Kambula Stud’s Toole family, based at Kadina on the Yorke Peninsula in South Australia, has been breeding and selling winners for three generations and the next crop of yearlings will be its 66th consignment at the majors.
Current studmaster David Toole is following in the footsteps of his grandfather Laurie and father Brian while putting a new perspective on keeping pace with Victoria and NSW. “I’m a fiercely proud South Australian,” Toole said while in Melbourne for the spring carnival. “But we’re finding it hard to compete on the national stage.
“The Victorians are very proactive with Super VOBIS and VOBIS Gold. Many of our mares who foaled to Hunter Valley stallions this year were bred back to stallions based in Victoria.”
Toole is taking advantage of the ‘Category B’ rule which broadens the range of foals eligible for Super VOBIS and VOBIS Gold. Essentially, ‘Breedback’ means no matter where a mare was covered last year, that foal is ‘Category B’ eligible as long as the mare is served by a Victorian stallion this year.
Kambula’s decision to buy Victorian and NSW stallion shares was a defining moment in the stud’s history. “It was back in 2007,” Toole remembered. “Blevic had been here 10 years and was winning title after title when we began investing interstate.”
Blevic was a studmaster’s dream covering big books for 16 seasons but at a fee that never went above $6,600. He was bred, part-owned and trained by Colin Hayes for Swettenham Stud’s Robert Sangster and was a Group 1 winner of the VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes and Victoria Derby before Brian Toole took him to Kambula in 1996.
A South Australian Champion first-season sire in 1999-2000, he went on to win 9 premierships propelled by 25 stakes winners. And his overall fertility rate was an amazing 91%.
“Blevic was a legend,” Toole explained. “He was so versatile siring two year olds, older horses, sprinters, milers and middle distance horses.”
The winners are still flowing – his mares Tipperary Lil and Alabama Missile combined for a double at Morphettville last Saturday.
Blevic replaced Gay Gambler (USA) who sired 13 stakes winners with the stand-out being Group 1 mare Ducatoon. Other top horses of that era to emerge from the stud were Favoured (STC Queen Of The Turf), Inner Magic (STC Reisling Slipper), Bianca (Black Opal) and Lady Fontaine (SAJC Oaks).
Kambula’s first bull had been W S Cox Plate winner Chanak. He was very popular with local breeders in the 1950s when Laurie Toole’s interest in stallions developed from a hobby into a full-time operation.
The stud also grew from 250 acres to the modern facility of today covering 1200 acres.
“We sent 22 mares out this year and many of them of them have been covered by Victorian stallions like Written Tycoon, Helmet, Moshe and Unencumbered.
“Five went to Written Tycoon – he’s doing a great job at Woodside Park. I think Moshe might be a smoky at Eliza Park and I like that new horse Unencumbered at Three Bridges.
‘’The Victorian Government should be congratulated for their support of the breeding industry’’ Toole said.