Emirates Park Victoria’s shuttle sire Artie Schiller (USA) has the unique distinction of being the only stallion represented by more than one runner in this tomorrow’s $3.5 million Golden Slipper Stakes field.

And in Flying Artie and Good Standing, the proven Group 1 racehorse and sire undoubtedly has two very live hopes of claiming Australia’s breed-shaping, juvenile event.

Currently quoted by tab.com.au at $5.00 and $13.00 respectively in a quality renewal that attracted 17 final acceptors, Flying Artie and Good Standing only have to repeat their most recent performances to be right in the finish of the world’s richest 2-year-old event.

The Mick Price trained Flying Artie was universally regarded as the unluckiest contestant of this year’s Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes field when finishing a courageous runner-up after a distinctly checkered passage.

While the James Cummings trained Good Standing earned his shot at this year’s Golden Slipper with a hugely encouraging Group 3 Skyline Stakes victory at just his second career start.

The consensus of opinion is that this quality brace of colts should be even better suited by the typical nature of the Golden Slipper and each has received added assistance with favourable barrier draws.

Flying Artie and Good Standing have been responsible for Artie Schiller assuming a top-five position on the current 2-year-old sires standings. Significantly, this has come about with only nine members of the Emirates Park stallion’s biggest-ever (109) local foal crop having faced the starter.

The quality duo has also helped reaffirm Artie Schiller as a proven source of top-end 2-year-old runners.

The stallion’s 2011 foal crop in the northern hemisphere featured both We Miss Artie and My Conquestadory, respective winners of the Keeneland Breeders’ Futurity (Gr.1) and Keeneland Alcibiades S. (Gr.1) in the United States.

In addition to Flying Artie and Good Standing racing for their share of the $3.5 million worth of prizemoney on offer in this year’s Golden Slipper, Artie Schiller also has a further two runners competing in the $280,000 VOBIS Gold Rush (1000m) at Bendigo tomorrow.

If Not Now When and Lebombo Rose go in to the valuable contest previously unraced, though the former does so as the comfortable winner of her only trial to date. At 9.00 and 25.00 respectively in the tab.com.au market, they are both given some chance.

It is a watershed year for Victorian breeding with this year’s running of the Group 1 Golden Slipper over 1200 metres at Rosehill tomorrow.

Five Victorian bred or sired two-year-olds will take their place, which is up from 3 in 2015 and just 2 in 2014.

Visiting Victorian trainer Brent Stanley believes his stakes winning, Victorian bred filly Sweet Sherry will race well above her odds in one of the world’s biggest races for juveniles

The Swettenham Stud graduate is one of the outsiders for the $3.5 million event but Stanley believes there are several factors in her favour at Rosehill.

“She’s rock-hard fit for the Golden Slipper and it’s the first time she’s drawn a barrier,” Stanley said.

“Her trackwork has been top-shelf and there’s been genuine improvement since the Blue Diamond.”

Sweet Sherry, a daughter of Eliza Park International’s Bel Esprit, was a $260,000 buy from Swettenham’s draft at last year’s Inglis Melbourne Premier yearling sale.

The filly is a half sister to dual Group 2 winning Arinosa (by Dash for Cash) as well as the Hawkes trained, city winning Onerous (who is aiming for his first stakes win in the Abell Stakes at Moonee Valley tonight).

Swettenham recently sold another sibling by Dash for Cash at the Inglis Premier Sale for $150,000 to Chris Walller and Arinosa’s owners the Puglisi family.

“She’s big and built like a colt,” the Sutton Grange based trainer Stanely added.

“She’s the first horse I bought for (client) Steve Gillard and has shown ability from the outset.”

The Bel Esprit filly looked every bit the professional winning the Listed Maribyrnong Trial Stakes (1000m) in a field of first-starters at Flemington in October.

The likes of Sepoy, Danzero and Canny Lad have all completed the Maribyrnong Trial – Golden Slipper double.

Sweet Sherry threw a shoe second-up at Moonee Valley and was last seen doing her best work at the finish of the G1 Blue Diamond.

“She drew an outside gate at Caulfield and was shuffled wide on the corner although, to be fair, Extreme Choice was a dominant winner,” Stanley admitted.

“But some good horses have been beaten in the Golden Slipper and I’ve said from Day 1 my filly can make it to the top.”

Victoria’s Woodside Park Stud has this morning announced it has acquired an interest in one of the most exciting and possibly best pedigreed 2yo colts in Australia – Nikitas, the Snitzel half-brother to the Ciaron Maher trained VRC Oaks winning filly Jameka.

Trained in Queensland by Kelso Wood, Nikitas burst onto the scene as an early 2yo on the 5th of Dec 2015 winning a $72,000 race on debut at Doomben by an impressive 5 lengths, making him look a real contender for the Magic Millions 2yo Classic.

His second start was in the Group 3 Bruce McLachlan at the GCTC where he ran a credible third to Zelady’s Night Out and Slumber Party en route to the $2 million feature.

On Magic Millions day, Nikitas was backed into second favourite behind super colt Capitalist (by Written Tycoon). Nikitas didn’t disappoint his supporters in turning the tables on his Queensland rivals, defeating all but Capitalist who was just too slick for him over 1200m.

“We were obviously cheering on Capitalist in the Magic Millions Classic as he is by our great stallion Written Tycoon, but we had our eyes fixed on Nikitas as well, as we saw his impressive debut at Doomben and looked up his pedigree back then and said wow!” said Woodside Park Stud’s Matt Tillett.

Kelso Wood explained before the Magic Millions Classic that Nikitas would ideally be suited by more distance than the 1200m but his raw talent encouraged him to run in the feature race.

“I am very excited about this horse,” Wood said.

“I believe he has the same kind of ability (former Group 1 winner) Sizzling did. But Sizzling was a horse we had a lot of issues with. This fellow is pretty bombproof.”

Like Wood’s other star 2yo colt by Snizel, Sizzling, the grand final this season for Nikitas will be the 1600m Group 1 JJ Atkins at Eagle Farm on June 11.

Nikitas is the third foal from the well related General Nediym mare Mine Game and was bred by one of Australia’s leading nurseries in Rick Jamieson’s Gilgai Farm.

“Mine Game was a Melbourne city winner herself and has hopefully produced two superstars from her first three foals, but like many of Gilgai’s mares, she comes from a huge black-type international family further back”, Tillett added.

“The original owners of Nikitas are an impressive group of three very successful horse owners and businesspeople so we are delighted they have welcomed us to join them in racing such an exciting prospect”.

We can expect to see Nikitas on similar 2yo and 3yo campaigns to young stallion prospects like Press Statement, Brazen Beau and Woodside’s own Zoustar in the coming months.

The Group Two Champagne Classic over 1200m at Doomben on May 14 followed by the Group Two QTC Sires Produce over 1350m also at Doomben on May 28 are likely targets, before his first Group One assignment in the JJ Atkins (The TJ Smith) over 1600m at Eagle Farm on June 11th.

For further information on Nikitas and Woodside Park Stud contact Matt Tillett on 0423 074 249 or matt@woodsideparkstud.com.au

Adelaide Magic Millions Day 1

 The sale started on Monday evening, March 14th and continues on Tuesday and Wednesdaywith 21 Victorian vendors taking part.
168 VOBIS nominated yearlings are catalogued for the Magic Millions Adelaide Yearling Sale .
Top 10 selling VOBIS nominated lots on Day 1 have been:

MMS Adel 2016 Day 1 VOBIS Top 10


 Victorian bred winners & grinners!

  • The Mildura Cup was won yet again by trainer Darren Weir and Dean Yendall, this time with Gingerboy, a son of former Blue Gum Farm sire Elvstroem. They day before at Oakbank, another son of Elvstroem, Crystal Icon, saluted. He was bred by J A & J M Anderson.
  • Artie Schiller (standing at Emirates Park Victoria) looks set to have two very handy two year olds in the Group 1 Golden Slipper in Good Standing and Flying Artie. In country NSW, he has another nice 2yo in the form of the filly Artova. Trained out of Port Macquarie, she has won 3 of her 4 starts.
  • Thames Court, a 3yo filly bred, trained and part-owned by Mornington trainer David Brideoake scored at Moonee Valley on Monday collecting a handy Super VOBIS bonus.
  • After getting a Group 1 win in Sydney the weekend prior with Le Romain, Darley Victoria’s former shuttle sire Hard Spun got a double at Oakbank including Unspun which was bred in Victoria by Lisa and Tim Johnson’s Ealing Park operation at Euroa.
  • Victorian bred/sired horses had a monopoly on the Magic Millions 2yo Classic races this season (Ballarat, Wyong, Gold Coast, Pinjarra & Launceston) – well until yesterday’s Magic Millions Adelaide. A son of Stryker, Mr Markou, which was bred by Three Bridges, came the closest to overhauling race winner She’s Positive (trained by Victoria’s Tony Noonan) when he finished 3rd.
  • It has been a hugely successful past twelve days for Darley Victoria’s Domesday. Over this period he has had 10 of his progeny win including two stakes winners at Perth and Canberra.
  • Progeny of Blue Gum Farm sire Turffontein have been performing well around Australia. In the 10 days from the 4th of March, he had six winners across Victoria and interstate. This included Finke (bred by Lauriston Thoroughbreds) who scored his 4th consecutive victory in the Northern Territory.
  • Great to see Sydney based trainer Chris Waller has success with a Victorian sired and bred horse in the form of Magicus. By Eliza Park International Victorian sire Statue of Liberty, he has now won three of his four starts. He is a home bred for Tony Torcasio.

Lining up this weekend…

Golden Slipper
As of late Monday, there are likely to be five Victorian bred/sired runners in the Group 1 Golden Slipper being run this Saturday (this compares with three in 2014 and just two in 2015). The likely runners are:
  • Capitalist – by Woodside Park sire Written Tycoon
  • Defcon – bred by Kevin Wacey’s Gleneagles Stud at Yarra Glen
  • Flying Artie – bred by John Shannon and sired by Emirates Park Victoria’s Artie Schiller
  • Good Standing – by Emirates Park Victoria’s Artie Schiller
  • Sweet Sherry – by former Eliza Park International Victorian sire Bel Esprit; raised and prepared at Swettenham Stud.
Bendigo is city racing
The Bendigo Golden Mile race meeting is a metropolitan meeting this Saturday and carries with it no less than $320,000 in VOBIS bonuses and prizemoney only available to VOBIS nominated horses.
A feature race is the $280,000 VOBIS Gold Rush which has 30 entries which include:
  • Artistic Design – the half brother to Trust in a Gust, he is trained by the Freedman brothers and is by Swettenham Stud’s Master of Design.
  • Valliano – Trained at Lindsay Park, he is a son of Equiano and won the lucrative Listed Inglis Premier race at Caulfield last month.
  • Also entered are debutants by sires such as Moshe, Domesday, Equiano, Sharkbite, Reward for Effort, Strategic Maneuver, Floral Pegasus, Artie Schiller, Magnus and Danerich.
Other Group 1 Victorian bred/sired entries this weekend:
George Ryder StakesHucklebuck (bred by Terry Board & by Blue Gum Farm’s former sire Elvstroem); Le Romain (by Darley Victoria’s former shuttle sire Hard Spun)
Ranvet StakesHauraki (by Darley Victoria sire Reset); Le Romain
Galaxy StakesFlamberge (home bred of Contract Racing); Lord of the Sky (bred by Robbie Laing & by Rangal Park sire Danerich); Griante (bred by Mornington trainer David Brideoake); Malaguerra (by Eliza Park International sire Magnus); Miss Promiscuity (a home bred of Rob Crabtree & also by Magnus) and Brook Road (by Greta West sire God’s Own)
Rosehill GuineasJameka (bred by Gilgai Farm); Le Romain; Crosley Hotshot (bred by Glentree Downs Pastoral); Spanish Stride (bred by Julian Sullivan); Charlevoix (bred by Edward Sullivan & by former Darley Victoria shuttle sire New Approach).

The Quarterback created two firsts in the $1.25 million Newmarket Hcp (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday.

He became the first Group 1 winner for Cranbourne trainer Robbie Griffiths in his twenty-five year training career.

And he was the first Australian-bred Group 1 winner for Darley’s Victorian shuttle sire Street Boss.

The Quarterback saddles up for Newmarket win

The Quarterback saddles up for Newmarket win

Notably it was a second Newmarket winner bred by Nagambie Gilgai Farm having won the time-honoured sprint with the legendary Black Caviar in 2011.

The Quarterback (5g Street Boss – Soorena by Encosta De Lago) tracked the favourite Chautauqua before angling to the outside fence to defeat Black Heart Bart by a head in the Newmarket.

“Winning a Group 1 at headquarters in the best sprint race in Australia is just amazing,” Griffiths said.

Makybe sold The Quarterback for $120,000 as agent for Gilgai Farm at the 2012 Inglis Melbourne Premier yearling sale.

Griffiths prepares him for a syndicate that includes Hayden Allen, John Armstrong , Sunil Dhupelia, Shane Doyle, Ross Dunwoody, Richard Gudykunst, Tim Ivers, Oliver Kysela, Aaron Lamshed, Deane Lester, Paul Miall, Craig Pearce, John Schuijers and Austin Miller.

“I trained his grand dam Suraya and she was a metropolitan winner. He’s an August foal and was a smashing looking colt at the yearling sales,” Griffiths recalled.

Griffiths also has Hussor in his stable, the two-year-old out of Soorena who is by Husson.

The Quarterback’s older half-brother Philippi (Host) won the Group 2 Tulloch Stakes and ran 2nd in the Group 1 Australian Derby before the gelding was transferred to Hong Kong. He has now won more than $1.4 million in prizemoney between the two jurisdictions.

“Of this year’s dozen foal crop (at Gilgai), the two stars are the half-brother to The Quarterback and the half-sister to Jameka. Both will be offered for sale in 2017,” Jamieson tweeted on the weekend.

Jamieson also part-owns Saturday’s Group 2 Phar Lap Stakes winner Hattori Hanzo (Sebring) with Peter Anastasiou, Ken Biddick and trainer Mick Kent.

Meanwhile, Street Boss has another Group 1 winner in waiting in the USA. His unbeaten filly Cathryn Sophia is quoted at $13 in pre-post markets for the Kentucky Oaks on May 6.

Rough Justice topped the VOBIS horses leaderboard last year and he has banked another huge winning bonus in the $100,000 VOBIS Gold Eldorado (1300m) at Wangaratta.

The Contract Racing home bred gelding was the first ever winner sired by Eliza Park International stallion Wanted with a breakthrough at Terang in April 2014 and he has now won 6 times in 20 starts with earnings over $450,000. Almost $190,000 of this has come from VOBIS Gold Premier race prizemoney or Super VOBIS bonuses.

He started a $2.20 favourite on Thursday (originally the race was to be run on Wangaratta Cup Day on the Sunday prior but was postponed due to the race meeting being abandoned) and didn’t let punters down with a half-head victory over front-runner Kirani (by Dash For Cash).

Rough Justice stalked the pace before letting down and asserting his class in the VOBIS Gold Eldorado.

“The race wasn’t run to suit. The leader had an easy time up front but the way he finished off was terrific.,” co-trainer Simon Zahra said.

“We hadn’t tried him past 1200m before, but he’s been relaxing well in his work and we were confident he would get the 1300m. Damian (Lane) gave him a really good ride and he deserved another win.”

Rough Justice (3g Wanted – Hard Rider by Maroof) is a half-brother to stakes winners Utah Saints (God’s Own), Big Chill (Artie Schiller) and Hard Stride (Hard Spun).

A Contract Racing homebred, he is raced by David and Jenny Moodie in partnership with Nick and Gayle Psaltis.

They bought his NZ bred dam Hard Rider for $45,000 in 2007. She has a yearling filly by Street Cry and is back in foal to Zoffany.

The Group 3 TBV Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes for two-year-old fillies was run on Super Saturday at Flemington and won by the Gai Waterhouse trained Thyme for Roses.

She beat home Lauriston Thoroughbreds bred Emphatically which is trained by Ciaron Maher.

It was a fitting win considering the efforts Gai Waterhouse has gone to in inspecting and buying Victorian bred yearlings in recent months.

The winner is a Redoute’s Choice filly owned by the USA’s Jon & Sarah Kelly who in recent years have started buying out of Australian yearling sales rings.

Thyme for Roses in the mounting yard pre-race

Thyme for Roses in the mounting yard pre-race

Thyme For Roses’ Group 3 win added significant value to her impressive pedigree and will certainly be added to in future races considering the ease of her victory.

Jockey Ben Melham said the daughter of Redoute’s Choice out of Magic Millions 2YO Classic winner Augusta Proud had taken plenty of benefit out of her fifth place finish at Flemington a week earlier.

“She had a solid hit-out the other day where I felt she probably just went a bit quick in herself. With the benefit of that run under her belt and out to 1200m today, I rated her a little bit slower and she travelled well for me and really appreciated this ground.”

Adrian Bott (Waterhouse stable) accepts Thoroughbreeders Stakes trophy from TBV President James O'Brien

Adrian Bott (Waterhouse stable) accepts Thoroughbreeders Stakes trophy from TBV President James O’Brien

Waterhouse’s Racing Manager Adrian Bott said Thyme For Roses would now likely head back to Sydney and target Stakes races over the Championships.

“She’s shown a lot of ability right from the outset and it’s very pleasing to see her top it off with a result like this today,” Bott said.

“We brought her down here with the initial intentions of running in the Blue Diamond but unfortunately she struggled the first time around the Caulfield track and didn’t have any luck there.

“You saw last week it was a very game effort down the straight for the first time and up to the 1200 today she was too strong for them.”

Tried And Tired has notched his second stakes win for former Chatswood Stud sire Niello and prominent Victorian breeder Richard Pietrykowski at Flemington.

The Listed My Kitchen Rules Stakes (1400m) was also a consolation of sorts for Team Corstens who lost the Group 1 Australian Cup in the stewards’ room on Saturday.

“The decision earlier today (in the Australian Cup) was disappointing,” Leon Corstens said.

“But we knew Tried And Tired would be out there trying his heart out. He’s been ultra-consistent and really deserved today’s win.”

Tried And Tired (6g Niello – Yawn by Redoute’s Choice) has earned over $465,000 after making just $1,700 as a foal from the Chatswood Stud draft at the 2010 Inglis Great Southern Sale.

He won a Swan Hill maiden in July 2013 and broke through at black-type level in the 2014 Christmas Stakes at Sandown.

Pietrykowski and Chatswood Stud owner Greg Willis teamed up for a Group 3 win earlier this year with Niello mare Nautical in the Bow Mistress Trophy (1200m) at Elwick.

The breeder doubled up for the weekend when Crusoe (by Grey Swallow) won on Cup Day at Stony Creek. He is trained by Cranbourne’s Nikki Burke.

Tried and Tired’s sire Niello (Octagonal) died prematurely at Chatswood Stud in 2011. A younger brother to Lonhro, he won the Spring Champion Stakes, Canterbury Guineas & Rosehill Guineas.

Victorian owner-breeders John and Helen McPhee claimed a feature country double on the weekend with their home-breds Toolangi (Towong Cup) and Baby Jack (Corowa Cup).

The Brian Cox trained gallopers were both ridden by Jake Duffy and won on either side of the border for the McPhee family’s Jacka Investments carrying the black & pink checked colours.

“Brian was confident Toolangi could come through based on his work,” Duffy said on Saturday.

“I didn’t want to let him go too early and there was still plenty left into the straight.”

Toolangi is a son of former Blue Gum Farm sire Umatilla and Bluebird mare Blue Juno. His dam is related to Champion Hong Kong Sprinter Sacred Kingdom who was sired by Encosta de Lago when he initially stood at Blue Gum.

Blue Juno died a week after foaling Toolangi in September 2009 and Umatilla passed away at Blue Gum two years later aged 23.

Baby Jack came from the tail of the field to defeat stablemate Bringenbrong in the Corowa Cup on Sunday. He was held up on the fence before finding room and storming to the line.

“It only seemed a matter of time before they stopped,” Duffy said.
“They fanned on the corner and I was on the best horse in the race.”

The McPhees bred Baby Jack by using Half Hennessy over Good Stuff (Marwina). The mare was a difficult breeder – the Corowa Cup winner was her only foal in five seasons at stud.

Super Cash has continued Written Tycoon’s sensational season in stakes races with a hard-fought victory in the Listed Moomba Plate (1100m) at Flemington.

The Andrew Noblet trained filly is the 15th stakes winner by Woodside Park’s in-form stallion and his fifth this year following Shakespearean Lass (Listed W J Adams Stakes), Hot Dipped (Listed Gold Sovereign Stakes), Howmuchdoyouloveme (Listed Takeover Target Stakes) and of course star two-year-old Capitalist which among other wins scored the $2 million Magic Millions Classic in January.

Super Cash was coming off a Group 3 placing in the MVRC Typhoon Tracy Stakes and the addition of blinkers made all the difference at headquarters on Saturday.

“We were going to put them on last time in but we kept bumping her up in distance and I was reluctant to do that,” Noblet said. “The key is to keep her to short, sharp trips.”

Noblet will now send Super Cash for a stakes race interstate.

“That’s the obvious move. She just tries her heart out and is a very genuine filly. We will see how she pulls up and then assess whether to go to Adelaide or Sydney.”

Super Cash is a homebred for Steve Millar and Peter Robinson and they have her 2yo brother Fast Tycoon in work with Lindsay Park trainers David Hayes and Tom Dabernig. Their dam Super Bucks (Dash For Cash) was bred back to Written Tycoon last year.

Written Tycoon is on the cusp of a career milestone with Capitalist running in the Group 1 Golden Slipper this Saturday. Trainer Peter Snowden remains confident the star colt will be fit and ready for the Golden Slipper despite losing his unbeaten record in the Group 2 Todman Stakes.

Written Tycoon had a total of five winners in races around Australia over the weekend including a treble at Mildura on its Cup Day. He is the winning-est sire around Australia in the past month with 27 winners placing him second on the Australian Sires Premiership (by winners) with 96 for the season.

The 2016 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale provided record results across the board and Victorian sires were right at the forefront of proceedings with none more so than Chatswood Stud’s Blue Diamond hero Reward for Effort, who returned an average price of nearly nine times his 2013 service fee.

A blue-blooded son of Exceed and Excel, who is closely related to Golden Slipper winner Overreach, Reward for Effort has been a firm favourite with breeders since retiring to stud in 2011.

With his oldest progeny now three year-olds, Reward for Effort is the leading Victorian based second season sire by earnings and winners and is third on the overall Australian Second Season Sires List to only Hinchinbrook and Beneteau.

He has sired 29 winners including in South Africa and Singapore and his best progeny are headed by Group 3 winners Gold Symphony and Take Pride along with the $250,000 Inglis Banner RL winner Dalradian.

Yearling buyers have been quick to recognize his growing success with 14 of his stock averaging $97,500 at the Inglis Premier Yearling Sale highlighted by a show-stopping colt from Batik that made $380,000 for Supreme Thoroughbreds when secured by China Horse Club with James Harron Bloodstock the under-bidder.

He was the most profitable of all Victorian based sires represented at the sale in terms of multiple of service fee and his colt from Batik was the fourth highest priced of the sale and single highest priced offering by a Victorian based sire.

The first two crops of yearlings by Reward for Effort both averaged a tick over $30,000 across all sales while this year his 31 sold to date are averaging $70,877, so the marketplace is clearly impressed with what Reward for Effort has to offer.

His stock are being sought out by some of the best judges in the business with purchasers this year including Aquanita Racing/ Champion Thoroughbreds, Astute Bloodstock, Dermot Farrington Bloodstock, Peter Moody, Wylie Dalziel Racing, Boomer Bloodstock, John Foote Bloodstock, Wexford Stables, etc.

In recognition of his growing profile, Reward for Effort covered 209 mares last spring and in a game where numbers often mean everything, he is a young stallion with a huge opportunity to excel going forward.

Strawberry Baby took no prisoners while posting her second stakes win on Saturday for Spendthrift Australia’s shuttler Warrior’s Reward (USA).

The free-wheeling filly broke well and never looked back in the Big Easy Stakes (1100m) at Fair Grounds in New Orleans. She laid down a 46.09s fraction for the first 800m and then lengthened in the straight to score an authoritative victory.

“She has speed so I just let her run. She never gave up and just kept fighting on,” jockey Colby Hernandez said.

Strawberry Baby is in the record books as part of an historic hat-trick for Warrior’s Reward on Friday May 30, 2014. It was a milestone date for the Spendthrift Farm shuttler who is a Group 1 winning son of Medaglia d’Oro.

His first three winners as a sire – Liatris (Pimlico), Unbridled Reward (Churchill Downs) and Strawberry Baby (Lone Star Park) – all saluted on that same day.

Strawberry Baby (4f Warrior’s Reward – Kendall Hill by Theatrical) has now won 5 times in 9 starts and that includes an initial black-type victory in the Prairie Gold Lassie Stakes. She is owned by Brad & Judy Miller and is out of an unraced half-sister to multiple stakes winner Denim Yenem.

Brandywine Farm’s Jim and Pam Robinson bred Strawberry Baby and the Kentucky couple are long-time supporters of Spendthrift. They have booked in close to 100 mares to their stallions this year.

Spendthrift’s incentive programs are a no-brainer according to Pam Robinson. “Share the Upside makes sense,” she said. “You share upfront supporting the horse and if he’s a hit, you get to share that success.”

British-bred Baciami Piccola has a Group 1 summer campaign in sight after winning the Group 3 Florida Oaks (1700m) at Tampa Bay Downs.

The progressive daughter of Swettenham Stud shuttler Equiano (Fr) was having her first start in the USA and her first start past 1200m on Saturday.

“We’ve been working quite a bit and I like her,” jockey Julien Leparoux said. “She can be temperamental but we get along.

“She broke good and I took her back to save ground. I knew she was going to kick and close strong. There were questions before the race because this was her first time going that far but she competed and has some guts.”
Baciami Piccola (3f Equiano – Lucky Legs by Danehill Dancer) is the 7th stakes winner by Equiano (in just two crops) and she had won on debut in Italy and was also runner-up in the Listed Prix des Reves d’Or in France before shipping Stateside last year.

“She came over in August and was a little slow to get adjusted to the way we do things,” trainer Brian Lynch recalled. “To get the distance today shows she has an abundance of talent.”

Lynch will give Baciami Piccola another start at Keeneland in April and her main goal is the $1 million G1 Belmont Oaks Invitational (2000m) on turf on July 9.

Agent Marco Bozzi originally bought her for 33,000 euros at the 2014 Arqana October yearling sale and she later changed hands privately to brothers John and Jerry Amerman.

Baciami Piccola is the first foal of Windsor winner Lucky Legs and she has a 2yo sister by Equiano that was retained by her breeders after being passed-in at last year’s Arqana August yearling sale.
From just a handful of runners in the USA, Equiano has also sired last year’s Santa Anita stakes winner Belvoir Bay and Group 3 Commonwealth Oaks runner-up Lola Beaux.

Closer to home, Equiano has classy youngster Valliano ready to target VOBIS and Inglis bonus races in the next month. He won the $250,000 Inglis Premier at Caulfield last month before an unplaced effort in the G1 Blue Diamond.

Lindsay Park trainers David Hayes and Tom Dabernig will nominate Valliano for the $250,000 VOBIS Gold Rush at Bendigo next Saturday and $100,000 Inglis VOBIS Gold Plate at Cranbourne on April 1.

Premier Sale titbits

Congratulations to the staff of Blue Gum Farm on winning the Tab.com.au Best Presented Draft at the recent Inglis Premier Yearling Sale. It obviously helped life the prices!

Victorian first crop sires represented at Premier Sale Session 1 performed very well:

  • Eliza Park International’s Squamosa scored an average of $120,000.
  • Swettenham Stud’s Americain had 17 yearlings sell for an average of $65,000 and a 94% clearance rate.

A few of the Session 1 leaders:

  • Victorian sire (by average, minimum 3 sold): Wanted (Eliza Park International) – $116,667
  • Victorian vendor (by average, minimum 3 sold): Gilgai Farm – $183,889 – followed by Ampulla Lodge and Blue Gum Farm.
  • Pinhook title: Three Bridges for Lot 339 (Teofilo- Serious Rock). Bought for $32,000 from Hillside Thoroughbreds; sold for $340,000 at Premier Yearling Sale. Profit of $308,000.

Every year, Inglis and the Herald Sun run a terrific ‘Win a Share in a Racehorse’ competition with the winner receiving 10% in a yearling bought at the Premier Sale. This year, Inglis chose Caulfield trainer Ciaron Maher to select the yearling. He chose Lot 623 from Supreme Thoroughbreds to train, a filly by Reward for Effort out of Miss Outstanding. Good luck to the winning part-owner Tom Allen of Oak Park!

Victorian sired yearlings provided great results for vendors in terms of profitability at the Inglis Premier Sale:

Victorian sires dominated Session II at the Premier Sale as can be seen from the table below with all but one of the Top 10 sires by average based in Victoria:

Victorian bred stakes winners galore!

Did you know? Victorian bred/sired horses won 11 Australian/New Zealand stakes races last weekend including 2 Group 1 wins by Rangipo (by Three Bridges sire Stryker) and Le Romain (by former Darley Victoria shuttle sire Hard Spun).

Here are a few more:

  • Laceby Lodge (near Wangaratta) bred Flemington winner Miss Seton Sands (by former Victorian sire Gonski) who has returned to Australia after black type wins and a Group 1 placing in New Zealand.
  • Congratulation to Devon Park Stud on breeding and owning Red Bomber who narrowly beat another star Victorian bred in Burning Front at Flemington in a Group 3 race on the weekend! Both horses have won lucrative VOBIS Gold Premier races in their careers.
  • Malaguerra (by Eliza Park International’s Magnus) is being set for the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap following his Listed Bob Hoysted Handicap win at Flemington.
  • The Victorian bred Defcon, trained by the Snowdens in Sydney, won the Group 3 Black Opal Stakes at Canberra impressively, shooting him up the market for the Golden Slipper. He was bred by Kevin Wacey’s Gleneagles Stud in the Yarra Valley.
  • Hillside Thoroughbreds only have their first crop of racehorses out on the track now, but they already have two impressive winners in Whispering Brook, winner of the Listed Supremacy Stakes at Perth on the weekend, and Areti, an impressive winner at Moonee Valley this year.

Victorian breeders enjoy success around the tracks

  • Bullarook Park’s sire Strategic Maneuver has had a few decent winners of late including Lotza Focus at Stawell and Precision Strike at Hawkesbury while the James Cummings trained Tempt Me Not is being aimed at black-type wins in Sydney this Autumn.
  • Blue Gum sire Turffontein has hit a purple patch recently with 4 wins in 6 days including Elzette at Mount Gambier, Lyuba at Donald, Dance With Fontein at Kyneton and Boogie Woogie Man at Colac,
  • TBV Life member Joan Walker has got a very nice homebred in the form of the Michael Kent trained Amadeus. Unbeaten after two runs, he is now being aimed at the Listed Bendigo Guineas on Saturday week. Joan and her family are perhaps best known for their ownership of Reckless. Amadeus is related to Reckless through his fourth dam.
  • In what could be the last maiden winner for his sire, Knight Esprit won at Wangaratta on Sunday for breeder/owner/trainer Richard Freyer. He is by former Ealing Park sire Kingston Rule, best known as the winner of the 1990 Melbourne Cup, who died in 2011.

Victorians rack up overseas wins

There were plenty of Victorian bred/sired winners internationally over the past week:

  • At Hong Kong, wins to Victor Emperor (by former Swettenham Stud sire Kaphero) & Tonyboy (bred by Gilgai Farm), Lightning Pegasus (by Wyndholm Park sire Floral Pegasus) and Country Melody (by Woodside Park sire Written Tycoon).
  • Special mention to Sha Tin winner Energetic Class, a horse bred in Victoria and sired by Damian White Bloodstock’s sire Globetrotter (son of Street Cry). It was a maiden win for the gelding afteronly beginning his career mid last year in Hong Kong.
  • In Singapore Victorian bred Mighty Kenny, a son of former Eliza Park sire Shinzig, saluted.
  • While in Dubai, the Tony & Keliie Smeaton bred, Hong Kong trained Gun Pit was a gallant runner up in the Group 1 Al Maktoum Challenge on Saturday. He has now secured a place in the Group 1 Golden Shaheen on Dubai World Cup night with champion jockey Joao Moreira to ride him.
  • As well as the Group 1 New Zealand Derby win by Victorian bred Rangipo (by Three Bridges sire Stryker), there was a win on the Ellerslie race card in the Group 3 ARC Darley Plate by Sacred Star. He was bred in Victoria by Michael Ruff’s Bulla Thoroughbreds. The dam Irish Nova is now resident at Rosemont Stud.
  • Supreme Thoroughbreds graduate, Townsings Lane bred, 2 year old Mygirldownunder won in South Africa. Supreme sold another one to South Africa at this year’s Premier Sale in the form of a Reward for Effort yearling.

Upcoming Victorian bred stakes runners

  • The field is out for the annual Group 3 TBV Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes for 2yo fillies at Flemington this Saturday and it includes three VOBIS nominated horses: Emphatically (bred by Lauriston Thoroughbreds), Soviet Secret (Emirates Park) & Sister Sylvia (Glen Eden, Kilmore).
  • An interesting runner in Saturday’s Group 2 Sires Produce Stakes at Flemington is Tasmania’s best two-year-old, the unbeaten Hot Dipped, Trained by Brendan McShane, he is by Victoria’s leading sire Written Tycoon.
  • There are four Victorian bred/sired among the favourites for the upcoming Group 1 Golden Slipper including Capitalist (by Written Tycoon), Flying Artie (Artie Schiller), Defcon (bred by Yarra Glen’s Gleneagles Stud) & Good Standing (Artie Schiller). Power Trip (Hard Spun) & Sweet Sherry (Bel Esprit, bred by Swettenham Stud), are also strong chances of getting into the field.

For the first time, Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria hired a cameraman and editor to develop a series of videos focused on the Inglis Premier Yearling Sale of 2016.

The videos covered pre-sale previews through to action in the sale ring and post purchase reaction. We also went behind the scenes and captured the duties of those who work at the sales such as the bid spotter, the sale photographer and the yearling handler.

These videos are part of TBV’s strong commitment to continually promoting Victorian bred horses, their breeders, owners and vendors.

The videos were expertly produced by Tim Patterson and his team at Digital Media Creations and distributed via social media during inspections week and on sale days.

Below are a few examples of the video work produced. You can find the full collection on TBV’s Youtube channel.

Pre-sale previews by TBV President James O’Brien and Simon Vivian from Inglis:

Some thoughts by Victorian vendors in the week leading up to the sale including Colleen Bamford (Daisy Hill) and Mark Lindsay (Eliza Park International):

Behind the scenes at 2016 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale with yearling handler Chris Kent (Blue Gum), bid spotter Steph Grentell (Inglis) & photographer Bruno Cannatelli:

And finally, the post sale reaction by Victorian vendors and buyers of Victorian bred horses including Greg Willis (Chatswood), Troy Corstens (Malua Corstens) & Eric Pipersberg (Next Level Bloodstock) and Cathy Hains (Burnewang North):




Sometimes the best stories of a yearling sale aren’t the sale toppers, the stunning types or the super pedigree pages.

This is the heartwarming account of yearling Roger and his handler.

The story of Roger or lot 339 (Teofilo-Serious Rock) at this year’s Inglis Premier Yearling Sale is one of great human emotion, devotion and, ultimately, love for a young horse.

TBV captured the moment Roger was knocked down by Inglis auctioneer Jonathan D’Arcy. We followed him and his Three Bridges’ handler Karen Sinclair as they paraded out of the ring and proudly strode back to Barn G.

And then, once Roger was back in his box and head in the feed bin, we experienced Karen’s Three Bridges colleagues emotionally embrace and congratulate her (including a bear hug from the boss).

See for yourself this heartwarming story of Roger as told by Karen…

Video was produced by Tim Patterson & team at www.digitalmediacreations.com.au

The story of Roger

Roger was bred by Nagambie’s Hillside Thoroughbreds and stud manager Peter Ford remembers him very well.

“They struggled to get him out of his dam (Serious Rock) and in the end four of his ribs were broken.

“He was sent to the vet at Scone immediately. Following examination, the vet advised he was a fifty-fifty chance of living”

“He got through it thankfully with his ribs repaired with little plates.”

Roger, as he was first named by Hillside, got through this initial trauma and grew up into what Peter described as a “beautiful walking colt”.

“You make your decisions” as Peter puts it philosophically when he describes the decision to sell Roger at the weanling sales.

The young Teofilo colt made $32,000 at the 2015 Inglis Great Southern Weanling Sale bought by bloodstock agent Paul Willetts for Three Bridges Thoroughbreds.

At the Eddington property of Three Bridges, Roger became a farm favourite.

Yearling Manager, Karen Sinclair grew a particular connection with the horse. She had seen him at the weanling sale originally and thought he really stood out.

At the farm he became known for his laid back attitude.

“He eats lots and snores!” Karen commented.

“He’s just the most gorgeous horse really. Everyone’s favourite. Dependable Roger.

“I bought a share in him because I loved him so much. Paul (Willetts) and Toby (Liston) said I should basically, for once, put my ‘balls on the plate’!”

Last week at the Inglis Premier Sale, he surprised everyone with his sale price. With a moderate reserve placed on him by Three Bridges there was not super-high expectations.

But the bidding kept going and going and going for Roger in the auction ring finishing with the hammer coming down at $340,000 to the bid of New Zealand’s Wexford Stables.

It was a much unexpected result for Three Bridges’ Liston family and their yearling manager Karen. And it certainly brought a few tears of joy to the eyes of Karen and her colleagues.

Roger’s breeder Peter Ford could have considered him the one that got away, but instead he was thrilled.

“I went to school with (Three Bridges’) Peter Liston and with Pauline Liston’s brothers and I am really thrilled for them.”

The next chapter in this story of course is the one where Roger gets to the race track where, just maybe, he might become a champion, a snoring dependable champion at that.

Eagle-eyed racing observers might have noticed Group 1 Australian Guineas winner Palentino (by Teofilo) is signed up to Victoria’s lucrative Super VOBIS and VOBIS Gold programs.

While this is true, Victorian breeders can’t lay too much claim to this latest Group 1 winner out of Darren Weir’s stable.

The nomination was actually gained through Category B of Super VOBIS, that is, Palentino’s dam Palatine Hill was bred back to a Victorian sire in the same season he was born.

Palatine Hill actually resides at Jenny and Geoff Watson’s Macleay Thoroughbreds Stud at Westwood in Northern Tasmania and has done for some years.

In 2012, the Watsons welcomed a Teofilo colt out of Palatine Hill. With the assistance of Romsey’s (former) Yallambee Stud, they then walked the mare on to Nagambie’s Swettenham Stud to visit its young sire Master of Design.

The 2013 foal, by Master of Design, was sold at the 2015 Tasmanian Magic Millions Yearling Sale to Longford trainer Bill Ryan.

Now named Bella Francesca, the filly (pictured recently) has just finished her first training preparation and her trainer thinks she has some promise.

“None of the family has performed much as two-year-olds,” Bill said.

“But the filly has run up quite nicely in her first preparation.

“She is a lovely, big filly and is quite striking.

“This family needs plenty of time to mature, but I might get her to the races as a late two-year-old.”

Bill commented that he also really liked Palentino as a yearling, but having sold for $85,000 back in 2014, the colt was well out of his price range.

For Bill’s sake and for the advantage of Swettenham Stud’s Master of Design and Victorian breeding generally, it would be fantastic to see the filly perform even half as well as her older half brother.

Hoofnote: The name Bella Francesca comes from the dam being named after a hill in Rome, Italy and also that Francesca Cumani has Italian breeding. An older sibling is actually named Cumani.

Session 1 of the 2016 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale concluded with a record aggregate and average at Oaklands just outside of Melbourne.

Turnover was up 16% to $51.39 million and the average rose 14% to $111,000. The overall clearance rate also climbed 5 points to 87%.

In the past 5 years, the sale average of Session 1 at Inglis Premier has lifted an extraordinary 54.8%.

At this year’s sale 32 horses were sold for in excess of $250,000, a significant increase on the 18 in 2015, demonstrating the growing demand for top quality colts and fillies at Victoria’s principal yearling sale.

The Premier Sale was particularly a triumph for Victorian vendors who monopolised the Top 10 leader-board.

  • $700,000 C Snitzel – Beauty World Blue Gum Farm
  • $675,000 F Fastnet Rock – Hidden Energy Swettenham Stud
  • $460,000 F Fastnet Rock – Port Augusta Blue Gum Farm
  • $380,000 C Reward for Effort – Batik Supreme Thoroughbreds
  • $375,000 C Street Cry – Original Choice Blue Gum Farm
  • $340,000 C Snitzel – Miss Iguacu Glentree Thoroughbreds
  • $340,000 C Teofilo – Serious Rock Three Bridges Thoroughbreds
  • $340,000 C Sebring – Viking Turf Belle Blue Gum Farm
  • $320,000 C Shamardal – Port Providence Rosemont Stud
  • $320,000 C Smart Missile – Rain Shadow Ampulla Lodge

Blue Gum’s Snitzel – Beauty World colt was secured for $700,000, making him the second-highest priced yearling to be sold at a sale in Victoria. A half-brother to four stakes winners, he was signed for by international bloodstock agent Justin Bahen on behalf of his Hong Kong client Mr Hung.

“We viewed him half a dozen times and knew he was the colt we wanted,” said Bahen.

“He was full of energy throughout the sale and had a consistent attitude. We spent enough time to make sure he was the right horse for us.”

Blue Gum Farm became the first vendor in Melbourne Premier history to record turnover exceeding $4 million. Earlier on Tuesday, Blue Gum’s Sebring – Viking Turf Belle colt was purchased by Tony McEvoy for $340,000.

“We are delighted to achieve such great results for the clients and the farm,” said Blue Gum owner Philip Campbell.

“Our two top colts today were both outstanding animals with great presence, and we’re confident they’ll get the best chance with their buyers.”

Chatswood Stud champion Reward For Effort recorded the second-highest price on Day 3 with a $380,000 colt from Batik. Sold through Supreme Thoroughbreds, he is a half-brother to LR Maribyrnong Trial Stakes winner Mihalic and was purchased by China Horse Club.

“The overwhelming results from Session 1 are representative of the confidence in the Victorian industry, and in the Premier Sale,” said Inglis Victorian Manager Simon Vivian.

“The jump in average of 14% proves that the results are there for breeders and vendors who support the sale with high-quality horses.”

The Inglis Melbourne Premier yearling sale continued its record-breaking momentum on Wednesday when Session 2 average rocketed 43% to $45,701.

The 147 lots on offer at Oaklands grossed $6.71 million and the clearance rate rose 7 points to 88%.

New Premier II records were paid for the top priced colt and filly smashing the old marks set in 2011.

More than half of the Top 20 priced lots in Session 2 were by Victorian sires including Written Tycoon, Turffontein, Street Boss, Americain, Reward for Effort and Artie Schiller.

The Teofilo – Alynya colt (Lot 708) from Yarran Thoroughbreds topped the Session 2 leaderboard after Caulfield trainer Ciaron Maher beat Paul Moroney with a bid of $220,000.

The colt was bred by Neville Murdoch’s Larneuk Stud.

“He’s a lovely athletic horse and really uses himself,” said Maher.

“There’s been strong competitive buying and the results are a good sign for Victorian racing and breeding.”

A daughter of Written Tycoon out of She’s A Knockout (Lot 672) set a new benchmark for Premier II fillies when selling for $130,000.

Owner-breeder Justin Lovatt consigned the filly through Hollylodge Thoroughbreds.

The filly has received a multitude of pedigree updates since the catalogue was printed through her sibling Burning Front (by Primus). Trained by Darren Weir, he has won VOBIS Gold Premier Series races at Pakenham and Moonee Valley as well as the G3 Carlyon Cup.

Next Level Bloodstock’s Eric Pipersberg secured the filly and she will be trained by Team Corstens.

“I was impressed by the physical attributes of the filly. She’s a beautiful mover and filled my eye,” Pipersberg said.

“Burning Front beat Leon’s smart galloper Del Prado at Caulfield and that really resonated with me. Written Tycoon is hot right now so I don’t think we will have any trouble syndicating the filly.”

Competition from local, national and international buyers was fierce during the fourth and final day of Inglis Premier. A total of 41 lots sold for $60,000 or more against just 12 last year.

Premier II has truly come of age and it now occupies a significant position within the Australasian sales calendar,” Inglis Victorian Manager Simon Vivian said

“Vendors and buyers recognised the value of the products on offer, and we are delighted to have been able to match these expectations and facilitate four wonderful days of trade.”

In a stunning weekend on the track for Victorian sired and bred horses, it was perhaps in New Zealand that the greatest success was found.

Three Bridges foundation stallion Stryker kicked a Group 1 goal when his exciting three year-old Rangipo scored a typically hard-fought victory in the Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m) on Saturday.

A serial thriller who never wins by much, Rangipo saved his best for last when he closed out a remarkable campaign with a thrilling victory in the NZ classic at Ellerslie.

Along the way, he had been successful in the G2 Great Northern, Waikato and Avondale Guineas in addition to a Group 1 placing in the Levin Classic.

Rangipo (3g Stryker – Holloway by Zabeel) credited jockey Vinnie Colgan with his sixth NZ Derby.

“I had to use him a bit early but once we got a position he switched off and travelled well. He came off the bridle on the turn and then showed his determination to just keep going.” Colgan said.

The Tony Pike trained gelding has won 7 times in 12 starts and $684,570 for prominent owner-breeders John and Margaret Thompson.

His dam Holloway won at Te Awamutu and is a half-sister to Maze (G2 Awapuni Cup), Barlinnie (LR Sunshine Coast Cup) and Penitentiary (LR Geelong Classic).

Stryker’s oldest progeny are three year-olds and also include the stakes performers Strykum, Miss Nymeria, She Is Stryking and Miss Loren as well as metro winners such as Labdien, Metier, Andrioli and Mr Markou.

Three Bridges Thoroughbreds sold 19 yearlings at Melbourne Premier for turnover of $2.04 million. Their top-priced lot was a cracking Teofilo colt from Serious Rock (Fastnet Rock) that made $340,000 to the bid of New Zealander Lance O’Sullivan.

Stryker has five entries for the upcoming Adelaide Magic Millions yearling sale.