Second favourite unites parties
ence of being involved with a headline act in this week’s biggest show on the racing planet is one that Graham and Helen-Gaye Bax will never forget, but there’s more to that than a single horse-race.
The ink has just dried on a deal that has brought Wellington businessman Lib Petagna into a 50-50 partnership with the Baxes in Blandford Lodge, the property just down the road from the Matamata racecourse that they originally owned in partnership with their international model daughter, Kylie.
Several years ago Kylie sold her interest to international businessman Owen Glenn, and now he has put his Blandford Lodge holding up for sale.
The twist is that new Blandford partner Lib Petagna is also the owner of Lucia Valentina, having purchased her for $60,000 from the stud’s 2012 Karaka yearling draft.
When he made that decision on the advice of his bloodstock consultant, Bruce Perry, Lib was in fact going back to the source of one of his good winners, Darci Brahma colt Malandrino, an older half-brother of Lucia Valentina that cost $95,000 from Blandford’s 2010 Karaka offering.
Under his JML Bloodstock banner, Lib Petagna has raced numerous big winners over the years, one of the first of them the 2004 New Zealand 2000 Guineas winner Clean Sweep from Matamata’s Ballymore Stables.
Atlante won the same race in his colours last year, while with two group 1 wins and stakes in excess of $1 million, Lucia Valentina is surpassing all before her.
Lib’s decision to invest in Blandford Lodge is an exciting development for all parties and one the Baxes are looking forward to becoming immersed in once the dust has settled on the Melbourne Cup carnival.
‘‘We’ve known Lib and Bruce for a number of years and they’ve always been very good to deal with, so we’re certainly looking forward to developing a closer relationship with them,’’ Graham said from Melbourne as counted down to the Cup.
Back at home base, Staryn Glenn, the dam of Lucia Valentina, recently foaled a filly by leading Australian stallion Exceed And Excel, and she has since been covered by Waikato Stud stallion Savabeel in the hope of replicating her classy daughter.
TOGETHER: Star race mare Lucia Valentina has brought breeders Graham and Helen-Gaye Bax and owner Lib Petagna together in a Blandford Lodge partnership.