buying bench.
“When Swettenham was consigned the Greendale Estate horses, we decided to complement their draft with a group of lovely young mares we had bred in partnership. Together, we present an attractive selection of quality mares that have been well mated with highly sort-after pedigrees,” Gorman said.
In a rare opportunity for breeders, all 23 lots in the Greendale Trust draft will be offered for sale unreserved.
Greendale Trust draft broodmares (prepared by Swettenham Stud) include:
Lot 54 – Brideshead (Rahy) – in foal to Trust In A Gust
“She is a well put together mare who throws a great type with an impressive international family. Her dam Lizzie’s Bluff produced the $1.2 million colt sold to Coolmore at the 2014 Fasig-Tipton Florida select sale of 2-year-olds in training,” Gorman said.
Lot 55 – Confederate Rose (Shamardal). – in foal to Trust In A Gust
“It’s hard to find a Shamardal mare to buy, let alone one from the Rahy family, they just don’t exist in this part of the world. Beautifully bred, she throws a fantastic type, with her correct, well-balanced Bel Esprit yearling selling at Premier to MBH/Heywood Bloodstock. Her Master of Design filly is also offered for sale as Lot 65. A cracking type, she would have have been the best Master Of Design born at Swettenham last season.”
Lot 56 – La Ballerine (Tapit) – in foal to Trust In A Gust
“A young Tapit mare, with sought-after international bloodlines, full of quality, just a lovely type of filly. This is her first season at stud.”
View the full catalogue for Friday’s Inglis August Thoroughbred Sale.