A liking of the Without Fear line set breeder David Strain on a path that led from hobby breeder to where we all aspire to be – the winners circle at racing’s headquarters, Flemington.
Purchasing from the Southwick family (successful owners of such outstanding gallopers as the Caulfield Cup winner Sobar) a daughter of Without Fear in the mid 1990s, Strain – who at that stage raced just a couple of horses with Wodonga trainer Lloyd Park – became a breeder.
The mare’s name was Beth and whilst, during a short career (she died foaling in 2001), she managed to produce just two horses to get to the track, both were winners and one, the four times winning Rokosz mare Yarraliss, is dam of one of Victoria’s most promising fillies.
That filly is Bolisimo Miss (below), a daughter of Bel Esprit who, having been given time to mature after a debut sixth at Sandown in late January, burst into the scene over the winter months winning three races in a row.
Breaking her maiden in easy style at Cranbourne in mid-June, the Ellerton/Zahra trained bay stepped straight up to city class – recording two soft victories down the Flemington straight.
And it is those wins that earned David Strain the title North East Thoroughbreds’ Super VOBIS High Achiever.
“This is a great privilege,” Strain said. “Everyone battles for a good horse and when it turns up it’s a real pleasure.”
Breeding with seven mares at a property “just across the creek from Wangaratta racecourse,” Strain is excited by every foal that arrives – “with every new horse there is a chance that this could be the one!”
Early on Strain was told by breaker Craig Dickson that Bolisimo Miss was one out of the box – “after his second ride he told me she was a good horse,” he recalled, “a smooth and powerful ride.”
Visited by Mathew Ellerton last weekend, Bolisimo Miss will enjoy another four weeks in the paddock before a brief spring campaign with feature races over the autumn pencilled in.
- Kristen Manning