The weather may have prevented the actual running of the Gr.1 Fibre Fresh New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes at Te Aroha last Saturday, but it certainly didn’t stop the 200 or so NZTBA members on course from enjoying a day out.
None more so than Eva Heron who won a service to Rich Hill Stud’s exciting young stallion Proisir(AUS).
“We are absolutely over the moon, we have been big supporters of Proisir(AUS) since day one,” said Eva Heron, who along with her husband Cam are relative newcomers to the industry trading under the Highline Thoroughbreds banner.
“We have two mares in foal to him and have used him every year. We bred Plimico (ex Amiga Mia[AUS]) from his first crop and he won three races here before running third in the Gr.2 Waikato Guineas and being sold to Hong Kong.
A move to the Waikato in 2013 saw the Heron’s fulfil the ambition of breeding thoroughbreds by purchasing two broodmares at the National Weanling and Broodmare sale, they were Amiga Mia(AUS) and Nightingale Island, however they did not breed from them until 2016 sending Nightingale Island to Shocking(AUS) and Amiga Mia(AUS) to Proisir who they had purchased a share in.
The resulting foals being the aforementioned Plimco and Beavertown Boy who has won three races and was fourth in the listed St Leger last month.
‘I have always been in and around horses all my life, and used to go to the yearling sales with my mother,” said Heron.
“When we moved to the Waikato, we decided to follow our dream. I have always enjoyed the industry and thought I would try my hand in it, it’s such a great industry with some really neat people.
“This year we presented our sixth draft of yearlings at Karaka and had a superb sale especially in book two where we achieved two of the four top lots in the sale including a Proisir(AUS) colt out of All Can Party for $180,000.”
The Herons started off preparing yearlings for themselves but since they purchased their Peake Road (Cambridge) property a couple of years ago and developed it as purpose-built facility for agistment and yearling preparation they have started taking in outside clients.
They set out to breed good racehorses knowing that you need good stock on the ground to be successful, and using a breeding philosophy which combines both pedigree and type, matching up pedigrees with physical attributes to try and improve their mares and produce good types.
“It was a great day at Te Aroha,” enthused Heron, “it was just a shame about the group one race having to be postponed.
“It’s so important to have these types of days it gives everyone an opportunity to get around and talk about what’s going on.”
Waikato NZTBA Branch President Dave Duley was equally as enthusiastic.
“Apart from the group one race being cancelled it was a good day, everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves,” he said.
“We were very happy with the turn out considering the weather and it was great to see some new faces there.
“We lucky to have the Proisir(AUS) service kindly donated by Rich Hill Stud, and it was good to see our major sponsor Dave Smith from Dunstan and Fiber Fresh celebrating our 21-year partnership. This year we had a new caterer on board in Trio and the food was superb, and was washed down well with Soho wines, another of our great sponsors.”
Footnote: The Gr.1 Fiber Fresh New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes will be run at Te Rapa this Saturday (17th April).