Te Akau Monday Update

Date: 15 Jan 2024

David writes:

What an incredible week it was on the Gold Coast at the Magic Millions' sale. The team and I had a wonderful seven days, inspecting and buying magnificent yearlings for the stable.  We could not be more thrilled with the outstanding horses that will race from our trans-Tasman stables in the future!

Today I am spending the day going around the farm, have had a film crew here, and tomorrow we continue inspecting Karaka yearlings.

So the whirlwind month of January continues!

On Tuesday we will view the yearlings at Rich Hill Stud then Waikato Stud – approx. 103 yearlings in total.

Wednesday has Brighthill, Cambridge and Pencarrow Studs – around 70 yearlings - on the agenda. 

Thursday we will be working through the drafts of Windsor Park, Riversley and Curraghmore Stud – approx.90 yearlings. While on Friday we travel to Carlaw Park, Landsdowne Park, Phoenix Park, Woburn and Kaha Nui – 81 yearlings.

So as you can see, it is full steam ahead before the sale gets underway later this month - 28 January to be precise. 

This isn't however the beginning of our yearling inspections - I have already spent three days in December looking at the Karaka yearlings then on Tuesday 23 January I am back at Karaka looking at yearlings for five days before the sale starts on the Sunday - the day after the Karaka Millions' race meeting.

If you have never been to the Karaka sale, do come and have a look – you will be surprised with how much you will enjoy it. The Te Akau team will warmly welcome and make you feel completely part of it all.  

If you can't attend in person, make sure you catch the TV or online coverage, it is always superb 'theatre' - people tell me they just love watching the selling action.  If a yearling catches your eye and you would like a share in a horse that we buy - call me anytime on +64 21 925 151.

Te Akau Racing owners had another wonderful week on the racecourse with winning doubles at Matamata and Tauranga, and then a winning inter-island double on Saturday, including a prestigious Group 1, at Trentham and Wingatui.

I was so thrilled for the owners of Quintessa to see her claim such a valuable Group 1. The $500,000 Levin Classic is a race that Te Akau has had so much success in!  

We have won this race five times in the past eight years, including the last three years in a row - Quintessa follows in the footsteps of Romancing the Moon (last year) and Imperatriz (a first four for Te Akau). Our previous winners in that eight years being the 'boys' Age of Fire and Hall of Fame.

I purchased this Shamus Award filly at Karaka for $170,000 and while she wasn't quite the last horse to sell in her year, she certainly was amongst them.  It's like we always say, last is definitely not least. 

It's a fun ownership team with long-time owners who have also been involved in other Group 1 horses with us like Costa Viva, Entriviere and Imperatriz, and new owners such as Stacey Jones, the rugby league legend!  Linda Huddy, her highly regarded Australian breeder, retained a share in the filly, so the warmest congratulations to her and all of her owners.

Mark and Sam have done a great job training this filly and wasn’t she beautifully ridden by Opie? Gee he is a world class rider - no wonder he currently has a strike rate of 3.5! If you added his Australian record this season, it would likely be even lower.  

While I was away at the Gold Coast for seven days, I was quite surprised how much the farm had dried up, but the good news is that we have 25 mls of rain forecast for tomorrow night.

This week we have four units of steers off to Greenlea. Each unit carries 40 steers so that is 160 going. We are having another lamb draft, and I would like to think we will get about 400 away. The average weight of steers killed this season is 362kgs and the lambs are averaging about 17kgs.

Wasn't it It great to see racing return to Ellerslie on Sunday!  Huge kudos to CEO Paul Wilcox and his ATR Board and team - you've done it!! We are all so looking forward to the Karaka Millions evening in 12 days.

Shares in our yearlings from Magic Millions are selling really quickly. Our colt syndicate is already 70% sold with lots of people interested. I think it will be completely sold in a couple of days! One of the reasons is the huge prize money available in Australia with a A$1 million race on average every 3.8 days. Of course New Zealand's prize money is also heading in the right direction - how good for Quintessa's owners for example to see her win a $500,000 race in 2024, a huge increase!

So it's a great time to be involved - and with Te Akau now having stables in the North and South Islands of New Zealand, and now in Victoria, Australia - we look forward to making our owners' dreams of success continue to come true!

Have a great week and ... GO THE TANGERINE!

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