Saturday, April 30, 2011


Brian Russell, founder of Australian Bloodhorse Review (now Bluebloods) and one of the most widely read industry journalists, penned the following for his popular newsletter last week:

Lee Fleming, owner of one Victoria’s biggest and most fashionable studs – Eliza Park at Kerrie – has good reasons to be very happy with the return to glory of Hay List, the hulk from the west, at Randwick on Saturday (23 April) in recording a dominant, devastating win in the $400,000 Group One All Aged Stakes over 1400m, along with the performances in recent weeks of the awesome Black Caviar.
The victory of the 5YO, Hay List, his 14th win in 19 starts, suggested that he would he at this time respected as one of the great sprinters if it was not for an unbeaten rival in the world champion rated Black Caviar.
Hay List has met Black Caviar three times, flopping on the first occasion and more recently being very much the bridesmaid when runnerup to her in two Group Ones – the Lightning at Flemington and T.J. Smith at Randwick.
Fleming is not the breeder or owner of either horse, but in his wisdom he has installed both their sires at Eliza Park. Bred in Victoria by Rick Jamieson, Black Caviar is by Bel Esprit, the champion Australian sprinter who has been at Eliza Park since he retired from racing, but Hay List’s sire, the shuttling American bred Storm Cat product Statue of Liberty, only went in to use at the stud in 2009.
Used over 156 mares that year and followed with 130 last season, Statue of Liberty now shuttles between Eliza Park and Japan.
After winning his first eight starts and being unplaced at his ninth outing in the west, Hay List was transferred to John McNair at Gosford, NSW.
Hay List is the only winner from the handy Perth sprinter Sing Hallelujah, a daughter of the Western Australian shuttled American Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Is It True and Pucesca, a non-winning Marscay mare inbred 3x3 to Star Kingdom.
Hay List was a leg of an unusual double for Statue of Liberty on Saturday. Besides having Hay List take the top sprint of the day, an Irish bred 5YO, Stanstill, won Australia’s longest flat race, the Yalumba Handicap over 3600m at the Oakbank carnival.
The Yalumba win was the first time that Stanstill, a runner out of the Michael Kent stables at Cranbourne for 10 owners, including former top cricketer Simon O’Donnell, had been placed in five Australian starts, but he had been a useful staying handicapper in England, for four wins including two at 2800m.
Stanstill is the only winner beyond 2400m for the 11-year-old Statue of Liberty among his 179 winners worldwide (successful in 15 countries, 11 stakes winners, 12 stakes placed) of 396 races. He has done best with his Australian bred progeny, headed by Hay List, Mic Mac, Dan Baroness and Tempest Tost.
The success of Statue of Liberty continues that of the marvellous Lassie Dear family. He is a half-brother to Lemon Drop Kid (an American champion, prominent sire) and his dam Charming Lassie is a three-quarter sister to A.P. Indy (American Horse of the Year, champion sire), a half-sister to four stakes winners, including imported Spectacular Spy (sire of the granddam of Takeover Target), and to the dam of another importation in Bite the Bullet. Duke of Marmalade, the Ireland bred Danehill who was the European champion in 2008, is another relation.

Statue of Liberty ... sire of a remarkable double!

Sunday, April 24, 2011


Having pushed Black Caviar (Bel Esprit) all the way to chase him down in the TJ Smith-G1 last time out, Hay List (Statue of Liberty) gained handsome compensation with a dominant victory in the $500,000 All-Aged Stakes-G1 yesterday … his second win at the highest level.
With Glen Boss in the saddle following Glyn Schofield being injured when falling from Tinseltown (Pentire) in the Sydney Cup, Hay List stepped straight to the front and that was the last time his rivals saw anything other than his rump.
Clear into the straight Hay List quickened further clear and at the line had three and a quarter lengths to spare over Hinchinbrook, who ran on well widest of all, with Heart Of Dreams a half-head away in third.
”I’d love to have seen what he would have done on a dry track, I know it is probably a silly comment after seeing what he just did but both Glyn and I knew how well we had the horse going and he had improved markedly from last start and I think he proved that today,” trainer John McNair said.
”He has just been an unlucky horse, but he got the result today and that is all that matters.
”I knew Ray Murrihy wouldn’t let us go on if the track wasn’t safe, all I did was go out and walk it, see where the best going might be and I conveyed that to Glen and he knew in any case and the rest is history.
”You have to remember he struggled at Warwick Farm only a month ago, he improved going into the TJ [Smith] then I think he has improved again from then to today. That being the case if we had of been meeting Black Caviar after another run under our belt things might have been different but the difficult thing is now that every time we meet her we will be giving her two kilos.”
McNair intimated that the Goodwood Handicap-G1 at Morphettville next month is the plan for Hay List: “If transport can be arranged that will be on the agenda, he is a great horse with a high international rating but oddly enough this is his only his second Group One win so it would be nice to get a few more of those next to his name because he deserves them,” McNair added.
”It’s very bitter-sweet,” an emotional Boss said. “That was just a sit and steer job for me but obviously I am thinking about Schoey because this is his horse and I was just privileged to loan him for 10 minutes.
”Hay List just oozes so much power and talent, it is incredible. He just gave me a super start, he relaxed out in front, at the top of the rise I thought he was just going to be too good.
”It just goes to show just how good Black Caviar is, she spanks him every time they go around and he is a superstar … he felt like as good a sprinter as I have ridden.”
This is the 14th win from 19 starts for Hay List who has earned $1,656,325.

Photos by Bronwen Healy Photography
The photo says it all!


Hats off to Chris Waller (left) whose Group One double in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes and Sydney Cup at Randwick yesterday was memorable on so many counts.
However, two which stick in mind are where he purchased the winners from and, in the case of My Kingdom of Fife, from whom!
Both Stand To Gain (Sydney Cup) and My Kingdom of Fife (Queen Elizabeth) were snaffled out of the Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training Sale, with Waller paying 105,000 guineas for the former and 60,000 guineas for the latter.
Seeing as both picked up $300,000 apiece for yesterday’s wins, you could say that Waller’s spending spree was decidedly astute.
And, not without a sense of irony, My Kingdom of Fife’s victory in the Queen Elizabeth was fitting given that he was formerly owned by … Queen Elizabeth!
The 6YO gelding (below) was bred and raced by The Queen and trained by Sir Michael Stoute for whom he won three races, including the Heritage Handicap, and was placed eight times including two at Group Three level.
He was consigned to last year's Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training Sale where he was knocked down to bloodstock agent Alistair Donald of Sackville Donald on behalf of Australian Richard Pegum.
"We bought a horse off the Queen and he’s won the Queen’s race,” an excited Waller said. “These English horses have got amazing depth but they are very well tried.”

BEL NO. 95

With all the news surrounding Black Caviar at the moment, it was great to see the spotlight shifting – albeit slightly – to Robbie Griffiths game performer, Cascabel, who notched up his sixth career win with a solid victory over 1100m at Caulfield on Saturday.
Bred by Richard Pietrowsky and out of the Kala Dancer mare, Gogo Doll, Cascabel is owned by a great bunch of folks who have had plenty of fun with the Bel Esprit 5YO which Robbie picked up for a song at the 2007 Inglis Sydney Classic.
Cyberhorse picks up the story: Cascabel had not won since 26 April 2010 when taking out the $100,000 Blue Ribbon Foundation CRV Championship (1500m) at Bendigo.
Cascabel scraped into the 16-horse field on Saturday as second emergency with jockey Craig Newitt picking up the ride after his original mount Vocalic was scratched.
The blinkers were applied midweek at trackwork and remained on the son of Bel Esprit for raceday where it worked wonders.
Settling towards the rear of the field, Cascabel (below) flew down the outside to defeat Rocking Force by 1.25 lengths with Al’s Best Mate a further 0.75 lengths adrift in third.
All the spoils went to Cascabel who improved his impressive first-up record to three wins from five starts.

It’s well worth remembering that despite all the deserved clamour around Black Caviar, she is just one of 95 individual winners in Australia by Bel Esprit this season – plenty of champagne to go with the caviar!


Some interesting figures through the week courtesy of Bel Esprit statistical guru, Brian Donohoe.
Firstly, his yearlings sold in 2011 have averaged higher than previous years – including $220,000 for a filly on the Gold Coast – and Brian also reveals a couple of VERY compatible ‘nicks’.
For instance, 14 Bel Esprit progeny from Encosta de Lago mares have raced with 10 of them ending up winners, while other successful nicks include Brief Truce (5 from 5), Danehill (5 from 7), Naturalism (4 from 4), Bluebird (4 from 5), Marauding (4 from 4) and At Talaq (3 from 4), while Noalcoholic, Flying Spur, Geiger Counter, Rubiton and Zeditave all have three from three.
However, ruling the roost is Snippets with nine of his mares producing nine winners by Bel Esprit! Foremost among them is the stakes winner Vivacious Spirit, but there’s also Ibsen, Striding Success and Beleconi – four wins apiece – and the 3-time winner Snip Esprit.
And it’s worth remembering that Snippets is also the damsire of Bel Esprit’s stablemates Magnus and Wanted.

Monday, April 18, 2011


Leading Victorian trainer, Robbie Griffiths (left), has unleashed a potential stable star with the trial victory this morning of Written Tycoon 2YO, It Is Written.
Stepping out for the first time in an 800m trial at Cranbourne, the near black showed a clean set of hooves to a Charge Forward, a Churchill Downs and a Fastnet Rock … even one of Sheikh Mohammeds!
Snapped up in Adelaide last year by Griffiths for $45,000, It Is Written is out of the Danehill Dancer mare Winning Team, in turn a granddaughter of the top Melbourne mare Rebecca Gay.
Excuse the pun, but he’s worth writing down in your black book.


The opening session of the Inglis Melbourne Autumn Yearling Sale got off to a flyer at Oaklands yesterday.
A Written Tycoon filly topped the opening day at $80,000 which is well up on last year’s highest-priced lot, reports ANZ Bloodstock News.
The first lot through the ring was also by Written Tycoon and sold for $36,000, setting a positive trend that prevailed through the day with the clearance rate a very sold 81.8%.
The 156 lots that sold grossed $1,838,000 at an average price of $11,633 that is down on the final sale figure of $12,228 from last year
Eliza Park stallion Written Tycoon is currently the leading first-season sire by earnings in Australia and New Zealand.
The day’s highest priced lot, from the Bluebird mare Turtle Dove (Lot 206) [below], was prepared for sale by Eliza Park and the final price of $80,000 is well up on last year’s top price of $65,000
Purchased by EBA Victoria, the filly is a half-sister to five winners, including Queensland Derby-G1 runnerup Lords A Leaping, from the family of New Zealand Derby-G1 winner Coniston Bluebird.
Written Tycoon’s yearlings have sold up to $100,000 in 2011 and have averaged over $50,000 – almost 10 times his 2010 service fee.


Following Black Caviar’s victory in the TJ Smith-G1 at Randwick on 9 April, her earnings have zoomed to $3,212,550 and, as one inventive racing journo has pointed out, she is now worth her weight in Beluga.
The top grade of sturgeon sells at around six large per kilo and weighing in at 575 kilos, Black Caviar is – figuratively – now on par with the world’s most expensive dish … give or take a spoonful.

Friday, April 15, 2011


This week’s Easter Broodmare Sale has seen a flurry of activity from shareholders keen to engage the services of 2010 Newmarket Handicap hero, Wanted.
Following on from a recent dispersal in Perth which saw three mares in foal to Wanted sell up to $205,000 (averaging $161,666 overall), broodmares were purchased at Easter with the specific intention of visiting the stallion this spring.
Leading the charge was the More Than Ready Group winner Patronyme (in foal to Wanted’s sire Fastnet Rock) who was knocked down to EBA, on behalf of a shareholder, for $425,000. A speed family, Patronyme (below) was the winner of six, including the STC Birthday Card Stakes-G3 and Triscay Stakes-LR.
EBA also won out in a bidding duel for the brilliant Satin Robes, a granddaughter of Group One winner Lady Madonna and a stakes winner at Flemington in her own right. Satin Robes, who twice visited Fastnet Rock and is in foal to High Chaparral, was eventually sold for $175,000.
Yet another EBA purchase was the Rory’s Jester Group Two winner Toast of the Coast which brought $120,000. Snaring five wins from 1000-1200m, Toast of the Coast is from the Group Two winner Solo Show, a half sister to the dam of this season’s Brisbane stakes winning sprinter, Beyonce’s Star.
Other confirmations for Wanted in 2011 include Hennessy mare Categorical, dam of 2YO stakes winners Krupt (STC Todman Slipper-G2) and Anevay (VRC Talindert S-LR) – both by Danehill line stallions – and the well bred Angelic Belle, dam of 6-time stakes winner Here de Angels. Precocious speed in abundance!
Furthermore, two of the three mares purchased in Perth will return to Wanted this spring.
Meanwhile, Wanted’s run continued at the Easter Broodmare Sale when three in-foal matrons sold up to $140,000.
Wanted is certainly gearing up for another successful season following on from his initial book where 85% of his mares have been tested in foal.

Monday, April 11, 2011


The following is a press release from Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria:

Black Caviar’s victory in the G1 T.J Smith Stakes at Randwick on Saturday took Bel Esprit’s progeny earnings to in excess of $5.4million and in doing so put the Eliza Park resident in the top three on the Australian Sires List.
Whilst Black Caviar is responsible for quite a chunk of those earnings there are a large number of Bel Esprit’s progeny winning on the track, which is proven by the fact that he sits 5th on the list for Number of Winners.
Encosta de Lago was the last Victorian stallion to be so prominent on the Australian tables and not since Jugah have we seen a stallion dominate the Victorian stallion awards.
Bel Esprit will be crowned Champion Victorian Stallion for the fourth consecutive year at season’s end, a truly remarkable achievement.
Season 2010/11 could be a landmark one for Eliza Park as one of their young guns, Written Tycoon, currently sits in 1st position on the Australian First Season Sires List.
Thanks to the efforts of Masthead’s fourth in the Golden Slipper Written Tycoon is over $200,000 clear of his nearest rival Nadeem with a further $70,000 back to the third placed Ad Valorem.
Off the race track two more EP residents in Shinzig and Magnus have been turning heads at the yearling sales with spirited bidding amongst buyers at the Gold Coast and Melbourne sales seeing their progeny sell up to sixteen times their service fee.
Add to that mares in foal to Wanted were selling like hot cakes in Perth and you can forgive Lee Fleming for thinking the Easter Bunny has come early this year!


The Easter Bunny made his rounds early this year … well, as far as Eliza Park is concerned.
Earlier in the week, Black Caviar’s baby brother topped the Easter Yearling Sale when knocked down to Team Hawkes for $1.025 million and who will ever be able to forget the finish of the TJ Smith-G1 at Randwick on Saturday?
Black Caviar’s win was one for the ages: the way she ran down Hay List in the final 300m is still raising goose bumps and the sheer enormity of his performance – on the wrong leg, racing clockwise for the first time, digging deep when it counted and the amazing thing is, we still don’t know how deep they can dig! Let’s put it this way, Roget’s Thesaurus needs a re-write.
It was the mighty mare’s 12th straight and her fifth Group One on the trot – the earnings are have toppled over the $3 million mark and her sire Bel Esprit is now third on the Australian Sires’ premiership.
Indeed, Bel Esprit is holding sway over the likes of Redoute’s Choice and is only eight winners shy of the multiple Champion Sire (albeit with more wins – 137 to 136). Go Bel!
But let’s not forget the effort of Statue of Liberty’s boy, Hay List, in the TJ Smith. To the casual observer, Black Caviar might have made him look second rate, but nothing could be further from the truth.
Hay List led them up and hit that Randwick rise at lightning speed: a lot of VERY good horses have hit the wall entering the straight at Sydney’s headquarters but Hay List treated it like the downhill run at Lillehammer.
At the end of the day he was beaten by what may well be the best horse most of us have seen on Australian shores and left Australia’s (other) elite sprinters five lengths in his wake.
In any other era, Hay List would have won three Group Ones this season. It’s a similar story for Golden Slipper winner Crystal Lily – only seventh on Saturday, but a dual Group One winner in 2011 if not for Black Caviar.
As for the other members of the beaten brigade? Triple Honour … Group One winner. So is Alverta (who also ran third in the July Cup in England), Response has won two of them, so has All Silent and Shoot Out, Shellscrape won a Galaxy and was placed in two other Group One sprints, while Demerit … who is hot off a 5 length third to the brilliant More Joyous in the Group Two Canterbury Stakes, was 14 lengths behind Hay List in the TJ.
As Eliza Park’s Phil Marshall pointed out in a text on Saturday night – one is a superstar the other is a freak … and he didn’t even have his Thesaurus with him!


No mention of Black Caviar being the world’s best racehorse, but did announce that the wonder from down under is the first horse to qualify for the 2011 Breeders’ Cup ‘World’ Championships at Churchill Downs on 6 November following his victory in the TJ Smith.
Not sure if the BC for BC is on Peter Moody’s radar (funnily, he hasn’t phoned to consult me for a while!), but you’d have to think that a win in Kentucky would give Black Caviar mythical (i.e. Phar Lap) status!


It’s worth noting that Black Caviar’s TJ Smith victory – on a surface rated as Dead – was just 0.39 seconds outside of the course record set of 1:08.32 set by Northern Meteor in the Brian Crowley Stakes-LR 29 months ago.
It was however a race record and while the TJ Smith is fairly ‘new’ (Saturday was its seventh renewal as a Group One), the previous winners include Melito (2 G1s), Takeover Target (9 G1s), Apache Cat (8 G1s), Bentley Biscuit (3 G1s), Red Oog (2 G1s) and Shamekha (3 G1s). Spinning Hill – who won the race two years prior to its Group One elevation – was a 3-time Group One winner, while Mahogany (winner in 1997 when it was known as the Endeavour Stakes) finished his career with 8 Group Ones.

Thursday, April 7, 2011


God it’s confusing – all the God names I mean. It was a foregone conclusion that God’s Own would inspire a host of biblically dubbed progeny but Holy Registrar Batman, the list seems endless.
Godliness, God’s Own Country, Godlike, Godship, Godeera, God’s On Track, God’s Way, Godsana, God Help Us, God’s Creation, God Squad, God’s Valley, Godwilling, God She’s Raunchy (bet you they haven’t brought that name up in church!), God’s Son, God’s Secret, God Only Knows, God’s Honour, God’s Cobba, God’s Reward … and they’ve even named a yearling, God’s Tilla.
Well, yesterday it was the turn of the Sharyn Trolove trained God Help Her who proved far too nifty for the opposition when she scorched home to take out the Premier Signs Handicap over 1400m at Sandown.
Out of the stakes placed 2YO Volkiss, this filly is a granddaughter of the Group Two winning mare Kiss.
If it had been me, I would have had a tilt at calling her Kiss The Ring, but I’m already odds on for eternal damnation after showing a couple of Jehovah’s Witnesses what my door sounds like when it’s slammed shut.
Anyway, God Help Her clearly doesn’t need any help from me and yesterday’s win – her second from six outings (including three placings) – has certainly helped her sire’s persistent push up the second season sires’ chart.
Go with God!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Make sure you turn up to the Eliza Park hospitality marquee at the Inglis Melbourne Autumn Yearling Sale from next Friday (15 April) … we’ll be serving salmon!
Well, not really … in recognition of Black Caviar, the world’s best racehorse, Eliza Park will ‘theme’ its marquee in the mare’s now famous salmon and black silks.
And don’t worry about missing out on the actual salmon … as usual, there’ll be plenty to eat, plenty to drink and plenty to look at with 12 yearlings on offer including yearlings by Shinzig (a half sister to multiple Group placed Cassini and a half sister to Group placed Karalee from multiple Group winner Moralee), Written Tycoon (a half sister to multiple Group One placed Lords a Leaping), Desert Sun (from his last crop), Delago Brom (first foal of a close relation to Sacred Kingdom), Danbird (a half sister to Group placed Lascaux – 22 wins), Masterpiece, Desert King, Estambul, Gonski, Enemy of Average and King of Prussia.
The Eliza Park ‘Black Caviar’ marquee is again based outside Barn G at Oaklands Junction and we’ll look forward to seeing you there (the marquee will be open four days until the completion of the sale on Monday 18 April).

Monday, April 4, 2011


Everyone’s jumping on the Black Caviar bandwagon but what a great thing it is to see.
The Mantra Hotel in Sydney is offering a special rate for those visiting Sydney to watch Black Caviar in the TJ Smith-G1 at Randwick on Saturday, while there is also a special offer involved racecourse entry and merchandise.
On top of it all, there’s a saddlecloth – lugged by Black Caviar in the Newmarket – also up for grabs.
Check it all out at the Black Caviar fansite.


While all the attention swings to Sydney’s Newmarket sales ground this week for the Australian Easter Yearling Sale, it’s certainly a long way from the end of the stretch with the Easter Broodmare Sale next week (12-14 April) followed by the Melbourne Autumn Yearling Sale on 17-18 April.
Eliza Park will again have a major presence at both with 11 broodmares heading north while 12 youngsters will make their way to Oaklands Junction (available for inspection from Thursday 14 April).
Among the highlights for the Easter Broodmare are:
  • Lot 19: Let’s Rock Again – a G2 winning 2YO and G1 runnerup by Chief’s Crown and dam of Group placed Dehere Again; in foal to Sebring.
  • Lot 48: 4-time winner Mi Piachi, dam of Statue of Liberty 2YO winner Someday Somehow; in foal to Statue of Liberty.
  • Lot 138: Woodman mare Rhianna Louise, dam of recent Group winner Pepperwood and in foal to Denman.
  • Lot 222: 2YO winner and multiple stakes placed Testa Reale; in foal to Commands.
  • Lot 294: Rubiton Group winner Annesong (6 wins); in foal to Magnus.
  • Lot 299: South American Group winner Artist Johanna; in foal to Wanted.
  • Lot 320: Basic Instinct, an Honours List half sister to stakes winner Umaprince (22 wins); in foal to Written Tycoon.
  • Lot 389: Stakes winning 2YO Desert Move with two Magnus colts on the ground and in foal to Bel Esprit.
Meanwhile, the lineup for Autumn include colts and fillies by Shinzig (a half sister to multiple Group placed Cassini and a half sister to Group placed Karalee from multiple Group winner Moralee), Written Tycoon (a half sister to multiple Group One placed Lords a Leaping), Desert Sun (from his last crop), Delago Brom (first foal of a close relation to Sacred Kingdom), Danbird (a half sister to Group placed Lascaux – 22 wins), Masterpiece, Desert King, Estambul, Gonski, Enemy of Average and King of Prussia.

Desert Sun


When Malcolm Fraser said life wasn’t meant to be easy he was obviously talking about racehorse ownership too.
Imagine how the crew at Gooree felt on Saturday when their Fastnet Rock colt – Smart Missile – was scratched at the barrier in the $3.5 million Golden Slipper when second favourite after defeating eventual winner Sepoy at their previous meeting.
Gooree representative, Andrew Baddock, said post race that the decision to scratch the colt probably cost them “$20 million” in stud value.
However, it has served to highlight the boom on Danehill stallion Fastnet Rock who had five of the 16 Slipper entries line up on Saturday (unfortunately, Fast and Sexy – another of the Fastnet Rocks – was also scratched at the barrier).
Still, according to this morning’s ANZ Bloodstock News, Fastnet Rock still has three of the top four rated 2YOs in the country.
This is clearly the ‘new’ Danehill branch and augurs well for his first crop son and 2010 Newmarket Handicap-G1 winner Wanted, who had three mares sold in foal in Perth last week: selling up to $205,000 and averaging $161,666.
If they’re paying that much for mares in foal, imagine what his first crop yearlings will be making!


Saturday, April 2, 2011


Eliza Park’s highly popular stallion – WRITTEN TYCOON – cemented his position at the top of the Australian First Season Sires’ chart with the game fourth of Masthead in today’s $3.5 million AAMI Golden Slipper Stakes-G1 (1200m) at Rosehill.
Significantly, Written Tycoon was the only first season sire with a runner in this year’s Golden Slipper!
In touch with the leaders throughout, yet baulked for a run in the closing stages, Masthead fought on strongly to finish on the heels of third placed Elite Falls: an outstanding effort.
Sent out a $43.70 hope, Masthead was something of a ‘forgotten’ horse in the Slipper, considering his lead up performances. The Lee Freedman-trained speedster ran second on debut at Moonee Valley (behind Elite Falls), after a troubled run home, and was then beaten less than a length when fourth in the Maribyrnong Plate-G3 at Flemington in November before being tipped out for a spell.
Returning in mid February, Masthead powered home for a brilliant win in the $250,000 Inglis 2YO at Mornington, ran third to eventual Slipper winner Sepoy in the Group One Blue Diamond Stakes after being forced wide and, in his final Slipper leadup, copped a bump when fourth in the VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes-G2 on 12 March.
But Masthead is not the only Written Tycoon to put the runs on the board with the stakes placed Written Consent and city winner, Trump, also contributing to the cause.
Although the $190,000 stake for Masthead’s fourth has vaulted Written Tycoon clear of the first season opposition, the flashy chestnut was in the lead prior to the Slipper.
A very popular stallion since retiring to Eliza Park in 2007, Written Tycoon has covered 521 mares (his biggest book of 198 in 2010) and will again be in huge demand this spring.

Golden Slipper fourth Masthead wins the $250k Inglis 2YO at Mornington


Well done to Queenslander, Marylee Trivett, whose homebred – God’s Cobba – flew home for a resounding victory in the McGrath Plate over 1400m at the Gold Coast today.
Coming from well back on the turn on a slow track, God’s Cobba ploughed through to notch up his first win after finishing third on debut on 26 March.
Trained by Peter Tennant, who purchased the God’s Own 3YO for $35,000 at the 2009 Gold Coast Magic Millions, God’s Cobba is from the Zabeel mare, Zacobba, a granddaughter of the mighty mare Analie.
She was some racehorse that Analie: in 1973 she won the Doncaster, AJC Oaks, The Metropolitan, Queensland Derby and Oaks – all Group Ones – along with the Craven Plate, Canterbury Cup, STC Cup and Barnes Stakes.
At stud, she would go on to produce Blue Diamond Stakes-G1 winner Aare, a half sister to Zacobba’s dam Tasteful.


Brian Donohoe does a fantastic job with his Bel Esprit blog and leaves no stone unturned when it comes to updates on the Champion Victorian stallion and his progeny.
With the number of winners Bel Esprit is producing of late (he’s No. 5 on the Australian General Sires’ chart by winners), Brian has plenty to brag about and – not surprisingly – is getting a fair amount of traffic to his blog.
Let’s face it, if just a third of the owners of Bel Esprit racehorses took a look, it would be one of the busiest racing blogs in the country!
Anyhow, we’re not going to steal Brian’s thunder (as if we could), so suffice to list the Bel Esprit winners during the past week:
  • Globalwarmnsceptic (2 April @ Oakbank): second win in as many starts after winning at Morphettville on 19 March)
  • Laudit (31 March @ Seymour): Bel Esprit’s 100th individual winner for the season
  • Washbash River (29 March @ Sale): a win and two seconds from four outings
  • Apple Esprit (28 March @ Ararat): lightly raced first cropper wins third race for new trainer Austy Coffey
  • Belwins & Lazaroo (27 March @ Penang): a double for Bel Esprit in Malaysia – now has winners in seven countries
  • Black Caviar, Bel Rhythm & Royal Express (25 March @ Moonee Valley, Geelong & Albury): Bel Rhythm, a win and two seconds from as many starts; Royal Express third win in a row; and just in case you’ve come out of a coma, Black Caviar notched up No. 11
Bel Esprit

    Friday, April 1, 2011


    Australia’s unbeaten 4YO sprinting mare Black Caviar (Bel Esprit) has been officially rated the world’s best racehorse in yesterday’s 1st release of World Thoroughbred Rankings for 2011 by the International Federation Of Horse Authorities in Paris. Her 3-lengths victory (despite carrying top-weight) in the Group One Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington in Melbourne on March 12 (clocking 1min 7.36sec, the fastest in the 137-year history of the race, despite being eased down over the final 100m) was rated at 130 by the IFHA - the best performance by a thoroughbred anywhere in the world for the 6-month period from 1 October 2010-27 March 2011. Black Caviar is now:

    • The highest-rated sprinter since the World Thoroughbred Rankings commenced, eclipsing Oasis Dream (125 in 2003)
    • The first sprinter to head the World Thoroughbred Rankings
    • The 1st Australian horse to head the World Thoroughbred Rankings
    • The highest-rated Australian horse, eclipsing So You Think (126 in 2010)
    • The equal-highest-rated mare, joining French champion Goldikova (130 in 2009)

    ANZ Classifications Committee chairman (& Australia’s representative on the World Thoroughbred Rankings Committee) Greg Carpenter said the IFHA announcement was “monumental” and declared: “This is a landmark day for Australian racing with Black Caviar heading the list of the Top 50 active thoroughbred racehorses in the world. Winners at the Dubai World Cup meeting, US Breeders Cup meeting, Hong Kong International meeting and French Arc De Triomphe have all been rated inferior to Black Caviar.
    “That helps put into context the enormity of her achievement in winning the Group One Newmarket Handicap and indeed her amazing sprinting performances over the past six months. It is particularly pleasing that she has broken ground for sprinters in the World Thoroughbred Rankings and showcased the growing strength of Australian racing on the world stage.”