Leading the Way on the Gold Coast

Date: 16 Jan 2024

Leading the Way on the Gold Coast

Te Akau principal David Ellis CNZM was leading buyer after three days of the 2024 Gold Coast Yearling Sale last week - we have purchased simply outstanding yearlings that you can be involved with now!

Preparing to be active during the Magic Millions yearling sale which began on 9 January and concludes today, the buying team of Ellis, Mark Walker, Marcus Corban, and racing manager Reece Trumper, did their farm inspections of drafts in December and flew out again on 5 January to the sales complex on the Gold Coast.

Regarded as the ‘Queen’ of the sales, Ellis purchased sale topping Lot 454 bay filly Wootton Bassett – Avantage (Fastnet Rock) for A$2.1 million from the draft of Coolmore Stud. 

She is the first foal out of Avantage, whom Ellis purchased as a yearling at Karaka, and she won an astonishing nine Group Ones, for the Te Akau Avantage Syndicate (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM).

Avantage won 16 of 28 races and $2.1m in prize money - her nine Group Ones were accompanied by a Group 2 in New Zealand and two Group Three wins (one in New Zealand and one in Australia). She was also Group One placed six times (five times runner-up), with two other stakes' placings to her credit.  

In 2021 she win successive Group One races over 1200m (Railway and Telegraph), 1400m (Waikato Sprint), 1600m (Otaki WFA), and finished second in the Bonecrusher (2000m) - underlining her true versatility and talent.

Avantage set an online world record for the sale of a broodmare -  $4.1 million - when sold online through Gavelhouse.com to Coolmore Australia, where this filly was foaled.

Notable in recent times, the formation of the Te Akau 2023 Stallion Breeding Syndicate and Te Akau 2023 Magic Fillies’ Breeding Syndicate, both managed by Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM, have each met with great success.

The two colts that Ellis bought at the 2023 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale, Move To Strike (2 c I Am Invincible – No Evidence Needed, by Shamardal) and Unbridled Joy (2 c Snitzel – Joy Forever, by High Chaparral) have begun their racing careers in style.

Move To Strike was very impressive when winning on debut at Te Rapa, before being beaten narrowly on off ground by stable-mate Bellatrix Star (Star Witness) in the Eclipse Stakes (Gr. 2, 1200m) on 1 January at Pukekohe. While Unbridled Joy finished strongly on debut for second to stable-mate When Stars Align (Zoustar) on 23 December at Trentham.

With that success front of mind, the Te Akau chief also signed for Lot 332 bay colt Snitzel – Vaujany (Lonhro) for A$1.3 million (draft: Blue Gum Farm), and Lot 84 chestnut colt Zoustar – Ready To Soar (More Than Ready) for A$1.1 million (draft: Segenhoe Stud) - these two colts will comprise the Te Akau 2024 Colt Syndicate, with now only 20% available such has been their popularity.  Both boast stunning depths of pedigree, stallion credentials for sure.

Te Akau's 2023 Magic Millions' Filly Syndicate has also gotten off to a flying start this season - it started with a bang when Captured By Love (2 f Written Tycoon – Moldova, by Snitzel) won on debut, before racing clear to win the Group 2 Wakefield Challenge Stakes over 1100m by three lengths at Trentham. Beautifully relaxed filly The Victress (2 f Zousain – Liesele, by Exceed and Excel) showed her class with a winning debut on 3 January at Te Aroha.

The 2024 Filly Syndicate shares are also selling like hotcakes - and no wonder when you see the two quality fillies purchased by Ellis for this partnership.  The first is Lot 81 bay filly Snitzel - Re Edit (Camelot) for A$440,000. Joining her in this 2024 partnership, Lot 327 Savabeel - Urban (O'Reilly), she's as cracking a Savabeel filly as you will ever see and was knocked down to Ellis for A$400,000.  

Ellis knows a lot about top Savabeel's having purchased the likes of multiple Group One winner and dual Horse of the Year Probabeel, Group One winner and NZB Filly of the Year Amarelinha and many other Group One winners by Savabeel:

Embellish (at stud), Noverre (at stud), Cool Aza Beel (at stud), Prise De Fer, Sword of Osman, Hall of Fame, and many other Group winners, the list goes on. Te Akau has also trained Savy Yong Blonk, The Perfect Pink and Skew Wiff, all by Savabeel, to Group One glory.

Other exciting yearlings coming home to Te Akau include:

Lot 51 Zoustar - Positive Problems filly from a family rich in black type; Lot 65 Savabeel - Percentage colt, a half brother to two Australian stakes' winners in Revolutionary Miss and Equation; Lot 257 Savabeel - Summer School filly, also with stacks of outstanding stakes' success in her notable family; Lot 358 Bivouac - Whitehaven Bay, a striking colt by an exciting new stallion who was an outstanding racehorse, the family of sire Vancouver and Champion 3YO Skating; Lot 493 Snitzel - Bright Path filly (all sold), and last but definitely not least Lot 1200 Cool Aza Beel - Irene filly, her 3rd dam the Champion 2YO Filly in Australia, looks precocious and was certainly value at A$55,000!

He also bought Lot 19 bay colt I Am Invincible – Palace Talk (Street Cry) for A$1.3 million (draft: Yarraman Park) together with Tom Magnier, with the colt bound for Te Akau's Cranbourne stable in due course.

While Ellis has been leading buyer for 18 consecutive years at the Karaka sales, his success also runs deep with purchases in Australia.

Champions Princess Coup (Encosta de Lago), Imperatriz (I Am Invincible), and Sword Of State (Snitzel), Group One Guineas’ winners Tell A Tale (Tale of the Cat) and Costa Viva (Encosta de Lago), Group One winner Campionessa (Contributer), stakes' winners Integrate (Integra), Gold Fever (Savabeel), Cognito (So You Think), Bright Blue Sky (Fastnet Rock) and Sky On Fire (Exceed and Excel), just to name a few have come from his purchases at Magic Millions.

With the Te Akau Racing training operation extending this season to include Cranbourne (Victoria), where another 40 boxes are nearing completion, Ellis has ramped up his purchases in Australia, with a view to competing for major prize money in the fastest growing racing jurisdiction in the world.

More information on the Magic Millions yearling purchases can be seen on the ‘Buy Yearlings & Share’ page https://www.teakauracing.com/


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