Hunter Valley horsemen and women prepping yearlings for the Gold Coast Magic Millions haven’t been spared the heavy rains sweeping through NSW.
Scone and surrounding districts are experiencing a once in 20-year flood event just six weeks out from the start of the 2022 yearling sale series. Vinery Stud, with a draft of 29 yearlings heading to the Gold Coast, is in better shape than most given the magnitude of the deluge.
“I’ve never seen it this bad but we’ve only had to move a few mares and foals to higher ground,” Vinery Bloodstock Manager Adam White told TDN. “We have river frontage so the water can drain quickly.”
Further north, Cressfield General Manager Wayne Bedggood and his foaling team dodged floodwaters on Friday and then the lights went out while delivering their last foal for the season…a Snitzel colt from Artistry.
Cressfield has a marvellous strike-rate with its graduates by Vinery sire Headwater and Bedggood offered the following comments about its two Gold Coast colts by Australia’s Champion second season sire.
Lot 367 – Headwater – Pfeiffer (Storm Cat)
From a USA-bred daughter of Epsom Princess Elizabeth Stakes Gr.3 winner Sundrop (Sunday Silence). Three to race for three winners.
“He’s a robust, flashy individual with a great temperament. He looks an early type with good bone and strength throughout. He will sell well.”
Lot 809 – Headwater – Black ‘n’ Tough (Tough Speed)
Dam was a multiple Stakes winner in Tasmania and a Moonee Valley sprint winner over Caulfield Stakes winner Serene Star.
“Hard to fault and arguably our nicest yearling going to the Gold Coast. He’s an athletic, strong individual with good bone and looks another colt who will go early.”
Cressfield sold Headwater’s star filly Jamaea at the Gold Coast in 2020 and his last-start Ballarat Classic winner Aquagirl was a Cressfield graduate in 2019.
Jamaea has earned $900,000 for owners Bruce and Ken Noble after being knocked down for $130,000. She was successful in the Percy Sykes Stakes Gr.2 at Randwick in April and returned to headquarters in September to win the Furious Stakes Gr.2.
Fresh from a huge home-town pay-day with Count De Rupee in the $1million The Gong last week, trainers Rob & Luke Price have Jamaea in work for the $2million Magic Millions 3YO Guineas (RL, 1400m).
“She’s been back for five weeks today,” Rob Price said on Monday morning. “We’re really happy with her and, weather permitting, she will have a jump-out next week.”
Price confirmed the Gold Edition Plate (L, 1200m) at Eagle Farm on December 18 as the likely lead-in to another rich assignment at the Gold Coast on January 15.
Headwater’s Melbourne mare Aquagirl is from Cressfield’s Class of 2019 and there are sprinting options for her at the Gold Coast. She sold for $55,000 and has returned $222,450 to date for a syndicate managed by Wylie Dalziel.
“Aquagirl is worth quite a bit already,” Dalziel said after the Ballarat Classic. “She’s well-bred with a Group 3-placing to her credit at Caulfield. She races for a great bunch of owners and they’re keen on the Gold Coast.”