Tardina Stud - we will "continue to thrive"

A new era is underway at Tardina Stud. Following the death of iconic breeder, owner and veterinary surgeon Tony Parker in March it's now the next generation, led by daughter Faine, who's carrying on the family name. And that starts with six offerings at the NZB Standardbred Weanling Sales at Karaka on Thursday, May 25.

By Rob Courtney

When I rang Faine to talk about the family breeding operation, Auckland was in the middle of another weather bomb and 165mls of rain had fallen already that morning alone.

As a result of hurriedly getting the weanlings under cover and out of the weather, Faine was, by her own admission, feeling "like a drenched rat".

It's just another challenge to overcome in what has been a very busy time post the yearling sales in February. Then there was the passing of her father Tony Parker, who along with wife Anne had set up Tardina Stud nearly 50 years ago.

"I had spent 10 years in America managing a software company and made the decision to return home to the family farm at Mangatawhiri (150 acres + 75 acre run off) south of Auckland to share in the family horse breeding operation," Faine says.

"Dad in particular was an immense source of knowledge and I am sure his 'mentoring' has got us into a position where we can continue to thrive."

To say the Parkers (and Tardina Stud) have been successful breeders over a long period of time would not do justice to their bloodstock and their accomplishments on the race track. What a record they have with such names as Auckland Reactor, Chase Auckland, Hug The Wind, Hunka Hickling, Opoutama, The Parade, Miss Whiplash and Yagunnakissmeornot. They are million dollar performers, NZ record holders and Group 1 winners sitting amongst horse and broodmare of the year titles.

While it will largely be "business as usual" Tardina has departed from the norm this year by selecting six weanlings for the upcoming NZB Standardbred Sale at Karaka on May 25.

"There are 25 mares to foal down in the spring and so the family decided to enter the weanling sale this year for the first time with the deliberate intention of easing workload pressures later in the spring and summer months".

Even sister Melanie (residing in Oamaru) is doing her share with some of the Tardina Bloodstock sent south for further yearling preparation.

Interestingly, 11 of their mares are in the 20+ age bracket and are likely to be retired in the coming season.

Just last Thursday one of the Tardina bred/owned mares Sparkie won at Cambridge as an even money favourite for trainers Robert and Jenna Dunn. By Auckland Reactor (bred by Tardina) from Forgotten Dreams (4th generation broodmare bred by Tardina) she is now the winner of 3 from 18 starts. Robert Dunn has bought several of the Tardina yearlings in recent years.

So with NZB's support and after a visit by standardbred manager Cam Bray, six weanlings (3 colts and 3 fillies) have been selected to carry the Tardina banner into the Karaka sales complex next week.

After paying premium prices for stallion services, Faine is adamant the draft represents great value at this stage of their development and with Tardina stock doing particularly well in Australia, there are high hopes their weanling sale debut will be a successful one.

The Tardina Stud 2023 weanling draft is :

Lot 23 c. Downbytheseaside - Delicata
Lovely colt half brother to multiple Group 1 winner Auckland Reactor

Lot 41 f. Sweet Lou - Hearty Lass
Faultless example of a Sweet Lou package with plenty of bling

Lot 59 f. Downbytheseaside - Hi Ho Silver Linings
Half to multiple Group winners including Flying Ellie, dam won 7

Lot 77 c. Downbytheseaside - Karamea Dreamin
Half to to 6 winners including Saucy Dreams, 20 wins, 1.51.4 + $150k

Lot 96 c. Lazarus - Like A Dream
1st foal from half sister to The Parade, 22 wins + $426k, a real looka!

Lot 114 f. Lazarus - Opoutama
Only the 3rd foal from quality Somebeachsomewhere mare who won 7 + $120k

To see NZB Standardbred's national weanling sale catalogue click here



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