ATBC down south June Bus Trip
Annual Stud Tour - Bus Trippers treated to Thoroughbred royalty in Southern Districts
How lucky were the 17 participants of this year’s Australian Thoroughbred Breeders Club Annual June Bus Trip? Sure were – missing any Covid-19 lockdowns, and having spectacular weather and great company.
Add to this travelling through gorgeous and healthy lush countryside, viewing handsome stallions, attending enjoyable country racing, making new and rekindling friendships, and with some lively conversations, all resulted in a perfect recipe for a sensational tour.
Leaving the Hawkesbury racecourse at dawn, in our 60 seater coach, plenty of room to move, took us on a wonderful drive via rolling undulating countryside with breath-taking views of the Central Western Slopes to the time-honoured breeding property of Newhaven Park, about 45 kilometres south-east of Cowra. Principal John Kelly greeted us and said that it had been raining for three days till about the time our coach drove into its front gate! Newhaven’s three stallions paraded - led by stallion
Stallions inspected included
Champion three-year-old Xtravagant (by GB bred Pentire)
Former Newgate Farm I Am Invincible horse Super One,
And “new boy” Cool Aza Beel. A New Zealand bred son of champion sire Savabeel (which continues the Sir Ivor maleline via his iconic sire son Sir Tristram), Cool Aza Beel was a dual stakes winner (including a Group 1) and was a champion juvenile in his home country.
ONE of our stops during the ATBC’s June bus trip this year was to John and Helen North’s Bowness Stud on the eastern side of Young, at Barwang. We were treated with viewing their prominent main-stay “young buck” D’Argento, a Group 1 winning second seasoned sire by champion So You Think.
They also paraded 19 year-old liver chestnut giant Bon Hoffa, also an Australian bred Group 1 winning horse, however he already possesses a fabulous winner-getting sire record. Recently the stallion added to his excellent sire record when Bon’s A Pearla “knocked-off” the fancied runners when taking the $300,000 MRC Off The Track Community TG Prelude-G2 at Caulfield. A home-bred for Ken King Thoroughbreds, Bon’s A Pearla is raced by the Victorian with a group of happy owners.
Trained by Cranbourne conditioner Kevin Corstens, Bon’s A Pearla has provided the biggest win for her regular jockey Jason Haskiell who has partnered the filly in her four only starts, which included her previous appearance maiden win at Sandown.
By Danzigs son and former Widden Stud shuttler Belong To Me, Bon Hoffa – a stallion which has had service nominations offered via the ATBC’s Stallion Tender Scheme over the time, has spent all his stud life at Bowness.
Bon’s A Pearla becomes the fifth stakes winner by Bon Hoffa, a stallion that has sired almost 200 winners (of over 630 wins) for earnings over $17.4m. from limited opportunities.
Following a yummy stop-off at the celebrated Junee Liquorice and Chocolate Factory, we travelled around the western outskirts of Wagga Wagga to Euberta stopping at Murray Cod Thoroughbreds, where stud principal Noel Penfold, aided by local conditioner Scott Spackman showed off Rocket Tiger, and resident and proven stallion O’Lonhro.
The pair described the “ride of their lives” when their galloper Rocket Tiger (by Fastnet Rock sire Cluster) made the field of 16 – and ran a credible race, in this Dream Ballad year’s $3.5 million ATC Golden Slipper Stakes-G1 at Rosehill. Noel echoed the same sentiments of excellent success with O’Lonhro’s talented racing daughter O’ So Hazy, which won the Southern Districts Country Championship Qualifier and over $300,000 in prizemoney.
Here, we also satisfied our curiosity with a pasture lesson on Canola production.
Next, we cruised into Narrandera for one of its annual mid-year meets, where friendly faces and two sit-down tables awaited us, the Narrandera Race Club conducting its first meet open for public representation since the Covid-19 kafuffles began last year.
Cootamundra was our base for two nights, so we also visited its district’s history laden Twin Hills. Visited on previous bus trips when the property was named Trans Media
Park, Twin Hills is now owned and managed by Olly and Amber Tait.
Our hosts Katelyn Butler and Brad McNamara were proud to show-off Twin Hills’ five Australian bred stallions – the proven Denman, Hallowed Crown, Odyssey Moon, Smart Missile, and first seasoner Peltzer, a dual Sydney Group winner by So You Think.