It is only a little over two years ago since we announced on these pages that Thompson Creek Thoroughbreds, based just outside of Geelong, would be opening its gates to outside clients for full broodmare and foaling services. But just two and half breeding seasons later, Thompson Creek last week delivered their 100th foal.
Thompson Creek, the brain child of the Ballantine and Stroud families, has grown rapidly. Their property, Glentree South, has long been known as quality equine country. Formerly part of Bruce Wilson’s Glentree Thoroughbreds holdings, Glentree South was acquired by its current ownership in late 2017 and since then has enjoyed a renaissance. Firstly as a quality spelling destination for Ciaron Maher Racing and other leading trainers and now more recently as a high quality thoroughbred nursery.
And it is clear the growth has not gone unnoticed. People are becoming more aware of the family’s racing colours – royal blue, yellow sash and red cap – gracing metropolitan tracks while trainers and breeders are benefitting from the family’s attention to detail on the farm.
“Breeding and racing has been in our blood from a young age, but since we bought this farm in 2017 we have taken every day as a learning opportunity. We wanted to create a farm that we are proud of: where our clients have complete trust that everything is being done to prioritise the welfare of the horse, where they can come and visit and enjoy the Surf Coast atmosphere with people who love what they are doing. We bought the farm for its quality soil, plentiful water supply and top shelf fencing. Since then, we have done everything to put the right team around it and build deep relationships with our partners and clients,” said Wes Ballantine.
Based on feedback from those clients and partners, it appears the strategy is working.
Ciaron Maher Racing is one such partner, regularly spelling horses on the property. David Eustace talked of his confidence in the team, “We love working with the Thompson Creek crew. They are knowledgeable yearling buyers, patient owners and when we send horses to the farm, we know they will all be treated as their own. It is a beautiful farm with a strong team. We know the horses will always do well spelling under Derek’s watchful eye.”
On the breeding front, Wes Ballantine highlights the importance of being regionally aligned with the growing Rosemont, “Clearly we have benefitted from Rosemont’s strong growth – we are just down the road and a natural broodmare feeder farm to their growing stallion roster. We have an excellent working relationship with the Rosemont team which is important to us and our clients. But when going into full broodmare and foaling services, we were conscious of needing to cover all Victorian studs – not a week goes by in the season when our float is not on the road to Swettenham, Darley, Woodside or Widden. We are also grateful for the support from the Hunter’s big studs with Arrowfield, Coolmore and others sending horses to reside with us. It is a terrific community and one which we are proud to be apart. ”
Ryan McEvoy, Rosemont’s General Manager, Bloodstock reiterated the strong relationship, ““We have a lot of mares walking on from Thompson Creek. They are just down the road, are a terrific team to work with and anyone who goes there can see right away what a lovely farm for mares and foals it is.”
But maybe it is the support from local breeders that Wes Ballantine is most proud, “We have been humbled by the relationship that has developed with local breeders. It really strikes you how many good people there are with a real passion for breeding – many with one or two mares. To see them enjoy visiting the property – on the proviso to visit their mare but really to share a glass of wine with Derek and Kaye – has been truly rewarding. Long may it continue.”
To contact Thompson Creek Thoroughbreds about long or short term agistment, including a full range of broodmare and foaling services, go to www.thompsoncreek.com.au