As he admired a plucky chestnut foal who arrived on October 11, 2010 Justin Lovatt dreamed of good things as all breeders of the thoroughbred do, but never did he imagine just how big a journey this horse would take him on.
Though he had high hopes with the colt’s full brother Apollo Creed having won a juvenile contest at Flemington just a few months before. And he had faith in the stallion Primus, a well related Group 3 winner with whom he had formed an attachment whilst working with him at Chatswood Stud.
Christening his young horse Burning Front, Justin got a group of friends together and put him into work. It was not a flying start with the horse making just an average debut at Donald back in May 2013; seventh of nine.
It took a while for Burning Front to break through for that first win, his maiden coming at start number eight – a 1200m even at Sale in April 2014. But an easy victory it was… and it was all up from there.
Four years later and Burning Front retires as the winner of 19 of his 60 starts with a further 21 placings to his credit. The most successful VOBIS horse of all time amassing over $500,000 in bonus races; winning over $1.4 million in total.
Five times successful at stakes level, Burning Front was seen at his brilliant best taking out the Group 3 Carlyon Stakes on two occasions, the Group 3 R.A Lee Stakes, the Listed Chester Manifold Stakes and the Listed C.S Hayes Memorial Cup.
Group 3 placed on another three occasions, Burning Front was successful on ten different tracks from 1000m to 1600m and will best be remembered for his bold front-running style which could crush the confidence of his opponents!
“We have been on an unbelievable journey with Burning Front and on behalf of his owners myself and my wife Karli would like to thank everyone involved,” Lovatt said as he announced the eight-year-old’s retirement this week, looking forward to spending time with his favourite horse.
“For now, he is in the paddock with is his two-year-old full brother acting as nanny and loving it. He will get all the love and attention he deserves in retirement.”
“There are a couple of younger siblings coming through including his three-quarter brother Autonomous, and his little brother affectionately known as Little B. Both are up at Albury with my father in-law Kev Handley, and Little B will be educated there before he heads off to the big smoke with Tony McEvoy.”
“And excitingly, there is another on the way, with Burning Front’s mum, She’s A Knockout testing positive this week to Sun Stud’s Palentino.”