Te Akau Tuesday Update

Date: 5 Dec 2023

David writes:

I arrived home at Te Akau Stud on Sunday after two weeks away and immediately went around the farm. Two weeks ago I was at Karaka for the Ready to Run Sale then I travelled to Sydney for the week to inspect yearlings that are entered in the Magic Millions' Sale in January on the Gold Coast - the same sale I purchased Imperatriz from.

Stud farms we visited included: Baramul, Coolmore, Widden, Bhima, Segenhoe, Ridgmont, Yarraman Park, Vinery, Kia Ora, Sledmere, and Cressfield.

There were two real highlights of the week - firstly seeing yearlings by Xtravagant and Cool Aza Beel at Newhaven Park. I purchased both colts as yearlings themselves, so it is great to follow the next chapter of their careers.

Xtravagant was Champion 3YO of the Year and a dual Group 1 winner and has left some very talented progeny already. Cool Aza Beel won the Karaka Million and the Group 1 Sistema Stakes as a two year old, which saw him voted Champion 2YO of the Year for his season. Like Xtravagant, he too was sold to Newhaven's John and Charles Kelly. The yearlings by Cool Aza Beel were simply outstanding and he is a great chance to be a very successful stallion.

Another really enjoyable moment happened while I was inspecting yearlings at Coolmore Stud - I was able to inspect our nine-time Group 1 winner Avantage and her I am Invincible filly foal, and she is back in foal to I am Invincible. She has a magnificent Wootton Bassett yearling in the sale.

You can see Viva (as we knew Avantage) and her filly foal in the main picture above.

The first thing I did when I arrive home was to inspect the Ready to Run horses that we bought in late November. The five are relaxing at Te Akau Stud before they head in to the stable shortly for the very first time. I was just so thrilled with the quality of our purchases! There are only a couple of shares left in tw0 horses - remember the record we have with the last to sell!

The Vanbrugh gelding cost $120,000 and the Ace High colt cost $90,000 - both were outstanding value for money, very good buying. These two lads will be ready to race in the New Year, likely around February all going well and are both absolute stand outs!

Both these two horses breezed up exceptionally well and have really good pedigrees and we can’t wait to see them join our stable team who will get to know them inside out, and plan their next steps.

What exciting news I have read from Daniel O’Sullivan. He is a leading form analyst and professional punter who is rated as one of the best analytical judges in the world due to his ability to balance the art and science of race analysis with unique data insights. His opinions are hugely respected and highly sought after across the industry internationally.

Daniel has rated the top 10 horses in Australia with ratings of 103.4 – 108. You might be able to use which horse he has on top - now you understand why we are all so excited to read this - it's Imperatriz! Attached is the list for your interest.

We also had another good day at Te Rapa on Saturday, winning the 2YO with Maracatu, with Sister Ping running an eye-catching third. The very next race on the programme saw an unbelievable effort by Freeze Frame to get up and win from a seemingly impossible position - it was a performance that really had to be seen to be believed! He obviously has a very big future.

When I bought Freeze Frame at the Karaka sale for $80,000 from the draft of Rich Hill, I was ably assisted by my bid assistant Hunter Castles. He is a very capable young man who has racing in his blood and has a bright future whatever he turns his mind to.

Saturday's two wins continue a terrific season for our New Zealand training team of Mark Walker & Sam Bergerson - Te Akau is again on top for wins, stakes' wins and prize money won for our owners:

While I was away in Sydney we had great rain at the farm with 28mls at Te Akau Stud. The grass growth is just amazing and the stock is absolutely thriving. We are having our second draft of lambs next week and they have done very well in the last month since they were weaned. 

The grass that the cattle have in front of them is really top class and they are putting on 2kgs a day at present. We are still selling two units a week (80 steers) currently. 

The rain has also been terrific for the Waipa track where we have a big team of horses trialling today and we are really looking forward to our busiest time of the year which is upon us.

Best of luck to all our owners with runners this week!

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