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There was joy at Banstead Manor last week with the birth of a full brother to the world’s best racehorse, Frankel, who is about to commence his first season as a sire.

Unlike Frankel, a bay, the little fellow is a chestnut with quite a prominent white blaze.

His dam, Kind by Danehill, is also a bay; there is a chestnut in the mix going back a couple of generations.

Since acquired by Prince Khalid Abdullah, Banstead Manor has seen extensive refurbishment and rebuilding under stud manager, Simon Mockridge, a few years ago.

Banstead Manor is an historic property in Newmarket, covers 365 acres where Rainbow Quest and Warning were once resident sires.

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Stallion boxes at Banstead Manor


Zizou at Turangga

A few eyebrows were raised when Stuart Ramsay selected Zizou as a sire for his Turangga Stud, at Scone.

Now with just the two crops to race, resulting in two Stakes winners, plus the impressive performance of Everage recently, and with 12 winners to date, the jovial Stuart is not selling out cheaply yet.

Whilst trained by David Hayes, Zizou won just the one race and was placed second five times, had two of those seconds been reversed he would have been much sought after by leading studs.

He ran second to Sleek Chassis in the Blue Diamond Stakes, and second to Forensics in the Golden Slipper Stakes .

Both Zizou and Forensics are from the same family.


Breeding Topics

The Australian Stud Book has released statistics from the 2012 season revealing that Eliza Park had two of the busiest stallions in Victoria last season, in Wanted, covering 180 mares, 7th highest in Australia and Moshe, not far behind with 175mares.

Deputy Keeper of the Stud Book, Jacqueline Stewart, revealed that while figures for the 2012 season are showing a decline compared to 2011, there is still reasons to be upbeat.

To date 20,634 mares have been covered by 622 stallions, a decrease of 8% on last year’s 22,510 coverings.

However, Ms Stewart expects the gap to be narrowed to 5% after, late lodgements and paddock covering reports.

While the breeding industry in Australia has withstood the global economic crisis, more than most countries, and the preceding outbreak of Equine Influenza, which was the beginning of a downward trend in the number of foals produced annually, there is a sufficient number of foals produced each season for racing purposes.

Latest figures show 36 shuttle stallions covered 3,466 mares, or 17% of the 20,634 coverings compared with 4,333, 19%, covered in2011.

441, or 71%, were Australian bred stallions, compared with 67% in 1992 when 2106 stallions covered 29,621 mares.

16 of the top 22 covering stallions were Australian bred, which illustrates the popularity since the pre war era.

There were 65 stallions with more than 100 matings in 2012, compared to 69 in 2011.

46% were covered in NSW, 25% in Vic, (up 1%), 16% in Qld, 9% in WA, 3% S A, and 1% in Tasmania.

Danehill remains a dominant factor with descendants covering 40% of TB mares for 2012, compared to 36% in 2011.

74 sons of Danehill covered 2,204 mares, headed by Fastnet Rock with 208, and the Derby winner, Blackfriars, with 178.

109 grandsons of Danehill covered 5,163 mares, and 7 great grandsons covered 137 mares.


Breeding Topics

Magnus is chipping away nicely, a double at Mornington on Friday last, and another double at Werribee on Sunday, he is getting winners at the right time of the year with the Melbourne Yearling Sales approaching.

His name is firmly attached to the radar screen as he is getting winners at a consistent rate, with quite a few suggesting they will get further distance.

Magnus is currently on top of the second seasons list, runners to winners, with 37 runners for 16 winners, followed by Hard Spun 42—15, Casino Prince 63—14, and Host 26—13, however Host, has the better average of 50 per cent.

Bel Esprit, shunned as a yearling due to a hock problem, made the grade as a racehorse, winning eight races, all at Black Type level.

Now proving an outstanding stud asset, siring 41 winners in 30 days during the month of December.


Foxwedge To Shuttle

Foxwedge, the brilliant Group1 winning son of Fastnet Rock, has arrived at Whistbury Manor Stud, in the U K, to stand a season in the northern hemisphere.

He completed his first season at Newgate Farm where he covered 163 mares, with 138 in foal, which equates to 86 per cent in foal.

Foxwedge has already won the support of commercial breeders, they have accepted him as a viable asset for their mares, an investment to sustain and increase the value in their bloodstock portfolio.

Going in on the ground floor in that first season is sound thinking, his yearlings out of well bred mares are sure to claim a lot of attention.

Foxwedge will be limited to a book of 120 mares while at Whitsbury Manor Stud, situated on the Hamshire – Wiltshire borders at Fordingbridge.

The principle of Whitsbury Manor, Ed Harper, is a great nephew of William Hill, the doyen of English bookmakers, he originally bought the estate in 1943, the same year he purchased Kong, by Baytown, at the December Sales for 710 guineas, she produced Nimbus and his three quarter brother, Grey Sovereign.

Hill was a prominent breeder of commercial yearlings, but he didn’t meet with the same success in his choice of sires.    


Kia 0ra takes a stake in All Too Hard

Kia Ora Stud has joined Vinery in the ownership of All Too Hard, taking a significant share in the colt’s racing and future breeding career.

Kia Ora Stud, located directly across the Pages River from Vinery in the Segenhoe Valley, is one of the most historic farms in the Hunter Valley, and the Australian thoroughbred industry in general.

Established in 1912 by the late Percy Miller, Kia Ora has a long and proud history, it has produced numerous top class thoroughbreds, the only stud that could possibly rival it would be Widden, founded well back in the nineteenth century.

The first sire to stand at Kia Ora was Sarchedon, a grey son of The Tetrarch, he was hardly a good investment, whilst winning five races as a two year old in the U K, he didn’t meet with a lot of success as a sire.

Miller didn’t have immediate success, there were some lean years in the beginning, but that soon changed when he secured Magpie.

He was the foundation stone of Kia Ora, he proved a great sire by Dark Ronald, he had a magnificent female line, he simply couldn’t fail and he didn’t.

Midstream and Delville Wood followed, between them they won eight premierships, much of that success could be attributed to the mating of Magpie mares.

At one stage Miller had 200 mares at Kia Ora, during the war years the number was halved, in 1941 he offered 105 yearlings at the Easter Sales, a record number for any one breeder, the horses travelled by rail from Scone to Central Railway Station in Sydney and were walked from there to the sales complex at Randwick.

In recent years, under the ownership of Ananda Krishnan, Kia Ora has been completely redeveloped and reinvigorated with state of the art facilities, re-established pastures and first class management.

In a relatively short time the Kia Ora operation has continued the tradition of producing strong sound horses, such as champion South African mare Igugu, and leading sire, Exceed And Excel.

“We are delighted Kia Ora have joined us in the ownership of All Too Hard,” said Vinery’s Peter Orton.

“Kia Oro is one of the finest properties we have in the Hunter Valley, with a first class group of broodmares and a commitment to racing,” he said.


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