Trust In A Gust is hot property after completing a Group 1 double in the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes and Toorak Hcp at Caulfield.

And Greta West studmaster Laurie McCarthy is keen to strike while the iron is hot with his sire Keep The Faith.

“Keep The Faith is 14 years-old and there are lots more young ones by him in the pipeline,” McCarthy said.  “I’m happy to discuss mating plans with breeders and to work out a deal for their mares.”

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Keep The Faith

Trust In A Gust has propelled Keep The Faith towards the top of the Victorian premiership ladder with earnings of $913,930.  He’s in third spot behind Bel Esprit ($1.27m) and Written Tycoon ($1.06m).

The Darren Weir trained four year-old will continued his spring preparation in the $200,00 Crystal Mile at Moonee Valley and $1 million Emirates Stakes at Flemington on November 8.

Trust In A Gust is a trail-blazer but Keep The Faith is no one-horse stallion.  He has sired the winners of 24 races this season and that’s only bettered by Bel Esprit (40), Written Tycoon (27) and his Greta West colleague God’s Own (27) on the Victorian winners’ premiership.

Broodmare owners can contact McCarthy for further information on (03) 5727 6243 or 0410 476 196.

Angels Beach completed a winning weekend for Bel Esprit and Eliza Park International owner Ting Kong Cheng in the Apache Cat Classic on Sunday.

The Peter Moody trained mare bolted in by three lengths over Straight Gold (Stratum) and Let’s Rock’n’roll (Fastnet Rock) in the $100,000 feature sprint on Cranbourne Cup day.

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Angels Beach. Image from Racing Victoria. 

“Her pet trip is 1000 metres and she really runs through the line,” winning jockey Luke Nolen said.  “She was up against a quality field and really took them apart.”

Angels Beach (5m Bel Esprit – Descendant by Zeditave) was a barrier rogue in her younger days before putting it all together for a Listed victory in the Manihi Classic (1050m) at Morphettville in March.

Angels Beach was a $220,000 buy for Les Cowell at the 2011 Gold Coast Magic Millions.  She is a half-sister to Sydney stakes winner Patronyme (More Than Ready) and is the last foal of their dam  Descendant who died in October 2012.

Bel Esprit leads the Victorian sires’ premiership with 32 individual winners for prizemoney of $1.27 million.  He has won the last seven Victorian titles and stands at Eliza Park International for a $24,200 (inc gst) service fee.

On Saturday, Order Of The Sun won the Moet Moment Hcp (2000m) at Randwick for Ting Kong Cheng.  The Gai Waterhouse trained gelding led all the way and clocked 2.00.36s to break the long-standing track-record set by Group 1 winner Dignity Dancer in 1998.

Order Of The Sun (4h Encosta De Lago – Sequin by Lure) won the LR Victorian St Leger earlier this year and he will likely back up in the LR City Tattersall’s Club Cup (2400m) at Randwick next Saturday.

There are numerous good-news stories going around with Trust In A Gust.

The Group 1 sprint-miler has banked over $1.10 million for his large contingent of owners led by Ballarat based David and Paul Speechley.

Trust In A Gust gave trainer Darren Weir his first Group 1 in the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) on September 28 and he reprised that performance with another Group 1 in the time-honoured Toorak Hcp (1600m) on Saturday.

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Trust In A Gust. Image from Racing Victoria. 

“What a great horse to train – he’s perfect,” Weir said.  “He’s sound, tough and makes his own luck.

“It’s been a great ride for a lot of people.  All the staff at home and the owners who are a great bunch plus John Foote who picked him out as a yearling.  And he’s been a great advertisement for VOBIS Gold.”

Trust In A Gust (4h Keep The Faith – Subtle Breeze by Storm Cat) was named VOBIS Horse of the Year last season and his emergence as a genuine Group 1 horse has been a ringing endorsement of the Scheme.

The Toorak result completed another superb day’s racing for Swettenham Stud owner Adam Sangster.  He bred and sold the colt for $45,000 at the 2012 Inglis Melbourne Premier yearling sale.  Earlier in the day, Swettenham stallion Host (Chi) had sired Hosting to win the LR Weekend Hussler Stakes.

Trust In A Gust’s sire Keep The Faith is a stakes winning son of Sunday Silence.  He transferred out of Swettenham in 2012 and is now based with Laurie McCarthy at Greta West Stud.

Of The Brave gave Rosemont Stud sire Starspangledbanner the perfect start to his Australian stud career on Saturday.

The Mark Riley trained colt won the LR Debutant Stakes (1000m) with a professional performance on the big stage at Caulfield.

Of The Brave (2c Starspangledbanner – Runaway Jesse by Rory’s Jester) started a $4 favourite and led them up with the advantage of an inside barrier.  He pulled away in the straight for a convincing victory over Miss Idyllic (Exceed And Excel) and Miss Loren (Stryker).

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Of The Brave. Image from Racing Victoria. 

“He’s potentially the best I’ve ever trained,” Riley said.  “He’s just an absolute natural racehorse with the greatest attitude.  He’s a Magic Millions horse but I don’t know whether we will take him up there.”

Of The Brave sold for $170,000 out of the Rosemont draft at the 2014 Gold Coast Magic Millions.  Bred by sporting commentator Michael Christian, he is a younger half-brother to Sydney and Melbourne Group 3 winner Eloping (Choisir).

The first Starspangledbanner two year-olds took Royal Ascot by storm this year with Group 2 winners The Wow Signal (Coventry Stakes) and Anthem Alexander (Queen Mary Stakes).

The Wow Signal followed up with a Group 1 triumph in the Prix Morny at Deauville and he has been given a $26 quote for the 2015 English 2000 Guineas.

Starspangledbanner encountered fertility issues after retiring to Coolmore Stud before transferring to Rosemont.  He covered 51 mares last year with 24 of them subsequently scanned in foal.

Rosemont owner Anthony Mithen has restricted the 8 year-old stallion to 50 mares again this year and he will shuttle back to Coolmore’s Irish headquarters for a northern book in 2015.

Hosting treated Caulfield’s on-pace bias with contempt in the LR Weekend Hussler Stakes (1400m) on Saturday.

The progressive son of Swettenham Stud sire Host (Chi) came from last with a whirlwind finish to nail the front-runners right on the line.  “I was a bit worried and thought Kerrin (McEvoy) had him too far back,” Eurell admitted.  “But the hot pace up front helped and I was very happy with the way he was travelling on the home turn.

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Hosting. Image from Racing Victoria. 

“This horse has always shown ability and he’s overcome a serious leg injury to make his mark today.  He’s right on song now and is certainly bred to get a 1600 metres.”

Hosting is well-catered for at that distance in coming weeks with the G2 Crystal Mile at Moonee Valley on October 25 and G1 Emirates Stakes at Flemington on November 8.

Hosting (5g Host – Kali Smytzer by Zabeel) is from a NZ bred mare who has also foaled the Danewin stakes winners King Diamond (VRC Roy Higgins Hcp) and Elderly Paradise (Macau Derby).

He won on debut at Mornington and returned as an autumn three year-old for black-type placings in the LR Manfred Stakes at Caulfield and G3 C S Hayes Stakes at Flemington.

Resuming as a four year-old, he won at Sandown and Rosehill but his career was put on hold after fracturing a humerus bone at Flemington in April.  “He was taken to the Werribee Vet Clinic and it didn’t look good,” Eurell recalled.  “But the vets assured us he would make a full recovery and they were right!”

Host (Hussonet) has covered over 200 mares combined in his last two books at Swettenham Stud.  He is standing for an $8,800 (inc gst) service fee this year.

Darley Victoria stallion Reset is on course to claim another Cox Plate with Fawkner in a fortnight.

Reset mare Pinker Pinker won the 2011 Cox Plate and Fawkner is the TAB $3.80 favourite for this year’s championship after an authoritative victory the G1 Caulfield Stakes on Saturday.  The grey held off the late charge of Criterion by a long head.

Fawkner (7g Reset – Dane Belltar by Danewin) is raced by Lloyd & Nick Williams and he came of age this time last year winning the G1 Caulfield Cup.  He launched another successful spring campaign with an eye-catching second to Dissident in the G1 Makybe Diva Stakes last month.

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Fawkner. Image from Racing Victoria. 

“He’s beaten the majority of what he’s going to have to beat at Moonee Valley,” Nick Williams said.  “He’s risen from handicaps to weight-for-age company and those sorts of horses are very hard to find.”

Bred by Steve Bennetts, Fawkner is the second foal of G3 winner Dane Belltar who has had four to the races, all winners, including the G2 winner Tanby.  Dane Belltar has a yearling filly by New Approach and has recently foaled a colt by Street Cry.

Reset (Zabeel) was a Group 1 winner of the 2004 Futurity Stakes and Australian Guineas during an unbeaten career for Team Williams.  The sire of 25 stakes winners, he stands at Darley’s Northwood Park in Seymour for a fee of $16,500 (inc gst).

Victorian-bred filly Amicus is one of the most valuable fillies in Australia after her Group 1 victory in Saturday’s Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield.

Amicus was a $500,000 buy at the 2013 Gold Coast Magic Millions from the draft of Tyreel Stud, acting as agent for Makybe breeder Tony Santic.  Trainer Chris Waller said the filly had always shown great ability and he also praised jockey Hugh Bowman at the presentation.

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Amicus. Image from Racing Victoria. 

“It was a gem of a ride – Hugh was the difference,” Waller said.  “He switched her off beautifully and saving that energy was the key.  But it’s a team effort and our Melbourne staff complement the Sydney operation.”

Bookmakers firmed Amicus for the G1 Victorian Oaks but Waller indicated he would not be rushing into making a decision on whether she would press on to Flemington.

“I won a maiden on her in back in the autumn and said to Chris she’s stakes class,” Bowman recalled.  “He was smart enough to bring her down here early for a couple of runs in readiness for today.”

The Fastnet Rock filly is from stakes performed El Moxie mare Gold Chant – a five time winning half sister to Starspangledbanner.  Santic sent the mare back to Fastnet Rock last year and she foaled another filly in August.

Made of Stars scored an amazing win for Bullarook Park stallion Azevedo in Launceston on Wednesday evening.

Jockey Anthony Darmanin described the victory in the Leigh Flaherty City Cars Maiden (1400m) as a phenomenal performance.  The gelding was travelling nicely before he was severely hampered when Marresi dropped back sharply on the home turn.

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Made Of Stars

“My horse was virtually stopped in his tracks – I thought he had no hope of winning,” Darmanin declared.  “But when I got him to the outside, he absolutely flew home and got up in the last stride.

“It was a truly amazing win.  I don’t know how he won because he got absolutely pole-axed.  I can’t remember a bigger run to win here at Mowbray.”

Made of Stars (4g Azevedo – Arabian Dolphin by Dolphin Street) failed to fire before owner Rhonda Hall transferred him to trainer Mark Ganderton in June.  He was placed twice in three starts at Devonport before the breakthrough this week.

“I’m thrilled with that,” Ganderton said.  “He copped so much trouble but that’s what he’s capable of when he does his best.”

Made of Stars is one of three winners for Arabian Dolphin who is an unraced half-sister to Adelaide stakes winner Devil In Disguise.

Azevedo (Helissio) was Group 1 placed in the VRC Lightning Stakes at Flemington before his career was interrupted by a severe colic attack.  He was also beaten a nose by Super Elegant in the G3 Rubiton Stakes at Caulfield.

Bullarook Park owner Malcolm Boyd stands Azevedo for a $2,200 (inc gst) service fee.  He is standing his first season at the Avenel stud alongside Lucas Cranach (Ger) and Strategic Maneuver.

Equiano has been rewarded for a successful flat season in Europe during Book 1 of the Tattersalls October yearling sale at Newmarket.

The Swettenham Stud shuttler had a colt from USA bred mare Fabulously Fast sell for 120,000gns (AUD 230,515) on Wednesday.

The colt was purchased by Adam Sangster’s brother Sam for clients of trainer Brian Meehan.  The Manton based conditioner has prepared two Equiano winners this year – Lightning Stride and Ghost Cat.

“This colt presented as one of the best individuals in the Sale,” Sam Sangster said.  “He’s a real athlete – just like his father – and looks a proper two year-old.”

The colt’s older brother Equally Fast is one of 15 two year-olds winners sired by Equiano so far this year – he broke through at Wolverhampton last month.

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Equiano 

Their dam Fabulously Fast (Deputy Minister) was a Group 1 winner of the Test Stakes at Saratoga and her Red Ransom colt Humungosaur was stakes-placed as a two year-old at Deauville.

Sam Sangster worked alongside Adam at Swettenham Stud in Victoria before being appointed European Sales & Marketing Manager for Sirecam.  “Equiano is doing a wonderful job with his first crop,” he said.  “That was an obvious attraction and the colt we bought is a lovely lad.  I can already see him at Royal Ascot next year.”

Equiano has another 17 yearlings catalogued for Book 2 of the Tattersalls October Sale which begins on Monday.

Among the highlights is a colt from G2 Royal Ascot winner Langs Lash (Lot 1094), a half-sister to Irish stakes winner Minalisa (Lot 1172) and a three-quarter sister to G2 Del Mar Derby runner-up Jairzihno (Lot 1265).

Equiano (Fr) is currently serving his latest southern book for a $16,500 (inc gst) fee at Swettenham Stud.

The Adelaide racing public and race caller Terry McAuliffe reacted favourably when Alcobro maintained his unbeaten record on October 4.

Alcobro (3g Bianconi – Tendue by General Nediym) had won on debut at Mindarie-Halidon last month and punters backed him into a $2.80 favourite for the Chooks Custom Grafix Hcp (1000m) at Morphettville.

Alcobro came from last to score by a half-length prompting McAuliffe declare;  “This is one smart horse!”

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Alcobro 

Trainer Richard Jolly is also keen on his future prospects.  “It was a promising first-up win and I expected him to be competitive at Morphettville even though he was up in class.

“He took the next step on Saturday but is still learning what it’s all about.  It looks like exciting times ahead.”

Jolly also prepares his older brother Alcohol who has won 5 races in Adelaide and Melbourne for over $245,000 in prizemoney.  They are both from speedy mare Tendue, a Red Ruby Final winner at Ballarat in 2004.

Their sire Bianconi (Danzig) is currently covering his first book at Ridgeview Park.  He stands at the Muskerry East stud alongside Dr Doute’s, Golden Snake, Best Choice and Scintillo.

Swettenham Stud stallion Host sired his latest maiden winner at Swan Hill on Monday and his next black-type winner could come as early as this Saturday at Caulfield.

Holy Host (4g Host – She Lago by Encosta De Lago) broke through in the AG Farm Maiden winning by four lengths eased down by Brad Rawiller.  It was his first time stretching out to 1600 metres and made the long trip to Sunraysia worthwhile for Caulfield trainer Luke Oliver.

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Hosting. Second up winner at Rosehill last year

“He has been looking for the mile and won in the style of a horse that won’t be a stranger to the winners stall,” Oliver predicted.  “He’s a strong and athletic and is the first one I’ve trained by Host who is really hitting his straps.”

Oliver also prepared his winning half-brother Greystone (Dash For Cash).  Their dam She Lago won at Flemington and Sandown for part-owners Tom Molnar and Peter Walsh and they are both in a much larger syndicate that races Holy Host.

Hosting (5g Host – Kali Smytzer by Zabeel) is overdue to bank a black-type win and he’s right in the mix for the LR Weekend Hussler Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield this Saturday.

He was a stylish first-up winner at Sandown last month and does have winning form second-up at Rosehill.  He was also placed second-up over 1400 metres in the G3 C S Hayes Stakes at Flemington last year.

Trainer Greg Eurell and his staff worked hard to get Hosting back to the track after the gelding cracked a femur which kept him sidelined for six months.  ”The vets assured us he would make a good recovery and they were right,” Eurell said.  “I knew he was fit enough to run a bold race at Sandown and he overhauled the front-runners with a strong finish.”

Hosting would be a fitting winner this Saturday for owners John Hampton, Patsy Harrison, Graham & Marjorie Olive, Nick & Michael Tozer, Kevin Williams and Graeme Yeomans.  His sire Host and Weekend Hussler are both sons of champion sire Hussonet.

Host (Chi) is standing for an $8,800 (inc gst) service fee at Swettenham Stud.

Royal Schilling collected $14,000 of a $20,000 VOBIS Gold owners incentive on top of the winning prizemoney at Echuca on Tuesday.

The Shea Eden trained mare was facing the starter for just the third time to win the Ecotecture Design Plate (1400m) following unplaced runs at Mildura (August) and Kyneton (September).

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Royal Schilling

“She’s been through the wars this girl, injuries and immaturity have held her back but I kept telling the owners to be patient,” Eden said.  “There’s more to come from her and as long as she stays sound, she will race her way through the grades.”

Royal Schilling (4m Artie Schiller – Duchesse De Berri by Diesis) sat on the back of the speed and took over with ease rounding the home turn.  She cleared out for a soft two-length win from Trois Belle and Iberia who are also VOBIS Gold eligible four year-olds.

“She still wanted to look around and do a bit wrong in the straight,” Eden added.  “That gives us great scope for further improvement as her career goes on.”

Royal Schilling was the first yearling Eden purchased from Three Bridges Thoroughbreds when she graduated from the 2012 Inglis Melbourne Premier for $80,000.  Her dam Duchesse De Berri died in June – she also foaled G3 Coongy Hcp winner Fire In The Night.

Eden trains the Echuca winner for James Abel, Doug & Ann Gniel, Michael Habgood, Heath & Harley Kolac, Dale Thomas, Roger Timms and Ron Witney.

Reward For Effort returned outstanding figures with his first-crop colts at The Star Inglis 2YO Sale in Sydney on Tuesday.

The Chatswood Stud stallion averaged $80,833 which was only bettered by Snitzel and Exceed And Excel for sires with three or more lots knocked down at Newmarket’s Ready 2 Race Sale

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C – Reward For Effort x Belsoeur

Topping the list was the colt from Belsoeur (Royal Academy) that made $105,000 to the bid of Triple Crown Syndications.  His dam is a three-quarter sister to Black Caviar.

Triple Crown founders Chris and Michael Ward are good judges – their recent buys include the recent Group winners Charlie Boy, Hot Snitzel and Peggy Jean.

The Reward For Effort – Belsoeur colt was very impressive when breezing 200 metres in 10.80s at Cranbourne.

The other Reward For Effort 2YOs to change hands will eventually head off-shore.  The Maid in Secret colt ($82,500) was purchased by a Hong Kong buyer and the Addicted to Wealth colt ($55,000) is destined for Singapore.

Reward For Effort came close to earning black-type with his first-ever starter when Results finished fourth in the LR Maribyrnong Trial Stakes at Flemington on Saturday.  The Bendigo based filly jumped awkwardly and stewards reported she was inconvenienced at start and half-way down the straight.

Sportingbet installed Reward For Effort as a $4 second-favourite to claim the Australian first-season winners’ premiership for 2014-15.  Star Witness heads the market at $3.

Reward For Effort (Exceed and Excel) was a Group 1 winner of the 2009 Blue Diamond Stakes and he stands at Chatswood Stud for an $11,000 (inc gst) service fee.

Few could have foreseen just how accurate a race name was given to the $250,000 VOBIS Gold Rush (1000m).

The much anticipated opening leg of the two-year-old VOBIS Gold race series is quickly earning a reputation as one of the state’s most pre-eminent juvenile races having already produced a rush of Group 1 performers in its brief two-year history.

Inaugural winner Iconic has continued his winning ways since taking out the Bendigo dash-for-cash, franking his VOBIS victory with an exciting win in the Listed Carlyon Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley last August. The Tony McEvoy-trained youngster was most impressive defeating proven black-type sprinters Villa Verde, Shamal Wind, and Angelic Light, who would go on to become the first horse to defeat Lankan Rupee in the 2014-15 racing season.

However one of the most exciting graduates of the 2013 VOBIS Gold Rush would emerge from outside of the winners stall.

Darren Weir’s subsequent Group 1 Sir Rupert Clark Charity Cup (1600m) winner Trust In A Gust secured his first VOBIS Gold bonus on debut in the 2013 Gold Rush before commencing his well publicised VOBIS Gold spree.

The bargain-basement son of Keep The Faith has proven much more than a VOBIS banner-horse of late and will again command considerable market attention in this Saturday’s Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield in what will be just his second appearance at the highest level.

Trust In A Gust is set to face-off against another VOBIS Gold Rush graduate come this weekend’s $400,000 feature-mile, with the Matthew Ellerton-trained Solicit another likely acceptor.

Though she could only manage a seventh placing on debut in the Gold Rush, Solicit has since emerged as one of the state’s most promising young mares thanks to her hard fought Group 2 Kewney Stakes (1400m) victory at Flemington last autumn.

The dashing daughter of Street Cry has proven herself adept at distances up to 2500m having placed as a three-year-old in the Group 1 VRC Crown Oaks and will again be tough to catch in this weekend’s Toorak Handicap.

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Iconic, winning the 2013 VOBIS Gold Rush at Bendigo

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Trust In A Gust

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Solicit 

Solicit is not the only Ellerton-Zahra trained youngster to emerge from the 2013 VOBIS Gold Rush, with subsequent Listed Regal Roller Stakes (1200m) winner Hard Stride already making a name for herself over sprinting journeys. The dashing Street Sense mare has come on well since sharing second place with Trust In A Gust on debut; her two length defeat of multiple Group 1 winner Moment Of Change in the Regal Roller Stakes marking her arrival on the big stage.

The list of group-level graduates goes on and on.

2013 Group 2 Edward Manifold Stakes (1610m) winner Se Sauver finished a close-up fifth in what was the mare’s second race start, while dual metropolitan winners Churchill Dancer (sixth) and Kievann (12th) have also gone on to again find the winners stall in town.

To date the 2013 VOBIS Gold Rush has produced one Group 1 winner, four other black-type winners and a further three black-type placegetters from its field of 15.

It just proves that there is still a bevy of gold to come out of Bendigo, especially of the equine variety.

Article by Daniel Miles – @DanielMiles90 at Racing Victoria

There are numerous stories of the good fortune enjoyed by breeders that have bought wisely from Darley reductions and Rosemont Stud is the latest to benefit with Singspiel mare Swansea.

Rosemont owner Anthony Mithen bought Swansea (Ire) from Darley for $55,000 at the Magic Millions National Sale in June and that proved a master-stroke when her colt Sweynesse came out and won on debut at Rosehill in August.

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Sweynesse

The Lonhro three year-olds added Group 3 victories in the Spring Stakes (1600m) at Newcastle and Gloaming Stakes (1800m) at Rosehill in September.

Swansea won three minor races up to 2400 metres in Darley’s colours when trained by the late Guy Walter.  Since changing hands, she has since produced a very nice Commands filly at Waikato Stud in NZ.

“We do a bit with Mark Chittick and have a couple of mares over there with him,” Mithen said.  “We sent Swansea to Ocean Park.  She will go to Savabeel next year – the Zabeel – Singspiel cross is working not only with Sweynesse but Eclair Big Bang as well.”

Sweynesse has been installed a $1.90 favourite by the TAB for the Spring Champion Stakes at Randwick and Swansea’s value will sky-rocket if he claims the classic this Saturday, October 11.

Big Bane Theory led home a Group 2 quinella for Emirates Park sire Artie Schiller at Santa Anita on Saturday.

The Carla Gaines trained stallion launched a perfectly- timed move to capture the $200,000 City of Hope Stakes (1600m), getting the jump on deep closer Mr. Commons to prevail by over a length.

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Big Bane Theory

The victory serves as a logical course-and-distance stepping stone to the Breeders’ Cup Mile.  “He’s such an easy horse to train,” Gaines said.  “Joe (Talamo) rode him beautifully.  He saved ground and the leaders were always going to come back to him.”

Bane Theory (5h Artie Schiller – Shebane by Alysheba) is a homebred for Scott Gross and Mark Devereaux and was coming off a first-up placing in a stakes race at Del Mar in August.

Bred in California, he won a Santa Anita maiden and allowance as a late season three year-old and returned to win another allowance at Santa Anita last year prior to a solid fourth in the Citation Hcp in November.

His dam Shebane was a Listed winner of the 1999 Prix Joubert at Longchamp and she has also foaled Aqueduct’s Count Fleet stakes winner Laus Deo (Medaglia d’Oro).

Artie Schiller (El Prado) stands for a $22,000 (inc gst) service fee at Emirates Park’s Victorian base at Digger’s Rest.  His Victorian bred stakes winners include Laser Hawk, Mezeray Miss, Lady Melksham, Big Chill, Secret Liaison and Moving Money.

Blue Gum Farm resident Turffontein sired his first stakes winner in the G2 VRC Edward Manifold Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.

His filly Fontein Ruby defied running down to score by a head from late closer Maastricht and her stablemate Crafty.  “She could back-up in the G1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) next week,” trainer Robert Smerdon said.   “She has the right constitution to do it.”

Fontein Ruby (3f Turffontein – Charming Ruby by Rubiton) was a $50,000 buy from the Blue Gum draft at the 2013 Inglis Melbourne Premier yearling sale.  “It’s an even year of fillies,” Smerdon added.  “When they’re fit and well you’ve got to take the initiative.”

Smerdon indicated Fontein Ruby and Crafty (Manhattan Rain) both have the G1 VRC Oaks (2500m) as their grand finals this spring.  The Aquanita trainer completed the Manifold Stakes – VRC Oaks double with Mosheen two years ago.

Winning jockey Mark Zahra said he wanted to be positive aboard Fontein Ruby.  “Going to the front probably won us the race,” he said.  “She relaxed well in the lead and then gave a kick to fight them off.”

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Turffontein, 2014 Blue Gum Farm stallion parade

Fontein Ruby had shown ability as a two year-old for previous trainer Tony Vasil.  She had been placed on debut at Caulfield on Boxing Day and in the $250,000 Inglis Premier at Mornington in February.

After transferring to Smerdon, she won at Sandown in July and then doubled up at Flemington at the start of this season.  Her dam Charming Ruby has a 2yo filly named Eloquent Ruby (Turffontein) and a yearling filly by Master Of Design.

The mare is an unraced half-sister to G2 Tristarc Stakes winner Infinite Grace.  Second dam Infinite Charm (Tristino) is a half-sister to dual G1 Cox Plate winner Fields Of Omagh.

Turffontein (Johannesburg) stands for a $7,700 (inc gst) fee at Blue Gum Farm.  He was a Group 1 winner of the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield and William Reid Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley.

This year’s edition of the Goffs Orby Yearling Sale once again saw the first crop of World Champion Miler Canford Cliffs in huge demand. Over the two days of this year’s Orby Sale 17 members of Canford Cliffs first crop were sold at an average of €99,176 (AUS$143,321). Eight of them made over €100,000.

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C – Canford Cliffs x Lulawin. 

Just as impressive as the prices was the list of purchasers of these yearlings which included BBA Ireland, M V Magnier (2), Dermot Weld, David Wachman, David Redvers, etc.

The highlight of the sale for Canford Cliffs was the spirited bidding duel that took place on lot 340 (pictured), a bay colt out of Lulawin, that was eventually knocked down to M V Magnier for €200,000. Lulawin is a young half-sister to the Joint Champion 3YO Miler in Europe in 2007 and St James’s Palace Stakes (Gr1) winner, Excellent Art. This colt was M V’s second Canford Cliffs purchase at the sale having parted with €160,000 for another colt on day one.

A five time Group One winning Miler, Canford Cliffs is standing his third season here at Blue Gum Farm at a fee of $13,750.  Great libido, great fertility, fantastic prospect!

Hoofnote:  Blue Gum Farm’s new sire War received a significant update to his pedigree when promising filly Fenway won her maiden at Bendigo on Thursday.

Fenway (High Chaparral) is a younger half-sister to War and she was an eye-catching debut winner for trainers Lee and Shannon Hope.  Connections have nominated her for the G1 VRC Oaks at Flemington on November 6.