Perennial Victorian champ, Bel Esprit, is on the verge of creating history.
Having already gained global recognition – and a degree of immortality – via his daughter Black Caviar, Bel Esprit has now produced 155 individual winners for the season – joining Commands (2010-11) – on the all-time high list of winners in an Australian season.
(Well, we’re pretty sure 155 is the record, following consultation with the Stud Book, Bluebloods and Stallions chief, Andrew Reichard, Jeff Kruger from Lyndhurst Stud – whose Celestial Dancer broke all sorts of records in the 90s – and the doyen himself, Brian Russell).
The record equaling effort came from Chiming, who won by a massive 4.5 lengths at Devonport on Wednesday, following a string of placings in the past 12 months.
Out of the Western Symphony mare, East Meets West, Chiming was, somewhat appropriately, bred by long-time Eliza supporter and former Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria treasurer, Ruth Frenzel.
Importantly, and contrary to oft-quoted opinion, Bel Esprit has achieved this record-equaling performance with a superior winners to runners strike rate to any of his predecessors in the past 10 seasons.