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Mydiamond Bracelet a Christmas present for Mark Corcoran

Part owners Steve Cole and Michelle Saba yell encouragement - Photo Trish Dunell
Part owners Steve Cole and Michelle Saba yell encouragement

Photo Trish Dunell

Last Saturday Mark Corcoran had tuned into watch the listed Ag and Turf Sprint race from Te Rapa as a mare he bred, Mydiamond Bracelet (Al Akbar – Plain Jill), was a contender. When she hit the front with 300 metres to go he started to get really excited, then his digital reception dropped out and he missed the end of the race.

Meanwhile as a part-owner of the said horse I was at Te Rapa with three other syndicate members yelling encouragement and hoping the fast finishing Kaptain Kirkup wouldn't run her down.

It was a half head margin and whilst I was confident she had won, her trainer Graham Richardson wasn't quite as optimistic. Once the judge's call was made we were euphoric and fortunately for Mark Corcoran, a couple of quick phone calls assured him of the victory.

The feeling of winning a stakes race is quite surreal. After all the anticipation and planning to get to the race, followed by the pre-race nerves, to see the win actually unfold is quite unbelievable. The adrenalin rush is amazing and you almost have to pinch yourself to make sure it did happen.

A couple of days after the race I caught up with Mark Corcoran to congratulate him on breeding another stakes winner.

"I was wrapt when I saw the replay, she certainly dug deep. I rang Richie (Graham Richardson) and he thinks she will be even better in the autumn. I am thrilled and now I have decided that I will definitely keep her half sister by Thano(ARG)," he said.

Mydiamond Bracelet has now won four races from 17 starts and has weighed in on another seven occasions including a fourth in the listed Windsor Park Stud Rotorua Stakes. She is now five and this time in she is much bigger and stronger. She has always shown ability but needed time to mature.

She is the third foal of the Kinjite mare Plain Jill (ex Sweet'N'Vain), herself a winner of six races and a half sister to the listed winner Sweet Dancer who won nine races and Veil who won eight races. Sweet'N'Vain (Truly Vain[AUS]-Try Raffles[Aus]) won five races and is a half sister to the good winning stakes performers Rosenkavalier and Woodbury Lane.

"Plain Jill was the first broodmare I ever bought. I was running the farm for Anne (Corcoran) and the mare had come here to be served by Al Akbar(AUS) (Success Express[USA]-Gala Night [IRE]). She was a lovely mare to do anything with and I really liked her. She was from a good winning family and that is now coming through in her foals.

"Anyway we got her in foal, but unfortunately the owner passed away, and when she came up in the May sale I went up and purchased her for $1200. So she will always be a bit special to me. She's not overly big but she always throws a good sort.

"Her first foal by Al Akbar was Clement Elite. I sold him as a weanling and after he won two trials here he was on sold to Hong Kong where he won three races. Plain Bill, also by Al Akbar, was the second foal - he was slightly offset as a youngster so I kept him. He won a maiden race at Trentham at his first start by five lengths and he was also sold to Hong Kong where he was a winner just recently.

"Mydiamond Bracelet from the last crop of Al Akbar went to the Festival Sale and was sold for $26,000, so the mare was looking like a pretty good buy at $1200. The next foal was a filly by Faltaat(USA), and Mike Breslin bought her from the Festival sale for $15,000. Her name is Jilted and he assures me she won't let the mare down and she will have a 100% winners to starters very soon.

"The next foal was also a filly and she is named Defiant Rose, by Brillance(USA). I thought that she was Plain Jill's nicest foal. A couple of lovely ladies from Auckland paid $9,000 for her and I think she will also benefit from a little bit of time.

"Last year I took a Sandtrap(USA) colt to Karaka and sold him for $5,500. That shows how much the market has changed - I guess I was lucky I wasn't taking another filly. Plain Jill had a year off and I won't be taking the Thano filly to the sales, and now she is in foal to our new stallion Tobique(AUS) [Redoute's Choice – Mammoth]," he said.

After Richie had bought Mydiamond Bracelet he set about syndicating her amongst some of his clients and friends. Jim Clark, Jeremy Lawrence, Robert Pearson and Steve Cole (my husband) had all had horses with him before and each took a small percentage, leaving two quarter shares. One of which was given to me for my birthday, and the other went to Graham Andrew, a friend of ours who had been the under bidder on the yearling and had previously raced Veil.

On my birthday a couple of weeks after the sales Richie rang me to wish me happy birthday and ask me how I liked my present - the share in the filly – to which I replied in an effort to wind him up- not much really I wanted a diamond bracelet. From then on she became known affectionately as my diamond bracelet, and unbeknown to me that is what he registered her as.

Although the syndicate members have all raced many horses between them, this was their biggest win and we hope Richie is right and she will be a better horse in the autumn.

- Michelle Sabe