Thursday, October 29, 2009


Bel Esprit is a seriously good stallion and so, it seems, is his colt from Bellotto mare Bellain.
Seriously Good (by Bel Esprit) topped the first session of the Magic Millions Horses in Training Sale at the Gold Coast yesterday, bringing a winning bid of $360,000 from Victorian trainer Peter Morgan.
Bred by Queensland farm, Jonel Park Thoroughbreds and originally sold at this year’s Gold Coast Magic Millions Yearling Sale to Washpool Thoroughbreds, Seriously Good was the talk of the complex.
A delighted Morgan revealed that he was over the moon with his purchase: “He’s a very nice colt … if you believe what they are telling me, he’s a very cheap horse.
“He breezed up nicely and is a great prospect.”
The Kilmore based Morgan added that the colt – who is out of winning half sister to stakes winner Volare and hails from the family of Group One winners Sharpen Up and Rarotonga Treaty - would be racing “sooner rather than later”.
“I will get him home and give him a little break – but then get him into the stables and we might set him for the ($2 million) Magic Millions Classic (in January).”


Some folk have a tendency to get very excited when their horses win, but in over 30 years of watching owners watch races, very few surpass the enthusiasm of leading Tasmanian owner/breeder Alwyn Shaw.
Alwyn, who heads up the massive construction firm, Shaw Contracting, is also the proprietor of Aceland Stud at Whitemore and has a large band of broodmares – incredibly large actually given that he a relative newcomer to the industry.
At least he doesn’t have to worry about paying a service fee for one of his top mares following the victory of Money Angel in the Eliza Park Oaks Trial at Bendigo yesterday (28 October).
Money Angel’s win – assisted by a brilliant front running ride from a very much in-form Craig Williams – saw Alwyn and his wife Judy presented with a service nomination to Champion Victorian Sire, Bel Esprit as a special bonus to winning connections.
Alwyn was very excited following the heart stopping final stages, revealing that he had purchased the Street Cry filly for $40,000 at last year’s Inglis Sydney Classic.
Although it’s unlikely that the filly will contest next week’s VRC Oaks-G1 at Flemington, as this is her first campaign and her fifth run since early September, the connections have high hopes for Money Angel in interstate Oaks next autumn.
‘Ace’ Shaw is one of those larger than life characters and a full profile will appear in the November issue of Eliza Park Insider. Click here to sign up for your free subscription.

Photos courtesy of Slickpix


Congratulations to developer extraordinaire and racing enthusiast, David Kobritz, whose Danroad gelding Steel Road got up in the lucky last at Bendigo yesterday : the somewhat appropriately named McKern Steel Handicap.
Doug Harrison, who trains Steel Road on behalf of Kobritz and a group of other owners, has got the 4YO firing on all cylinders, with the gelding now winning at his last three starts.
David has bred and raced a number of outstanding horses and there are probably only a handful of people out there who can say that they raced both a Golden Slipper (Danzero) and Melbourne Cup (Subzero) winner.
Steel Road is by the Danehill stallion Danroad, whose Sadler’s Wells three quarter brother – Joe Blow – ran unplaced in the Jayco Bendigo Cup earlier in the afternoon.


Fantastic day at Bendigo on 28 October with the staging of the $151,000 Jacyo Bendigo Cup-LR, won by Redoute’s Choice entire, Zupacool.
Trained by John Symons (who guided the career of Bel Esprit) and Sheila Laxon, Zupacool will now tackle the Queen Elizabeth Stakes-G2 at Flemington on 7 November.
Full marks to the Bendigo Jockey Club – Brendan Dreschler and his committee, along with CEO Ian Hart and his team – and it was as close to perfect weather as you’ll ever find on a racecourse.
The crowd thought so too with over 10,000 flocking to the course.
It was a huge plus also to see Gerry Ryan – born and bred in Bendigo – throw his support behind the Cup by sponsoring the event with his company Jayco.
As mentioned on Channel 7 yesterday morning, Gerry “punches above his weight” when it comes to supporting sporting and charitable events and the sponsorship is a huge boon for Bendigo.


Delago Brom has again been thrusting his best hoof forward with two winners in the past three days: Back Chattin’ Miss at Pakenham on Monday (26 October) and L’aubaine at Balakalva on Wednesday (28 October).
Back Chattin’ Miss was recording her second career win over the 1414m journey at Pakenham and has been a model of consistency of late with two wins and two placings from her past five outings.
Trained and part-owned by Kevin Butter, the 4YO from Noalcoholic mare Fantolic was is also owned by Ken Breese, who has enjoyed considerable success with home breds.
Fantolic went winless, but is a half sister to stakes winner of 12 races, Mighty Way and is closely related to multiple stakes winner Official Receiver (10 wins) and the brilliant filly Tickle My (11 wins, including Sunline Stakes-G2) which was also bred and raced by Ken.
Jon O’Connor’s 3YO, L’aubaine recorded his second win on the trot with a last gasp thriller over 1307m at Balaklava and obviously has a considerable slice of ability with two wins and five placings from eight outings. Indeed, his only unplaced effort was a fourth at Morphettville, so his owners can boast cheques from every start.
Bred and part-owned by Simon Macheff, L’aubaine is from the Monde Bleu mare Soeur Blue, winner of four races in South Australia and dam of city winner Bleury Jeuney.
While the Delago Brom double is noteworthy, the Encosta de Lago stallion’s consistency is clearly one of his greatest assets with seven of his eight runners since Saturday either winning or placing.
Indeed, of the 165 Delago Brom runners thus far, 87% have snared cheques for connections.


Respected industry journalist, Brian Russell pens a weekly email column - Australian Thoroughbred - and this week summed up Eliza Park’s headliner God’s Own:

God’s Own, a Redoute’s Choice stallion out of a three-quarter sister-in-blood to Bart Cummings’s Australian Horse of the Year Saintly bred on the Edinglassie stud at Muswellbrook in the Hunter Valley, appears the likely vehicle to provide Lee Fleming’s Eliza Park stud with an aura of greatness.
He was a magnificent young sprinter-1600m performer whose 10 outings included a win in the Caulfield Guineas and a second to Takeover Target in the VRC Lightning Stakes.
Put to good quality books of 142, 204 and 196 (2008), he was trained by Bart Cummings for himself, Dato Tan Chin Nam and S.C. Khaw.

Monday, October 26, 2009


Congratulations to Greg Eurell for his one-two performance with Apache Cat and Mic Mac in the $200,000 Schweppes Stakes-G2 (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Saturday (24 October).
Greg is one of racing’s quiet achievers and a true horseman, having represented Australia at the 1984 Olympics when just 24 years old.
Taking out his trainer’s licence in 1987, Greg’s efforts had gone largely unheralded until the magnificently baldy faced Apache Cat ‘arrived’ on the scene with his Cadbury Guineas-G1 victory in March 2006 (the first of seven Group One wins).
And now he has two genuine stars in his Cranbourne stable with Mic Mac (by Statue of Liberty) winning seven of his first eight starts and earning cheques in all but one of his 11 outings. Following Saturday’s short neck second to Apache Cat, Mic Mac has now won $652,938, while the ‘Cat’ has won $4.6 million from his 19 victories and 11 placings.
Commenting after the race, Greg said it was hard to split the pair and was thrilled to quinella a race of this calibre – a true weight for age spectacular with the beaten brigade including Group One winners Light Fantastic, Duport and Danleigh, plus multiple stakeswinners Bank Robber, Ortensia, Lucky Secret and Falaise.


Exciting Lonhro colt, Dissolved, took another important step toward a future at stud by capturing the $100,000 GPG Inglis Trophy Race (1400m) at Sale on Sunday (25 October).
Eliza Park purchased a share in Dissolved after the colt had caught the eye of champion trainer John Hawkes at last year’s Australian Easter Yearling Sale. Hawkes eventually went to $300,000 to secure the first foal of Grand Lodge mare Yarralumla.
As pointed out by Breednet, Dissolved “is from one of Australian racing's most outstanding families, with Yarralumla being a half-sister to seven times Group One winner and $5million earner Grand Armee, with other Group One winning relations including Dealer Principal, Drum and Anamato”.
Lonhro, of course, needs little explanation: winner of 11 Group Ones during his illustrious career, his progeny include Group One winner Denman, along with O’Lonhro, Demerit, Minnesota Shark and co.
Dissolved certainly got off on the right hoof with a win over 1206m at Sale on debut at the end of September, before an unlucky second over 1300m at Cranbourne.
However, it was back to the winners’ circle yesterday and according to the training triumvirate of Michael, Wayne and John Hawkes, Dissolved will be set for “bigger targets next autumn”.
Inglis Director, Peter Heagney, who was on hand to present the trophy, added: “Dissolved certainly looks a horse capable of measuring up to some nice races next year.”

Friday, October 23, 2009


A win to God’s Own filly, Kuroda Field, in tomorrow’s $251,000 Microflite Helicopters Inglis Juvenile (1000m) at Moonee Valley could well rate as the wedding present of a lifetime.
The daughter of exciting first season sire, God’s Own, this David Hayes trained filly is from the King Marauding city winning mare Tycoon Princess, closely related to Group Two winning 3YO Courvoisier and from the family of Champion mare Indian Skimmer.
Eliza Park stands God’s Own in conjunction with Yallambee Stud, which sold Kuroda Field at this year’s Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale.
Kuroda Field got her name from the Hawaiian memorial to US Army Sergeant Robert Kuroda who was, posthumously, awarded a Medal of Honour in World War II after single-handedly attacking two enemy machine gun emplacements in France.
In a rather more romantic twist, Kuroda Field was where Brian Bloom proposed to his wife Felice last September, before purchasing the God’s Own filly as a wedding gift when they married in April.
A match made in heaven!

PS. The official Medal of Honor citation for Robert Kuroda reads:
Staff Sergeant Robert T. Kuroda distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism in action, on 20 October 1944, near Bruyeres, France. Leading his men in an advance to destroy snipers and machine gun nests, Staff Sergeant Kuroda encountered heavy fire from enemy soldiers occupying a heavily wooded slope. Unable to pinpoint the hostile machine gun, he boldly made his way through heavy fire to the crest of the ridge. Once he located the machine gun, Staff Sergeant Kuroda advanced to a point within ten yards of the nest and killed three enemy gunners with grenades. He then fired clip after clip of rifle ammunition, killing or wounding at least three of the enemy. As he expended the last of his ammunition, he observed that an American officer had been struck by a burst of fire from a hostile machine gun located on an adjacent hill. Rushing to the officer's assistance, he found that the officer had been killed. Picking up the officer's submachine gun, Staff Sergeant Kuroda advanced through continuous fire toward a second machine gun emplacement and destroyed the position. As he turned to fire upon additional enemy soldiers, he was killed by a sniper. Staff Sergeant Kuroda's courageous actions and indomitable fighting spirit ensured the destruction of enemy resistance in the sector.
Brian Bloom reports that the vibes around Kuroda Field are promising and even if she doesn’t salute at the Valley, the filly appears to have a bright future. Fingers crossed she has the same courage under her first round of fire.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Champion Victorian Sire, Bel Esprit, is loitering just outside the nation’s top 10 sires by winners with a two state double on Monday (19 October).
Bel Esprit took his tally to 29 individual winners for the season when, firstly, Ring My Bel won over 1700m at Warrnambool, before Esprit of Eve scored a resounding victory over 1200m at Launceston.
Ring My Bel has been, well, ringing his bell for quite some time with four seconds and two thirds from 10 starts prior to the Warrnambool win.
Brian Donohoe reports in his Bel Esprit Blog that Ring My Bel has now had four trainers: Smokey Treloar (one start), Tony Vasil (five starts for two seconds and a third), Paddy Payne (two seconds from three starts) and currently Damian Hunter (a win and a third from two starts).
Smokey Treloar rode Bel Esprit throughout his highly successful 2YO season (including victory in the Blue Diamond-G1) and his wife, Noleen, bred Ring My Bel along with Danny & Nicki Quinlan.
Out of the Sober Star mare, Smoke There’s Fire, Ring My Bel raced at the rear for most of the 1700m journey before swooping in the final stages to grab the favourite by a head.
Esprit of Eve also dropped right back in her Launceston assignment but rapidly overtook her opposition to score easily.
This was Esprit of Eve’s second run for trainer Barry Campbell, having earlier finished third at Devonport on 5 October.
Previously trained by Chris Cook for a Hobart win in October of last year, Esprit of Eve was bred by Ken Williams and Ken Biggins and sold for $42,000 at the 2007 Adelaide Magic Millions.
Out of the Noalcoholic mare Apalachicola, Esprit of Eve is a half sister to three winners, including the stakes placed Ranch, and is a granddaughter of Moonee Valley black type winner Don’t Cry (dam of Flemington Group Two winner Tears Royal) and, in turn, a half sister to Caulfield Guineas winner Vitalic.
Bel Esprit statistician, Brian Donohoe, reports that Esprit of Eve is the third Bel Esprit to win in the Apple Isle, with Silver Bullion subsequently scoring at Moonee Valley.
Perhaps Esprit of Eve might follow suit?


Danehill stallion Danbird went within a whisker of a double on Sunday (18 October) when Hotham Heights scored a strong win over 1400m at Horsham, while the luckless Super Swell was beaten a lip over 1200m at Seymour.
Hot on on the hoof of Nesting’s win the previous Wednesday, Danbird is clearly coming into his own as his first crop – now spring 3YOs – mature.
Hotham Heights, bred by Trevor Brand, is out of the Mighty Avalanche mare Glacial Lily and similar to Nesting (from a Bletchingly mare), brings Star Kingdom into play. Danbird, a multiple stakes winners at two and four years, is from the Group winning mare Marscay mare Fitting, giving the likes of Hotham Heights and Nesting a double cross of the Aussie immortal.
Following on from his impressive debut when second at Benalla over 1206m on 4 October, Hotham Heights appreciated the extra distance at Horsham and was, deservedly, sent out a $1.80 favourite.
Sold to trainer Luke Oliver at the 2008 Inglis Melbourne Premier, Hotham Heights is a half brother to 8-time winner Alto Adige.
Super Swell is surely close to a win after running Harkaway to the barest of margins at Seymour.
Trained by Robbie Griffiths and purchased from Eliza Park’s 2008 Magic Millions Gold Coast draft, Super Swell was bred by Ariel Arnott and is a half sister to Bel Esprit Group One winner Bel Mer and Singapore flyer Mooring.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Eliza Park’s entries for the Magic Millions Horses in Training Sale on the Gold Coast (28-29 October) and Inglis Australian Racehorse Sale at Oaklands Junction (15 November) and now 'live' with pedigrees, comments, photographs and videos available on our website.
Eliza Park has eight 2 & 3YOs heading to the Gold Coast, including sons and daughters of Bel Esprit, God's Own, Statue of Liberty, Choisir (a 1/2 brother to G1 winner Grand Journey), Canny Lad, El Moxie, Dash For Cash and Hold That Tiger, while an even half dozen will be trucked down the road to Oaklands Junction including ready to run types by Testa Rossa (a 3/4 brother to 2009 G2 winner Stokehouse), Bianconi, Barley a Moment (a 1/2 brother to 5 winners), Undoubtedly and Timber Country (from a 1/2 sister to 2009 Doncaster Handicap-G1 winner Triple Honour).

Click here for the Magic Millions Horses in Training Sale
Click here for the Inglis Australian Racehorse Sale

Eliza Park's General Manager Racing, Sue Ellis, is presently on the Gold Coast supervising the draft and can be contacted on +61 407 517 324.

Video footage of the Choisir 1/2 brother to Group One winner Grand Journey.

Saturday, October 17, 2009


The Singapore Turf Clubs Craig Brennan was on hand to capture all the action from Lago Bays thrilling victory at Kranji (Singapore) on 16 October, when the Delago Brom 4YO equalled his own track record.

Trainer Don Baertschiger turned around what was shaping as an ordinary night when Lago Bay equalled his own track record in taking out the $95,000 Kranji Stakes B over 1000m on the Polytrack.
Baertschiger had saddled two odds-on favourites earlier in the night which had gone under.
Dan Baron was an $8 favourite in the $65,000 Restricted Maiden over 1000m and after leading knocked-up to run fifth while Just A Man slipped at the start as an $8 chance before finishing second in the $65,000 Graduation Stakes over 1200m.
Having his first start since August, Lago Bay, ridden by John Powell, scored by a length-and-a-half over Dishdasha (Mark Gallagher) with Be A Man (John Sundradas) a neck away third.
“That has certainly turned the night around,” said Baertschiger following Lago Bay’s win.
“I was disappointed with how Dan Baron tired in the straight while Just A Man slipped at the start but I thought he was a little disappointing when he finally did get clear in the straight.
“This horse (Lago Bay) showed he was right back to his best, but I must admit I did have a few concerns before the race.”
Lago Bay had shown good speed before tiring at his last two starts, once over 1200m and the latest over his favoured distance of 1000m.
“He had a bit of an infection which probably explains his previous two runs but he may also run his best races when a little on the fresh side,” said Baertschiger.
“I was a little concerned that he was up 8kg on his previous winning weight, but he was nice and fresh and well ridden by John.
“I think he’s proven that he’s just a 1000m horse tonight. There’s not a lot around for him until later in the year, so I’ll just look for another suitable race with him and keep him ticking over.”
While delighted with Lago Bay’s successful return to form, Baertschiger was equally as thrilled with the effort of the third placed Be A Man which rocketed home from the tail of the field.
Lago Bay, a four-year-old by Delago Brom from the Encosta de Lago mare Shirley’s Luvena, recorded his fourth win in 12 starts with a further five placings and took his prizemoney past the $200,000 mark for owners Bernard Lee and Paul Crawford.

Lago Bay races away to capture the Kranji Stakes.
Photo courtesy of Singapore Turf Club


Chris Hyland's lightning filly, Miss Phromily, notched up her second win in a fortnight with a blockbusting victory over 1223m at Mornington on 16 October.
Miss Phromily, who hails from the first crop of giant killing Encosta de Lago stallion Delzao, was bred by Richard Pietrykowski and is out of the Rubiton mare, Cornbread.
This is the immediate family of Oakleigh Plate-G1 winner With Me (dam of BTC Doomben 10,000-G1 winner Accomplice).
Sold by Paringa Park (now a division of Eliza Park) at last year's Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale, Miss Phromily has now recorded two wins and two placings from just four outings and is clearly above average.
Despite limited representation, Delzao (below) has produced 14 money earners from only 17 runners.


The win of Alesprit certainly caught the eye of Rockhampton's Morning Bulletin journo, Tony McMahon, who wrote the following after the Bel Esprit filly recorded her second win from four starts at the Gold Coast on 10 October.

Baralba's Sid Everingham has labelled his freakish speedster Alesprit a “superstar” after her knock-out win in near-course record time over 900 metres at the Gold Coast last Saturday.
Firstly trained by Rockhampton’s Vic Vagg and then Tom Bourke, Alesprit was having her first start under the training partnersh
ip banner of Bevan and Richie Laming last Saturday when she exploded away in the lead to win by 4.75 lengths and record 49.77 seconds.
“Did you see the sectional time for the 600 metres?” Everingham asked over the phone during our talk yesterday.
Indeed I did, as Alesprit ran a wind-fast 31.78 seconds.
To which Sid replied: “That’s just unheard of for the last 600 metres”.
Raced by Sid and his wife Diana Everingham, the couple bought Alesprit for $35,000 as part of the draught from Kerrod and Glenda Smyth’s Laurel Glen Equine Centre, Alton Downs at the 2008 Capricorn Yearling Sales.
At the previous year’s Magic
Millions National Winter Sale, Alesprit was sold as weanling at the Gold Coast by Oakwood Stud acting as agents for a paltry $2000.
Saturday’s win took Alsprit’s earnings to $52,800 from just four starts.
She was resuming from a second in the Capricorn Classic (1200m) at Rockhampton on April 4 which followed an 11.25 lengths record-breaking 1000 metres Rocky win registered as 56.76 seconds.
“We went down to the Coast last Saturday and Bevan said she was only about 85% fit,” Everingham said.
“Bevan (Laming) just said, ‘we’ll se
e what she can do’; I told Garry Baker the jockey that as he knows her, to let her go if she feels good. He told me Alesprit could have won by 10 or 12 lengths,” Sid enthused.
After the race Bevan Laming told Everingham that Alesprit would “improve four or five lengths”.
He said Alsprit had come through the race well and would now start at the Sunshine Coast in a $20,000 QTIS 3YO Class 3 Plate (1000m) on October 25.
“Then there are a few races for her at Eagle Farm and Doomben. I hoped there may be something for her soon in Melbourne.
“Anyhow, the money is good in Brisbane and after a
few starts she’ll come home to us and spell for six weeks before getting ready for the big autumn carnivals in the south next year,” he said.
Named after Everingham’s sister Alice Ploughman, Alesprit underwent surgery for fetlock chips in April, hence her absence from racing.
“The operation was a success and I have done everything right by the horse. “Now it is all coming together,” he said.
“I really think she is a superstar,” Sid said of his pride and joy Alesprit.
Time, with Sid naturally wishing it to be in the record department, in due course will tell.


Eagle Farm trainer Liam Birchley has a big opinion of his Danbird 3YO Nesting who fought on brilliantly at Doomben on 14 October to record a comfortable win over the 1040m.
Having only his first start, Stathi Katsidis sat Nesting just off the pace for most of the journey before pouncing in the fine stages.
Bred by the Hong Kong Breeders' Club, Nesting was actually sold at the New Zealand Summer Sale to Lakeview Stud who then placed the Danbird (below) gelding with Birchley.
Nesting is out of the Bletchingly mare Hacienda - who has now produced seven winners - and is a half sister to Group One winner and influential sire Snippets.
Hacienda is also a half sister to stakes winners Quick Score, Asawir, True Blonde (granddam of Golden Slipper winner Forensics) and stakes placed Singles Bar (dam of Not a Single Doubt).


Gillian Heinrich's nifty colt, Saint Eros rocketed home in a 1000m trial at the Gold Coast on 13 October to become the first trial winner for exciting first season sire, God's Own (below).
Gillian, who purchased the colt from Yallambee Stud as agent for $100,000 at the 2009 Gold Coast Magic Millions, said she had high hopes for Saint Eros and had done everything required of him.
At this stage it appears Saint Eros (bred by Portfolio Bloodstock) will head to Brisbane in a fortnight for a tilt at city success.
A half brother to 6-time winner Eleventh Command, Saint Eros is out of the city winner Dash of Love (by Last Tycoon) a three quarter sister in blood to Blue Diamond-G1 winner Lady Jakeo.


Barrie & Midge Griffiths are among the country's most astute breeders: and they're not too bad when it comes to selecting winners either!
Barrie sighted a Bel Esprit filly from the Zeditave mare Zapple at the 2007 Melbourne Autumn Yearling Sale - on consignment from breeder Greta West Stud - and snapped her up for a bargain $22,000.
Well, it certainly appears to be a bargain when the filly - now named Strudel and racing out of the Russell Bell stable - won her second race from six outings on 13 October by taking out the Moama Bowling Club F&M 0 - 68 Handicap over 1100m at Echuca.
Cleverly named, Strudel is a full sister to winner Apple Esprit, from a winning daughter of 5-time stakes winner Apple Danish.