Eras intertwined in Cambridge Stud draft

Eras intertwined in Cambridge Stud draft18 Jan 2020

The proud Hogan legacy joins forces with the influence of new owners Brendan and Jo Lindsay to create a quality Cambridge Stud draft for the 2020 New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sale.

Cambridge Stud was lifted to world renown by Sir Patrick and Lady Justine Hogan, breeding more than 40 Group One winners and claiming the title of leading vendor at New Zealand’s national yearling sale for 31 consecutive years.

The iconic property was bought by the Lindsays in late 2017, and they took ownership in April of the following year.

“The yearlings in this draft are the result of last matings arranged by the Hogans with their Cambridge Stud mares, while there’s also a strong representation of Brendan and Jo Lindsay’s mares with a sprinkling of Australian stallions they selected,” Cambridge Stud’s chief executive Henry Plumptre said.

“We’re hoping the draft will be well received. We’ve had good attendance and feedback for our parades.”

It could be a big week for the Lindsays, whose star filly Probabeel is the $1.60 favourite for the Karaka Million 3YO Classic (1600m) at Ellerslie on the eve of the sale. She is shooting for a slice of history as the first Karaka Million 2YO (1200m) winner to return the following year to win the 3YO Classic.

The Lindsays also have Not An Option ($3.80) and Taroni ($12) prominent in the TAB’s fixed-odds market in their quest for back-to-back wins in the Karaka Million 2YO.

Big results on the racetrack and in the sale ring would be a welcome change of fortune for everyone involved with Cambridge Stud after a horror start to the season.

“We’ve had a pretty devastating six months, losing three stallions (Roaring Lion, Burgundy and Tavistock),” Plumptre said. “We’ll be offering 25 yearlings by Tavistock at Karaka as a key feature of our draft.

“Tavistock was in a bit of a quiet patch at the time we lost him, but he’s got some good-numbered crops coming through. Buyers kept the faith in him at Karaka last year, they bought good numbers of yearlings who are two-year-olds now.

“We’re racing a good half a dozen Tavistocks ourselves, including a lovely filly out of Full of Spirit that we bought at the Ready to Run Sale in November.

“Tavistock is going to be a very big loss for us, but we’re looking forward to selling some lovely yearlings by him at Karaka.

“The best colt is probably Lot 417, the half-brother to Bavella. He’s a really nice horse with scope and length.

“Another one out of the mare is the two-year-old Vernazza, who won very well at Ellerslie last weekend. We think she’s possibly our best domestic two-year-old filly this year. Lance (Noble) has a lovely little filly (Taroni) in the Karaka Million, but we think Vernazza has the size and scope to grow into an extremely nice three-year-old. So the dam Zonza, who was a stakes winner herself, could be a bit special.

“In terms of the Tavistock fillies, there’s Lot 31 – she’s out of Kilfenora, who is by Zabeel out of L’Quiz, making her a sister to Champagne and St Reims. This filly is a quality, elegant yearling with a lovely attitude and good temperament. I’d be surprised if she couldn’t run.”

Meanwhile, the Hogan influence is strong in a couple of other notable members of the 2020 draft.

“Lot 13 is by Snitzel out of Katie Lee. She was a great mare for Sir Patrick, and this was one of his key matings from that season. The colt isn’t overly big, but he’s strong and walks well.

“Katie Lee may have been a little disappointing as a broodmare, but there’s an Iffraaj two-year-old this season with Team Rogerson (Brazier) who is held in very high regard.

“We also have a nice Exceed and Excel colt (Lot 368) who was bred by Sir Patrick. He’s a sharp, well-built, well-developed type. I was involved with a lot of Exceed and Excel racehorses when I was at Godolphin, and he’s very much in their mould.”

Plumptre pointed to progeny of Tarzino, Savabeel and Lonhro as his other favourite yearlings in the 2020 draft.
“We have a couple of nice yearlings by Tavistock’s son Tarzino, and they look very much like Tavistock – good length and scope,” he said.

“We have a stunning Savabeel filly out of Silk Pins (Lot 283) for Max Whitby, who I’d expect to go very well. I also really like our Lonhro filly (Lot 447). Lonhro was always one of my absolute favourites when I was at Godolphin. He’s been a phenomenal stallion.”

All in all, Plumptre is hoping for a strong Cambridge performance as part of a highly successful Karaka sale.

“I’ve been asked to predict how the Karaka sale will go, and my reply was that I don’t make predictions,” he said.

“I think that any expectation that we’ll just continue off what happened in the Magic Millions Sale would be wrong. We’re not offering the same product, and it’s not the same market. We’re selling different types of horses who’ll run over different distances.

“But hopefully we can entice a good number of Australian buyers over – they are our major market. New Zealand Bloodstock has given good reports about bookings and things like that.

“Our horses had a good spring, with a number of Group One horses (including Kolding, Melody Belle, Te Akau Shark and Miami Bound), which may well help.

“One thing that we can rely on is that our yearlings have been raised on the very-best quality grass, which unfortunately hasn’t been the case in Australia.” – NZ Racing Desk