Sprinter stallion stands at Waikato
THE arrival of high class international galloper Paco Boy at Waikato Stud last week is yet another reminder that the 2011 breeding season is about to get into full swing.
Several new season foals have already been born at the Tower Rd nursery and in just two week’s time the whole process will start again when the flag goes up on September 1 for the first coverings to take place.
Paco Boy arrived at Waikato 10 days ago fresh out of quarantine after flying from the United Kingdom with fellow shuttle stallions headed for various studs in New Zealand and Australia.
The last of his 24 career starts was the Cathay Pacific Champions Mile at the Hong Kong international meeting in December.
Over the preceding four years from the stable of English trainer Richard Hannon, Paco Boy’s passport had been variously stamped with trips to France, the United States, the United Arab Emirates and finally Hong Kong.
After an introductory two-year-old season in which he won twice and finished third from three starts, Paco Boy developed into one of the very best sprinter-milers.
His 11 wins included Group One success at three, four and five years, namely the Longchamp Prix de la Foret, the Royal Ascot Queen Anne Stakes and the Newbury Lockinge Stakes. That’s seriously good form by any standard – complete with the 2009 champion European miler title – and makes Paco Boy a valuable acquisition for the New Zealand thoroughbred breeding industry.
When the curtain was coming down on his racing career late last year, Waikato Stud entered a joint venture with leading United Kingdom nursery Highclere Stud. Paco Boy therefore comes to New Zealand having covered his first book of 130-plus mares in the northern hemisphere, complete with a very pleasing 90 per cent fertility result.
‘‘He was one of the very best gallopers of his generation whose trademark was a brilliant turn of foot at the end of his races,’’ said Waikato Stud’s Mark Chittick.
‘‘That’s just the sort of horse we like to stand here, so he certainly fits the bill.
‘‘We couldn’t have been happier with his condition and overall appearance when he stepped off the float last week. When you see how athletic he is in the flesh you can understand why he was such a quality racehorse.’’
Paco Boy, who will stand at a fee of $12,500, joins proven stallion No Excuse Needed as the second European-bred stallion to take up duties at Waikato Stud, with the remainder of the 2011 roster comprising O’Reilly, Pins, Savabeel and Rios.
O’Reilly is on the cusp of siring his landmark 50th stakes winner, while Pins ended the 2010-11 season as the winner of the same title O’Reilly won two years ago, the Centaine Award for international performance, having claimed the Hong Kong sires’ premiership, second on the New Zealand table and in the top 10 in Australia.
Without doubt the big mover of the past season in New Zealand stallion ranks was Savabeel, the Cox Plate-winning son of Zabeel whose progeny were always going to be better with time and maturity.
His season ended in a flourish through the deeds of Queensland Oaks winner Scarlett Lady and Brisbane Cup winner Tullamore.
This Sunday, Waikato Stud will open its doors to the public from 10am to 2pm, enabling any interested parties the opportunity to inspect the newcomer Paco Boy as well as catch up with the remainder of the stallion line-up.
While the weather is far from settled throughout the country, the signs are encouraging that the new racing season is also swinging into gear.
Taupo last Friday was the scene of several smart performances by locallytrained horses, headed by maiden graduates Ballynova, Manny Pacuiao and Golden Globe and the speedy two-race winner She’s Invincible.
Glenn Old opened proceedings at Taupo with the promising stayer Ballynova, who capped off some handy placed form when combining with Cameron Lammas to take the maiden middle-distance event.
Jason Bridgman got his second win for the new term with his well regarded gelding Manny Pacuiao in the hands of new stable jockey Matt Cameron, while Jim Collett saddled up first starter Golden Globe for a smart win over 1000 metres.
It’s been a trying winter for the former top jockey, who has only just been able to discard his crutches after suffering a broken lower leg in a training track accident in June. The manner in which Golden Globe overcame a wide draw to dispatch his Taupo rivals for Jim’s daughter Samantha gave the impression that this wouldn’t be the last we’ll be seeing of the speedy threeyear-old.
Abundant speed also served the Andrew Scotttrained She’s Invincible well when she notched her second win from six starts. She’s Invincible races for a syndicate that includes her breeders, Casey and Michelle Dando and Michelle’s mother Margaret Messent.
Others in the partnership are Michelle’s father, former jockey John Messent, trainer Andrew Scott’s wife Sarah, local stock agent Jason Roberts and real estate agent Jack Van Lierop.
‘‘When we put the syndicate together we managed to talk Jack into signing up,’’ said Casey Dando, who operates the new Te Poi agistment and sales preparation farm Bradbury Park.
‘‘After all Jack sold us the property, so we figured he could take a share in one of our horses.’’
Saturday’s Te Rapa meeting also produced a couple of locally-trained winners in the form of allthe-way maiden winner Toma Valea and promising mare Dazzling Heights. After showing flashes of ability in his 12-start career, Toma Valea really stepped up to the mark at Te Rapa for an easy win, kicking on well for Reese Jones to score by a margin.
His trainer Mark Brosnan came away from Te Rapa also pleased with the second placing by his filly Danrose.
Although she was unable to complete a hat-trick after wins at her first two starts, Danrose still did well stepping up against older age rating 80 opposition and looks a real chance for early season three-year-old filly features.
Paul Jenkins has another galloper of real potential by champion stallion Zabeel.
Dazzling Heights had broken through for her first win at Ruakaka earlier in the month and managed the step up in grade with ease.
Star stud: New Waikato Stud stallion, the high class international performer Paco Boy.