Widden Stud had good results at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, including with its star sire Zoustar, whose 27 sold lots averaged $272,222 with a top of $900,000 for a colt sold via Newhaven Park, Boorowa.
Next month, the son of deceased Northern Meteor will begin his second northern hemisphere stud season at a fee of 30,000 pounds at Tweenhills Stud in Gloucestershire, England.
Covering 149 mares at his first northern hemisphere season last year, Zoustar was also highlighted on the track when daughter Madam Rouge won the $1m It's Live in Queensland Magic Millions Snippets.
Coolmore Stud's high-profile US-bred shuttler American Pharoah headed the Magic Millions first crop sires list with 20 sold lots for a $350,000 average and a top of $850,000.
Meanwhile, Coolmore sire Vancouver, along with Headwater, and Queenslander Jabali have registered their first juvenile winners.
Vancouver filly, Vangelic won on new year's day at Randwick, while gelding Jabali Ridge highlighted for his Exceed And Excel sire Jabali, and Wisdom Of Water won for Vinery Stud based Headwater.
Winning the feature $125,000 Aquis Gold Nugget Quality, previously Wisdom Of Water finished fourth to Away Game in the $2m Magic Millions Two-Year-Old Classic.
On Saturday Headwater added his second winner when filly Mileva won at Murray Bridge.
Three NZ deaths
New Zealand has suffered a loss of three significant stallions over the previous month - Tavistock, Burgundy and Sacred Falls.
Holding court at Cambridge Stud, Tavistock died aged 14 following ongoing complications after suffering a paddock injury.
A NZ-bred son of Montjeu, Tavistock leaves a legacy via his outstanding racing stock, including Group 1 winning sons Volkstok'n'barrell, Werther, Tavago and Tarzino.
Cambridge also euthanased its Redoute's Choice sire Burgundy who contracted acute laminitis. A $1.3 million yearling, Burgundy justified his price tag with his pedigree being a Redoute's Choice three-quarter-blood-brother to Darci Brahma, a champion NZ sprinter and now an outstanding sire.
Burgundy - a multiple group winner - has 21 yearlings catalogued at the coming NZ yearling sales.
Waikato Stud revealed the shock loss of promising young sire Sacred Falls, who suffered a fatal illness.
The son of Waikato Stud's deceased champion sire O'Reilly was in his fifth stud season, following an outstanding race career that netted him with nine wins including four at Group 1 level - two of them being in the time honoured Doncaster Handicaps at Randwick.
A total of 42 Sacred Falls yearlings will be offered at NZ Bloodstock's National Yearling Sales later this month.
Authorities rally for bushfire victims
While previously having some meetings abandoned due to wet weather, this year the annual Braidwood races have been cancelled due to persistent drought and fire conditions.
Braidwood Jockey Club's abandoned February 8 meet is among numerous race meetings to have met with a similar fate from last October. Drought and lack of water, fires, smoke and visibility have all contributed to racing's disruption. However, meets that are still capable of racing have supported bushfire charities.
On January 25 at Randwick, Racing NSW and the Australian Turf Club have joined forces to dedicate the day to raising funds for the 'Racing for the Bushfire Appeal', which includes race sponsorship funds being given to the appeal.
It is also free entry to all Rural Fire Service personnel and other volunteers assisting with the bushfires, as well as signed memorabilia from that day, such as jockey's silks and saddle cloths, with be auctioned to raise further funds.
It is hoped that with the support of the industry and public, close to $100,000 can be raised. This will be in addition to the $500,000 that Racing NSW is distributing to Thoroughbred racing industry participants impacted by the bushfires.
This comes on top of the Racing NSW emergency funding relief package for owners, trainers, jockeys, track riders, stablehands and other participants affected by the bushfires on the NSW South Coast, as well as additional financial support to ensure all horses are fed and cared for.