Saturday’s victory by Aretha in the Gr.2 J Swap Contractors Ltd Matamata Breeders’ Stakes (1200m) brought double delight for well-known Cambridge-based breeding operation Windsor Park Stud.
The victory carried dual significance for Windsor Park as the Murray Baker & Andrew Forsman-trained filly became both the first Southern Hemisphere winner for shuttle stallion, Charm Spirit as well as his first at stakes level in this part of the world.
Aretha is from the first New Zealand crop of the son of Invincible Spirit, who has enjoyed a dream start to his stud career in the Northern Hemisphere where he was rated the equal-leading European first crop sire in 2018.
The victory came just hours after another Windsor Park stallion, Shamexpress produced his third stakes winner when unheralded filly Embrace Me took out the Gr.3 Typhoon Tracy Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Friday night.
“It was certainly a magic 24 hours and hugely exciting for us,” Windsor Park Stud Manager Rodney Schick said.
“We have a really great bunch of young stallions who are just starting to kick goals so there is plenty to look forward to.
“I think what was most satisfying with Aretha winning was that her owner, Greg McCarthy, has been a long-time client of the Stud, so to be able to secure a real milestone for Charm Spirit with Greg being involved is just great.”
Schick believes the win by Aretha is just another component to the momentum that Charm Spirit has built up since commencing duties at Windsor Park.
“He really has had a great start with good books of mares and some great results at the sales,” he said.
“He was very well supported again this year with another solid book while his results at Karaka were very pleasing.
“Importantly he seems to be well sought after by the Australian market.
“He had a sensational result at the Gold Coast yearling sale where he averaged $237,000.
“Australia is such a vital market for our Industry that we need to be kicking goals there so that type of result is just fantastic.
“Combine that with the win by Embrace Me, which just backs up what Shamexpress has been doing to date and it was a very big weekend for us.” – NZ Racing Desk