Top mare heading to North America
By Michael Guerin
One of the finds of the season has been sold to North America.
And that means last month’s group one Queen of Hearts winner Beyond Words will almost certainly be scratched from Addington on Friday night and not race here again.
The daughter of Art Major passed her vet examination on Wednesday and agent John Curtin is expecting money to arrive on Thursday to seal the deal that will see Beyond Words sold to United States-based owner Richard Poillucci, the man who raced former Kiwi-bred world champion Shartin.
“It is a big money sale but she will do a super job up there,” Curtin told HRNZ.
Beyond Words has been one of the stories of the harness racing season, emerging as an unheralded maiden on August 7 to win the hands of then co-trainer Mark Purdon before now likely ending her New Zealand career with five wins from nine starts including that Queen of Hearts over stablemate and subsequent Auckland Cup winner Amazing Dream.
That suggests she is a mare of rare talent and that didn’t surprise her co-trainers who always rated her highly but issues kept her away from the track until she was four.
Beyond Words was set to have her first start for new trainer Hayden Cullen on Friday night at Addington but providing the money turns up she will be scratched.
Owner and breeder Brian West admits he would have loved to keep Beyond Words but as a lifelong breeder he is being realistic.
“I am 70 this year and I have to look at the future,” says West of Studholme Bloodstock.
“I have had up to 100 mares here on the farm and I have been going through the process of re-homing some of them,” explains West.
“Some of them are mares I haven’t even bred from or even raced because I simply have to cut numbers down.
“I have got that down to around 60 mares here on the farm and I’d like to take that number down further to make it more manageable.
“After all, I am not getting any younger and some nights I am not finishing with the horse until after 9pm and it is bloody tiring.
“I am very proud of what she has achieved but if the sale goes through as expected then I hope she does a wonderful job for them up in the States.”
With Beyond Words to be sold and Stylish Memphis likely heading to New South Wales for the Ladyship Mile, Amazing Dream will be red hot to dominate the remaining mares races for the season.