Results over the past week in the sales ring and on the race track have once again demonstrated the strength of Northwood Farm to the global Darley operation.
Situated just north of Seymour ain the famed Goulburn Valley, Northwood has been in the hands of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum’s international breeding business since 2006.
On Saturday, the Victorian farm chalked up yet another stakes win with Godolphin’s Allergic saluting in the Listed McKell Cup at Royal Randwick.
He follows in the footsteps of many other Darley stakes winning graduates coming through the farm including the likes of Sepoy and Long John.
But it is the future the Darley team is looking to at Northwood rather than reflecting heavily on past success.
The Magic Millions National Weanling Sale was a solid indicator of that future with the Northwood based superstar colt turned sire, Brazen Beau, delivering some explosive results.
Brazen Beau’s weanling progeny lead – by quite some way – the First Season Sires table by average prices. His foals were snapped up at an average of $201,250. The next best was Dissident with an average of $103,700.
A major buyer was Victorian newcomer Hilldene which bought a Brazen Beau colt for $270,000 on Day 1 of the sale and followed up on Day 2 buying another colt for $300,000. Their home over coming months will be a mere ten minutes down the road from Northwood at Hilldene’s property west of Seymour.
Henry Plumptre, Darley Australia’s Managing Director, said Northwood Farm was a very significant component of the Darley operation.
“Northwood is considered a signature property for our business,” Plumptre said.
“We have invested a lot of resources in Northwood and Sheikh Mohammed doesn’t do that unless he has great regard for the investment.
“You can measure how important we think our Victorian property is by the calibre of stallions we are standing there including Brazen Beau and (newcomer) Frosted.
“Brazen Beau has been throwing bloody good types. With good judges buying his foals, I am also confident they will have incredible temperaments like their sire and his father (I Am Invincible).
“And Frosted, a son of Tapit, is a stallion whose pedigree may have more familiarity in the Hunter Valley but our view was he needs to be standalone as a feature sire at Northwood.
“We are very confident he will get off the ground with a good book of mares.”
Plumptre said Brazen Beau, Frosted, another new sire in Holler and the other five stallions standing at Northwood will play a key part in the ongoing success of the Godolphin Australia racing operation in coming years.
“The next five years are very exciting when you look at the stallions standing at Northwood and the quality young horse the farm produces.”