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Auckland Branch celebrates their members' success

It was a big weekend for the Auckland Branch of the NZTBA as they held their annual awards evening and stallion parade.

On Saturday evening around 130 guests attended the New Zealand Bloodstock Insurance sponsored event at Villa Maria Winery to celebrate the breeding achievements of the Auckland branch members.

Awards were given out for four group one winners, five group two winners and seven group three winners. Rising Romance the winner of Group One ATC Oaks, the Group Two ARC Royal Stakes, and the Listed Eagle Technology Stakes received a stunning Waterford Crystal trophy for her Group One performance and her breeders John and Victoria Carter of Carter Bloodstock Limited also received the Sybil Hayward trophy for Broodmare of the Year for her dam Post Romance. A Postponed (USA) mare, she has also left the Singaporean winner Lone Star.
One of the most popular winners on the night was Trish Dunell, who bred the Singapore Derby and Patron's Bowl winner Spalato (Elusive City[USA]– Ellington). A very humble Dunell told the audience of her delight at being in Singapore to witness the Derby win at Spalato's fourth only start, especially as he is really only bred to go a mile.

Through the deeds of Spalato, Xanadu, Famous Seamus to name just a few the former Haunui Farm based stallion Elusive City (Elusive Quality[USA] – Star of Paris[USA]) was awarded the Stallion Award for the most earnings and the most winners.

The New Zealand Oaks winner Miss Mossman (Mossman[AUS]- Dane Princess), bred by Gerry Harvey, was also honoured for her Group One win as was Albany Reunion (Fastnet Rock[AUS]-Secret Silence[AUS]) bred by Westbury Stud Limited when it was still owned by Eric Watson.
Eric Watson, now trading as Watson Bloodstock Limited, was awarded the much coveted Jane Bunbury Award for Breeder of the Year. He bred the Group One Easter Handicap winner Albany Reunion (Fastnet Rock[AUS]-Secret Silence[AUS]) the Group Two Matamata Breeders' Stakes winner

Lady Royale (Captain Rio[GB]-Cackles[AUS]) and the Listed Ryder Stakes winner Niki Piki Milo (Librettist[GB]- Joiya[AUS]).

The five Group One winners and their breeders honoured were: Floria (Savabeel[AUS]-Aria) bred by Richard Moore, Lady Royale bred by Watson Bloodstock Limited, Mosquito (Golan[IRE]-Tiger Moth) bred by Dr Jonathan Sprague, Sir Andrew (Sir Percy[GB]-Biennale[AUS]) bred by Alan Galbraith, and Vilanova (Commands[AUS]- Valpolicella) bred by Haunui Bloodstock Limited, Frantic Bloodstock Limited, and G Cranny.

The group three winners and their breeders were: Annie Higgins (O'Reilly – Diva Belle) bred by Marie Leicester, Artic Wolf (Keeper[AUS] – Pyrate Princess) bred by Keith and the late Lynn Oddy, Instransigent (Refuse to Bend[IRE]-Risible) bred by Judge John Clapham, Little Wonder (Volksraad[IRE]- Shortblackmini) bred by Frances Crimmins, Postmans Daughter (Postponed[USA]- Kinjabelle) bred by Don Walker, Rock Diva (Lucky Unicorn[AUS]-Bohemian Blues) bred by Vern and Margaret Trillo, Zennista (Zenno Rob Roy[JPN]-Zarnista) bred by John Berger and Zonza (Zabeel – Sonet) bred by Brendan and Jo Lindsay.

The final award for the evening was the New Zealand Bloodstock Insurance Award for Outstanding Contribution. This award is given to a person who has made an impact in our industry through years of dedication and service at many levels.

This award was introduced by the Auckland Branch in 2003 and it is not an award that is bestowed lightly. The winner this year was retiring NZTBA Office Manager Sally Cassels-Brown, who was the engine room for the Association for 28 years – more than half the Associati's lifetime. According to the citation her administrative skills were second to none along with her organisational skills, and attention to detail. She embraced new technology and took on new roles with aplomb all the while maintaining the grace, class and elegance.

She joins an elite eclectic list of recipients with the first being the incomparable Charles Roberts – a leader in the field of equine reproduction. The following year it was awarded to Richard Moore who through the Soliloquy family has achieved outstanding success as a breeder, followed by the late Jane McClintock- Bunbury, an avid supporter of our industry, and acclaimed pedigree analyst.

In 2006 Don McLaren was honoured for his contribution – the founder of BOMAC, one of the largest producers of veterinary products in the world, a successful breeder and former Chairman of the Auckland Racing Club and in 2007 it was John Clydesdale who was recognised for his services to the industry as a long standing member of the Auckland NZTBA Committee and the NZTBA Council and his fostering of relationships with the JBBA.

The next award winner was acclaimed stud master and racing administrator Ron Chitty and after that we broke with tradition a little and awarded it to the immortal Sunline. NZTBA Life Member and stud master Brian Mollett was the next to be honoured and we then waited four years before we found another worthy recipient and last year we gave the award to the former President of the NZTBA Peter Francis.
On Sunday the branch held their annual stallion parade and the weather gods smiled and produced a beautiful spring day. Around 130 people attended the parades at Haunui Farm and Westbury Stud conveniently located virtually next door to each other, and enjoyed a light lunch afterwards.
One lucky visitor Eamon Harte, won the lucky draw for a free service to either Super Easy, Postponed or Showcasing, and was so surprised he had no idea which of the three he would choose. He said he would consult his sister as it was her job to manage the family mares.

For many it was the first opportunity to see Haunui Farm's new boy on the block Ferlax (Pentire[GB]- Legs Akimbo[AUS]) who was paraded along with Iffraaj (GB) (Zafonic[USA]-Pastorale[GB]), Showcasing(GB)(Oasis Dream[GB]-Arabesque[GB] and Ego (E Dubai[USA-Buckling[AUS]).
While at Westbury they paraded all seven of their stallions, Reliable Man (IRE) (Dalakhani[IRE]- On Fair Stage[IRE]), Makfi (GB) (Dubawi[IRE]-Dhelaal[GB]), Redwood(GB)(High Chaparral[IRE]-Arum Lily[USA]), Red Giant (USA) (Giant's Causeway[USA]-Beyond the Sun[USA]), Swiss Ace (AUS) (Secret Savings[USA]-Rapid Serve[USA], Captain Rio (GB) (Pivotal[GB]-Beloved Visitor[GB], and Postponed(USA) (Summer Squall[USA]-Bridal Tea[USA]).

- Michelle Saba


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