Behind the Breeds - whos' catching the eye? #2
by Don Rae
Behind The Breeds is a new series where breeding enthusiast Don Rae takes a deep dive into the pedigree of some of today's trotters and pacers. In today's second edition he casts his eye on North Canterbury, and the Dave Iremonger-trained Skara Brae and Robbie Close's Post Painter, which he trains and drives.
Skara Brae is a three year old filly by Sky Major from the Sands A Flyin mare Monaveen.
It's worthwhile first touching briefly on Sands A Flyin as a broodmare influence. His mares have left the winners of 438 races, 98% of them pacers, for nearly $4.5m in stakes won in New Zealand. He has three in under 1.50, the Rock n Roll Heaven sired Alpha Rock (1.49.5 USA), the Bettor's Delight gelding Bright Diamond (1.49.8 USA) and the Christian Cullen gelding Mr Hasani (1.49.8 USA) and eight horses who have ten or more victories. Captain Peacock with 12 wins and $283,934 in stakes sits atop that money list of Sands A Flyin sired mares' progeny with other horses like Art Union (16 wins), Empyrean (10 wins), Dance Time (13:wins) and Check In also standing out.
Monaveen, out of Stronechrubie by Soky"s Atom, out of Gentility by Lordship out of Strathmea by El Patron from Classiebawn, has left 9 live foals for the late Mike Stratford, of whom five have been winners with Penscroft (4 wins) the best of them by number of wins. Penscroft has also left the likes of Pat Campbell (9 wins) and Classie Linc (8 wins).
Going back to Classiebawn, she was a very nice filly for Brian O'Carroll. Out of Heathmount by Garrison Hanover from Lady Ardee by Grattan Loyal out of Princess Ardee by Rey de Oro this has been another great producing family.
Princess Ardee left just two foals, both to Grattan Loyal, the unraced Lady Ardee and the good trotter Mountain Range (1944) who won eight races and placed second to Indomitable in the 1952 Rowe Cup for driver Noel Berkett.
Lady Ardee left 10 live foals with six winners of whom Heathmount with six wins being the best. Heathmount was a prolific breeder leaving 12 live foals with Classiebawn (10 wins), Montrose, Blair Logie. (7 wins) and Kimberly Kid (5 wins) leading the way in the win count. Classiebawn's best win was undoubtedly her triumph in the 1978 Sixth Standardbred Breeders' Stakes at 9/1 defeating a hot field of top mares that included In Or Out, Bronze Queen, Helen of Tara, Kara Kara and Miss Pert. Montrose was a good breeder too leaving the likes of Blairgowrie (7 wins), Rose Ayr (6 wins), Barrosa (4 wins) and some other minor winners.
Summarising, this has been a very nice and prolific family, breeding plenty of winners with no doubt more to come given the number of mares still breeding who have Princess Ardee in their pedigree.
The day's second qualifier was the Terror To Love 2yo g Post Painter out the Badlands Hanover mare Hanover Glory out of Quest For Glory by Clever Innocence from the two-win horse Averil's Dream by Lumber Dream from Bonnie Averil by U Scott from the Dillon Hall mare Lady Averil. From five live foals Lady Averil left three winners of which Val Averil (9 wins) was the best. She was good enough to contest if not win two Auckland Cups, two Franklin Cups and an Easter Cup.
The two win Morris Eden mare Moon Averil managed to leave 11 live foals of whom 9 were fillies. The best was Carmen Averil (7 wins, 3rd in 1975 North Island Breeders' Stakes behind Frosty Lea and Cassel).
However it was the unraced Bonnie Averil who proved to be a broodmare gem. She left True Averil to Fallacy and he announced himself as a 4yo in 1970 when finishing 4th in the New Brighton Cup behind Intrepid (1965), Manaroa and Jacquinot Bay. As a 5yo he managed placings in the 1970 Kaikoura Cup (2nd), 1970 New Zealand Cup (4th) and 1971 Easter Cup (2nd) until reaching the apogee of his career in 1972 by winning the New Zealand Cup from Radiant Globe, Intrepid and the Australian visitor Bay Foyle.
All told True Averil raced 81 times for 15 wins, 9 seconds and 11 thirds for $52,180 and a 4yo mark of 1.58.8 (which was very slick in 1970). He also sired the winners of 118 races with Tarlad (9 wins), Uncle Andrew (9 wins) and Alec Peterson (8 wins) leading the way. His mares did okay too leaving 102 New Zealand bred winners with 16 in 2.00, Ikawai Master (1.54.4 USA) being the fastest.
Averil's Dream was another from Bonnie Averil. She won four times and left five winners with the best of them being the highly talented free-legged pacer Hondo's Dream (8 wins) and the seven-win mare Out To Dream.
Averil's Dream also left Quest For Glory who was an outstanding broodmare leaving the unbeaten New Age Man (13 starts 13 wins for Laurence Hanrahan) and the equally talented Extraordinaire (5 wins from 7 starts) who might have been anything but for injury. Quest For Glory also left Averil's Atom who left three very good winners; Averil's Quest (9 wins), Shezaball (8 wins) and Fizzi Lizzi (8 wins). Shezaball has three very decent horses currently competing: Play Philly (5 wins, 1.56.6 S*, Micaitlen Denario (2 wins, 1.58.2 S* and the talented juvenile Cold Chisel (2 wins from 4 starts, 1.57.7 S*).
Light Averil was yet another to leave a good winner with Good Sport winning eight for trainer/driver Colin Holmes. He won the 1975 Franklin Cup beating Armbro Magic, Captain Harcourt and Jack Robinson and also managed second to Armbro Magic in the 1975 Thames Pacing Cup.
This is a very solid New Zealand breed, many who carry 'Averil', 'Denario' or "Shard' in their name, which has left a lot of winners over the years with the occasional high class animal appearing from time to time to whet the appetites of punters and breeders alike. After all isn't that what the breeding game is all about? Of course you hope first for a healthy, live mother and foal, then you hope for a winner and occasionally you may dare to dream of something even better!