Stonybreck Scintillating on Synthetic

Date: 26 Jul 2023

Stonybreck Scintillating on Synthetic


Backed as though unbeatable ($1.20), Stonybreck (3 g Tavistock - Fair Isle, by Fastnet Rock) produced a clinical victory in the $14,000 Pryde's Easifeed 3YO 1550 metres on 26 July at Cambridge (poly-track).

When winning in June on the poly-track at Awapuni, Stonybreck notched the 190th win this season for trainer Mark Walker. He was strong again when second on 7 July also at Awapuni, and his latest victory is the 198th in a record-breaking performance by the stable.

Ridden by Champion Jockey Michael McNab, who retains his crown this season, Stonybreck was immediately put in the race outside leader Branciforti (Belardo), took over as he wished at the 400m and drew clear to win easing down by four and three-quarter lengths.

It was another compelling victory by Stonybreck, while enhancing his record to four wins, two seconds, and third, from 10 starts.

“It was another great win by a horse that Dave (Ellis) bought cheaply and he's established a really good record,” Walker said.

“He's relaxing so much better now in his races, showing versatility to win on both turf and the poly-tracks and he's a horse that should keep improving as a four and five-year-old.”

Stonybreck was purchased for $20,000 by Te Akau principal David Ellis CNZM, from the draft of Pencarrow Stud, at the 2021 Karaka Book 1 Sale, and owned by Te Akau Northern Scotland Racing Partnership (Mgr: Karyn Fenton-Ellis MNZM).

“He was a bargain from a really good Pencarrow Stud family of Sir Peter Vela, and beautifully bred,” Ellis said. 

“We were actually so taken with him that I went back the following year, in 2022, and bought his half-sister by the Triple Crown winner Justify. 

“We had a good look at her and really liked what we saw. She cost a bit more, $190,000, but from a family with deep black type pedigree and quality. She's named Star of Justice, recorded a strong trials' win in April at Avondale, and preparing to trial again on 1 August at Te Rapa.”

By Tavistock (Montjeu), a noted sire of international Derby winners that added terrific quality to the New Zealand stallion ranks, Stonybreck is from a mare by Champion Sire Fastnet Rock (Danehill) who won over 1600 metres in Australia.

Stonybreck has a mouth-watering dam line: grand-dam Miss Scarlatti (Stravinsky) won a Listed race and also strung together second placed finishes in the Norman Robinson (Gr. 3, 2000m), Wakefield Stakes (Gr. 2, 2000m), and VRC Oaks (Gr. 1, 2500m) in the space of three starts as a three-year-old.

Her half-sister, Abidewithme (Redoute's Choice), was trained by Te Akau to record nine wins, including the Travis Stakes (Gr. 2, 2000m), Tauranga Stakes (Gr. 2, 1600m), and was three times Group One placed. 

Third dam Crimson (Zabeel), an impressive winner and Third Top Filly on the NZ 3YO Free Handicaps, was trained by Jim Gibbs before transferring to Bart Cummings during the latter stages of her career. 

Crimson went on to produce outstanding form through the spring, winning the Waikato Guineas (Gr. 3, 1600m) and finishing second in the Avondale Guineas (Gr. 2, 2000m), before victory in the Grosvenor Championship Stakes (Gr. 2, 2100m) at Ellerslie. 

Crimson left winners of fourteen races, while her dam, Bourbon Lassie (Mellay) also produced the stallion Omnicorp (Grosvenor).

It has been a remarkable comeback to New Zealand racing for Mark Walker. He won five training premierships for Te Akau before setting up stables for them in 2011 at Kranji Racecourse in Singapore, where he added another four Champion Trainer titles, including the record (87) in 2017. 

Resuming as Te Akau trainer in April 2022, he set a national record for wins in a season when Fellini (Belardo) won in April at Pukekohe, to surpass the domestic record (160) set previously by Te Akau trainer Jamie Richards in 2020/21, achieved his 100th domestic stakes success when Aromatic (Sacred Falls) won the Counties Cup (Gr. 2, 2100m) last November, and notched the fastest 100 when Pure Imagination (Darci Brahma) won on 13 January at Tauranga.

Stonybreck was strapped by Loka Manu.


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