WHILE “rubbing” shoulders with some notable and champion stallions during my travels in recent months, I also came across three retired and formerly well-known favourites that should be recalled by enthusiasts. A stallion, a gelding and a mare - being Danewin, Burst, and Able Friend.
A spritely 27-year-old, Danewin belongs to the first crop of foals by the mighty Danehill, and is in retirement at Aquis Farm, the Murrurundi property where the bay horse has stood his entire stud career when known as Emirates Park. He won 13 races including five Group 1 races of 2000 metres each, which boosted Danewin to be a champion Australasian three-year-old. While his below fertility through his stud career has been well documented, Danewin still sired 280 winners (of 1198 wins) including 30 stakes winners (including four millionaires) amongst his $50.9 million in progeny earnings.
He did have some success via his stud sire sons, however importantly it is the legacy of Danewin’s producing daughters that have proved more prominent. His daughters, which have produced over 228 winners, also include 12 stakes winners one of these being dual Caulfield Cup winner Fawkner. Able Friend returned to his birthplace of Stuart Ramsey’s Turangga Stud near Scone after his racing retirement in early 2015. A son of Shamardal, Able Friend fetched $550,000 when selling from Turangga’s draft at the 2011 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale. The chestnut gelding raced for the majority of his career in Hong Kong, when prepared by John Moore, and won 13 races and became a HK Horse Of The Year and champion miler.
Champion Australian two-year-old in 1992, Burst is spending her twilight years at her birthplace much to the delight of owners John and Sarah Kelly at the Kelly family’s Newhaven Park near Boorowa.
Trained by Clarry Conners at Warwick Farm, Burst was a home-bred filly for the Kelly family being by their then resident Imperial Prince sire Marauding, who – as the filly did in 1992, brilliantly won the prestigious Golden Slipper Stakes-G1 for two-year-olds at Rosehill in 1987. In total Burst won seven races including Sydney’s triple crown of juvenile races adding the Sires Produce Stakes-G1 and Champagne Stakes-G1 before she finished her first season racing.
While Burst caused much excitement with race-goers on the racecourse, she proved a poor breeder. The chestnut mare has been represented with 11 named foals, two of these included minor winning full-siblings Stocktake and Freedom Tower who are by Coolmore Stud’s former shuttle sire Peintre Celebre.
Provincial Racing Challenge
WITH success surrounding the inaugural $1 million The Kosciuszko – a race restricted for country trained gallopers, provincial clubs now has its own summit to climb with the introduction of the Sky Racing Provincial Spring Series. Funded by Racing NSW and the five provincial clubs, the sixth heat race Series is worth $400,000 and had its third race scheduled for Hawkesbury today. Each of the five new qualifying races are worth $50,000, with the two remaining races to be held at Newcastle on Sunday November 18 and Gosford on Saturday November 24. Sponsored by Sky Racing, the Series culminates in the $150,000 final over 1600 metres at Kembla Grange on Saturday December 1.
Northern Rivers staying races
Champion Australian two-year-old in 1992, Burst is spending her twilight years at her birthplace much to the delight of owners.
TAB clubs in the Northern Rivers Racing Association have been running their own initiative this season by introducing a series of staying races in their region. The 16 race series, which began in September, was initiated by the NRRA who developed a program for staying types that caters for horses from maiden grade to benchmark 66-rated horses. This will culminate at Grafton on December 2.