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Making a Tough Job Look 'Super Easy' For Mike Ryan

Singaporean sensation Super Easy (Darci Brahma – Parfore) carries an "NZ" after his name as he was born here, but the story behind this horse is quite international.

He is raced in Singapore by the Joy N Happiness stable, and is trained by an Australian, Michael Freedman. He was bred in New Zealand, where his mother Parfore is a resident at Wentwood Grange. His breeder, another Australian, is Mike Ryan who currently lives in Abu Dhabi. A three-year-old son of Darci Brahma, Super Easy is the current star of Singaporean racing having won seven straight. According to his trainer he is currently having a short break before being prepared for the Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge which commences with the Singapore group three Singapore Three-Year-Old Print over 1200 metres on March 30. The series then goes to the Singapore group two Singapore Three-Year-Old Classic over 1400 metres on April 20 and a month later concludes with the Singapore group one Singapore Guineas over 1600 metres. To date Super Easy has not raced against his own age group, all his wins have been against the older horses, and he has yet to win beyond 1400 metres. In this age of modern technology his breeder Mike Ryan has no trouble following the deeds of Super Easy. "It's fairly easy to follow the racing from Asia and Australia here in Abu Dhabi and I have good people like Michael Wallace who was involved in the purchase of Super Easy keeping me informed of his progress with regular emails. He is a very exciting horse. Thanks to technology and working with good people I have no trouble keeping track of my bloodstock interests," he said from his home in Abu Dhabi. His bloodstock interests consist of a small portfolio of mares and racehorses, based in New Zealand and Australia, under the banner of Rytz Bloodstock. Ryan established Rytz Bloodstock about nine years ago basically as a breeding and racing business but by 2007 he had accumulated around 35-40 horses. "The business had got too big, so I made a decision to scale down and just breed quality horses mainly to sell, however we have ended up with the odd one to race. It was about the time of EI in Australia and that made it difficult as well and sort of took its toll on our operation. "Just before EI shut everything down I had made the decision to send Parfore – the dam of Super Easy - back to New Zealand specifically to be mated with Darci Brahma. I sent two mares over, and that decision has proved quite fortuitous.

"I liked Darci Brahma as a racehorse, it's a pretty gutsy horse that can come to Australia and win a group one as a two-year-old, and I really liked his pedigree. I think if Super Easy can go on and win a group one in Singapore and then race outside Singapore he could be a stallion prospect himself and that would be great for Darci Brahma then to become a sire of sires." Ryan acquired Parfore in 2004 when she was purchased by Paul Willetts on his behalf for $30,000 from the Mixed Broodmare Sale. "All credit to Paul it was his decision to buy the mare – he saw the potential in the family – she was in foal to Faltaat at the time but all the subsequent matings have been my decision. And just to give the mare a chance Paul went back the following January and bought the Generous yearling out of the mare for me for $20,000." The Generous yearling is Our Lukas who has now won 12 races including five listed races. He has won the Ipswich Cup twice along with the Seymour Cup, the Brisbane Handicap and the Strawberry Road Handicap. Ryan who named the horse after his young son Lukas ( now six) raced Our Lukas originally in Melbourne out of Peter Moody's stable, but on sold him to Queensland clients of Robbie Heathcote's and that is where the horse has found his forte. A winner of one race Parfore is by Gold Brose out of the stakes winning Twig Moss(FR) mare Classy Twiggy (AUS) and shortly after the acquisition the family also produced the champion two-year-old Il Quello Veloce (Captain Rio [GB]- Nishaani). Nishaani is an unraced full sister to Parfore and she has also left two winning siblings to Il Quello Veloce in Captain Bro and Another Superior. "The Faltaat mating produced a small colt foal, quite late in the season, she always seems to go about two to three weeks over, and we tried to mate her with Montjeu before he went back but she missed. The Faltaat turned out to be quite a handy horse in Our Boy Lukas who has won four races and over $100,000 in Victoria. "Stravinsky (USA) was running hot and in demand so her next mating was to him and she came to Australia in foal with that mating. She produced a filly which was sold to Patinack Farm at the Magic Millions for $150,000. That filly raced as Frustrating and won two races, she is now in foal to Casino Prince(AUS). "I had seen Dubawi win a race at Newmarket and thought he was a magnificent looking horse; I hoped that he would come to stud down here, so when he did I sent Parfore to him. That foal is Tiger Tees who has won six from nine out of Joe Pride's stable in Sydney. I sold him privately and have retained a share in him; he is being set for some big races at the Brisbane Carnival this winter." It was while in foal to Dubawi that Parfore returned to New Zealand to be mated with Darci Brahma, she returned the following year to Australia in foal to Captain Rio carrying a three-quarter brother to Il Quello Veloce. Named Terravista he was also sold privately to some colleagues of Ryan's and has joined the Pride stable in Sydney as well. Following that foal Parfore returned to Dubawi and produced another colt, a yearling now he has also been sold privately to some of the partners of Tiger Tees and will join his siblings at Joe Pride's. Parfore returned to Wentwood Grange in May last year, and is safely in foal to Zabeel. "I am hoping for a filly as I would love a Zabeel mare, Parfore has already produced two fillies the first was a full sister to Our Lukas by Generous(GB) Ininthree a winner of two races and served this season by Darci Brahma, the other is Frustrating. Her last three foals have been colts so she must be due to produce a filly. "Now that she is getting older it is quite important that I try and get a filly from this family. Hopefully nature will be kind to me after all Zabeel is the best stallion in New Zealand so regardless of the result as a colt would be just as good. Parfore will probably then return to Darci Brahma." Ryan has six mares in the Rytz Bloodstock portfolio at the moment, most of them younger than Parfore and they include the New Zealand bred mares. La Ravisante an O'Reilly mare out of Mer du Sud (IRE) a Bluebird (USA) mare and a half sister to the Hong Kong Mile winner The Duke, who is in foal to Rothesay, and La Mouette.She is a winning Montjeu(IRE) mare out of Rune a sister to the multiple group one winner and champion sire Sky Chase. La Mouette has a Not A Single Doubt (AUS) filly in the forthcoming Sydney Easter sales. "La Mouette comes from one of those good old solid New Zealand families and Montjeu is becoming somewhat of a sensation as a broodmare sire so I am quite happy to have her in my broodmare band." "At this point in time I am happy to breed to sell, and if I don't take horses to the sale I am fortunate enough to have a good group of about seven or eight people who are successful businessmen who are not interested in breeding horses but who are happy to buy from me and to date they have had a bit of success." Ryan developed his interest in horses through his father who had a interest in harness racing horses. "I got involved in the stables after school when I was about 15 or so, but I decided to stick with school and join the corporate world. Harness racing was in rapid decline in those days so I switched my interest to thoroughbreds and became interested in pedigrees. "I continued to follow horses throughout my business career and travelled and lived overseas a lot, and that makes you appreciate just how good the racing is in Australia and New Zealand, its right up there with the best in the world. Even now living in Abu Dhabi I have a bit to do with racing in Dubai I still think the racing in Australasia rates. "My wife Christine whom I met later in life loves horses as well and is an avid follower of racing she is also a very competent rider. It's very much part of our family life with the horses being named after our son Lukas. "Christine has a senior role working for the Crown Prince here in Abu Dhabi, that is primarily why we are based here. I still undertake some consulting work and manage high end brands but I am always around to spend time with Lukas if Christine has to go way. We have been here for three years now it's a very nice lifestyle we live right on the beach, we can follow the racing from both hemisphere's here, and we are strategically placed so we can pop over to Dubai or Europe to go racing, and maybe even down to Singapore to follow Super Easy."

- Michelle Saba