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'New Kid In Town' makes his mark in Melbourne

Westbury Stud only owned Yuleda for two years, but it was long enough to breed a black type winner from her.

Yuleda's son New Kid In Town became the latest stakeswinner bred by the Karaka-based stud of multimillionaire Eric Watson when he won the $A200,000 Andrew Ramsden Stakes (3200m) at Sandown in Melbourne on Saturday. He also became another stakeswinner for Westbury's most reliable stallion Faltaat, who like Volksraad emerged as a quality sire after starting at a modest service fee.

Westbury Stud manager Russell Warwick said Yuleda was already at the farm when it was decided to buy the mare. "Her owners were from Perth and she had been on the farm for about 18 months," Warwick said.

"They had asked us what sire she should visit and we had suggested Faltaat because we liked the bloodlines, and they agreed to do it. Shortly afterwards they decided to sell her. We sent her to the Karaka broodmare sale in 2001 and we bought her ourselves for about $20,000 in foal to Faltaat."

Yuleda was a good performer herself in Western Australia, winning at listed level and running second at group two level. Her half-brother Bold Sea won twice at listed level and was placed second in the Gloaming Stakes (Gr 2-1900m) in Sydney, while her second dam Jocasta won the Nivea Stakes (Gr 3-1200m) at Avondale as a juvenile. Jocasta herself was a handy producer, and her daughter Princess Jocinda was the dam of dual group one winner Bawalaksana and the group three winner Damaschino.

When Yuleda was served in 2000 Faltaat had begun to make a mark at stud. He had arrived with little fanfare in 1996, standing at a $5000 service fee. He was well-bred, by Mr Prospector from the Breeders' Cup winning filly Epitome, and had been champion sprinter in the United Arab Emirates. However, New Zealand breeders at the time didn't know how highly to rate the UAE form, and as a result he served just 17 mares in his first season.

However, by the time Faltaat served Yuleda his first crop had raced as juveniles and he already had a group one placegetter in Ellerslie Sires' Produce Stakes runner-up Hey Pronto, whose efforts helped persuade Warwick that Faltaat was the right sire for Yuleda.

"Hey Pronto was from One Pound Sterling's family, and this mare was by One Pound Sterling," Warwick recalled. "I also thought there were some quite good duplications in her distaff family as well when combined with Faltaat so we went to him."

The yearling that Yuleda produced made it to the sales series in 2003, selling to Barron Bloodstock for $20,000. He was first named Virtuosity and went to Invercargill to top harness racing trainer Barry Purdon's foreman Tony Darren before being bought by syndicator Terry Henderson, one of the owners of outstanding 1990s stayer Doriemus.

Like Doriemus, New Kid In Town went to the stable of Lee Freedman. He took time to develop but won the Warrnambool Cup (2350m) in May last year before suffering a life-threatening colic attack. He survived that but couldn't race for another 11 months. This year, however, he has done well on a light preparation, running a close sixth to Gallic in the Sydney Cup (Gr 1-3200m) before his victory on a suitable wet track in the Andrew Ramsden Stakes on Saturday.

It was enough to make Henderson think about aiming the horse at the Melbourne Cup next year. Though he realises there is a major class gap to bridge, Henderson said he would aim the horse at the Geelong Cup (2400m) in October and if he happened to go well he would look at the Melbourne Cup.

Yuleda produced only one more foal for Westbury, a filly by Zerpour, and was put in foal to another Westbury sire Kilimanjaro before being sold.

"We were looking to cut back the number of mares we had and focus more on quality. She was 18 or 19 at the time so we decided to sell her," Warwick said.

New Kid In Town's triumph was the first of two winners at Sandown for Faltaat, whose four-year-old daughter Bellini Rose won the $A75,000 Saintly Handicap later in the day. It added to an already good season for Faltaat, which has seen his progeny win at group one level in New Zealand with Jurys Out in the Captain Cook Stakes and also perform well in Hong Kong.

"He's nearly 17 now but he's still going strong on the farm and his progeny have had a great year both here in New Zealand and in Hong Kong, and he's had his best-ever sales series."


- Alastair Bull