A determination to buy a special son of the Group One racehorse and successful sire that she bred, came to fruition for Henrietta, the Dowager Duchess of Bedford, at Karaka on Tuesday.
Montjeu colt Tavistock was bred at Bloomsbury Stud NZ back in 2005 and after being purchased out of the 2007 Select sale at Karaka by trainer Andrew Campbell, went on to win twice at Group One level in New Zealand before being sold to stand at Sir Patrick Hogan’s Cambridge Stud.
Success followed as Tavistock produced quality gallopers such as Hong Kong Horse of the Year, Werther, Group One winners Tarzino, Tavago, Volkstok’n’barrell and more recently Johnny Gets Angry and Toffee Tongue.
Following his untimely demise in 2019, the Duchess was determined to purchase a colt by her sentimental favourite that could race in England and set about achieving that desire at the National Yearling Sale this year.
Lot 487, a colt out of Zabeel mare La Belle Beel consigned by Hogan through the Woburn Farm draft became the desired target for the Duchess with representative Berri Schroder entrusted with the bidding duties.
After a sluggish start the action kicked in late in the piece as Schroder and trainer Roger James went head-to-head for the colt, with Schroder sealing the deal with a final bid of $440,000.
“It has been Henrietta’s dream to buy a Tavistock from Sir Patrick that could go to England to race to complete the circle for her,” Schroder said.
“If the planes are going, he will be sent over to the northern hemisphere in either June or July.
“While he will be six months older than his competition he will race in open races as a maiden as an autumn two-year-old.
“We looked at every Tavistock in the catalogue this year as we wanted to select the one that would be best suited to that plan and this one fits the bill.
“It was a great battle in the ring and I wasn’t confident we had him until the gavel went down.
“We had heard that there were at least four people on him and I think it was Roger James who was the underbidder.”
Schroder advised that no trainer had been selected to take the colt in England, with the horse set to return to Woburn Farm for the next stage of his preparation before undertaking his journey up north. – NZ Racing Desk