Chinse businessman Zhang Yuesheng is leaving no stone unturned developing his Australian bloodstock portfolio from his Yulong Farm at Bayles in Victoria.
Zhang’s Yulong Investments sandwiched some notable buys at the Tattersalls July Sale last week between feature wins in Australia and Ireland.
Melbourne based agent Sheamus Mills (an FBAA and also TBV member) purchased 12 fillies and mares for Yulong Investments with a total spend of 840,000gns (AUD 1.51 million) headed by 3yo filly Lake Hamana who cost 210,000gns.
Lake Hamana (Shamardal) was consigned by Godolphin and is from Listed winner Lake Toya (Darshaan). It’s the extended family of classic winners Generous (Caerleon) and Imagine (Sadler’s Wells).
Another buy out of the Godolphin consignment was Next Meeting (Street Cry) for 90,000gns while Australian expat Causeway Lass (Giant’s Causeway) was sold in foal to Darley shuttler Exceed And Excel.
Eleven of the broodmare buys will be covered by UK based super stallions such as Frankel, Golden Horn, Invincible Spirit and Muhaarar at Southern Hemisphere time and then exported to Zhang’s YuLong Farm in Victoria.
They will join a select group of Yulong broodmares already based in Victoria including Extremely (the dam of Blue Diamond Stakes winner Extreme Choice) who they paid $735,000 for at the Inglis Australian Broodmare Sale in May and Singspiel mare Zauberflote bought at the Gold Coast Broodmare Sale for $525,000.
“We wanted access to these stallions in the northern hemisphere,” says Mills
“It just so happened that the Tattersalls catalogue came out and looked pretty handsome for us. It was just the blood we wanted at the time we wanted it. Then Brexit helped us out even more – we suddenly got ten pence more for our dollar.”
Yulong principal Mr Zhang owns a series of assets in China including a coalmine, a wind farm and his own racecourse and has purchased two farms at Bayles nearby to Pakenham including Cheval Park the former property of equine chiropractor Michael Bryant.
“He wants to establish an all-round business, the idea is to make it as sustainable as possible,” says Mills.
“A lot of work has been done on the farm in a fairly short period of time but there’s still plenty more to come. Once he put Scott Williamson, (previously at Edinglassie Stud) in place as farm manager it was full steam ahead.
“He’s looking to have 30 or 40 good-quality mares in Australia. He plans on taking drafts of foals and yearlings to the sales in future years, and he wants to stand a stallion too.
“If he could get to the point where he had a broodmare band being covered by his own stallion, producing yearlings both to sell at auction and for him to race, that would be ideal.”
This coming breeding season some of Yulong’s Bayles based mares will head to the Hunter Valley but a large number will be utilising Victorian sires including Written Tycoon, Street Boss and Helmet.
It was also a particularly successful weekend for Yulong on the race track in both hemispheres.
Mr Zhang’s tough gelding Killarney Kid (Pendragon), trained by Darren Weir, claimed the VRC Country Cup Tour Trophy at Flemington on Saturday. This followed the win of impressive looking colt Yu Long Sheng Hui (Sebring) at Caulfield on July 2 – and who will now be targeted at the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas.
In Ireland, Yulong owned filly Yulong Baobei (Choisir) followed up with a Listed victory in the Tipperary 2YO Stakes (1200m) on Saturday.
“She is exciting and I’m delighted for Zhang Yuesheng who has five two year-olds with me,” trainer Michael Halford said after the three-length victory.
“He knows his horses and we will be patient with her.”