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Another Cup Winner from Bill Stewart's Family

Tinseltown - Picture by Trish Dunell

Picture by Trish Dunell

Wanganui veterinarian Bill Stewart the breeder of Tinseltown (Pentire – Tinsel) the winner of the group two DHL Counties Cup is very proud of that horse's achievements. "He's a good little horse and turning into a real cup specialist," he said of the seven-year-old gelding whose eight wins also include the group two Avondale Cup, group three Rotorua Cup, a Te Aroha Cup and the Virginia Turner Summer Cup. To that you can add a host of placings in cup races, such as the Brisbane Cup, and Caloundra Cup by the Mike Moroney and Andrew Clarken trained horse. A stalwart of the Wanganui/Taranaki branch of the NZTBA Bill Stewart is no stranger to breeding good horses, and is probably best known for his gallant group one winning mare Silver Chalice, who is still in his broodmare band of seven mares, and is a close relative of Tinseltown. In the late 50's his father Jack borrowed a mare called Stand In (Actor –Orange Pink) and bred a foal called Understudy by Globe of Light (Signal Light-Sun Petal). "She was a pretty useful racehorse without being a champion and won nine races, she was trained in Wanganui by Ernie Lewis. When she retired Dad started to breed from her and she produced 12 foals. "She clicked well with Silver Dream and produced two stakes winners My Cue and Lucky Dream, and that and another couple of good horses Dad raced sparked my interest in racing. It was Dad's horses that got me enthusiastic in racing and breeding so it was only right that I should carry on his families. "My interest in racing and animal welfare was influential in my decision to become a veterinarian. It's been wonderful being able to combine a career and an interest, but I must admit I am pretty busy right now. It's been surprisingly busy season here especially with Grangewilliam standing five stallions. Harking back to Understudy, she also left a full sister to My Cue and Lucky Dream called Argent who was unable to race as she was blind in one eye. Jack Stewart sent her to stud, and she too produced 12 foals, including the stakes winners Silver Chalice and Big Dermott.Silver Chalice(St Hilarion) who won eight races from 1200 metres to 2400 metres including the group one Thorndon Mile, the group two Hawkes Bay Cup, as well as the two-year-old group three events, the Taranaki Classic, and Wakefield Challenge Stakes. She was group one placed three times. Big Dermott (War Hawk II) was no slug either winning 13 races up 2900 metres, including the listed VATC Norman Robinson Stakes. "Tinsel (Jetball) a half sister to Silver Chalice and Big Dermott, didn't do anything on the racetrack, but I thought she would be worth breeding from, as she was by Jetball a Marscay line stallion and Pentire was clicking well with Star Kingdom line mares. At that stage he was standing at $6,500 and the resultant foal was Tinsektown. I sold him to Paul Moroney for $70,000 at the Karaka sales in 2005, three years later he paid the same for his full brother, but I think he will have to pay a little bit more for the full brother going to Karaka this year in Ascot Farm's draft."She didn't have a foal this year, but is back in foal to Pentire. Silver Chalice has also been to Pentire and produced the promising stayer Nightime Jockey as well as three other winners including Hermitage (Generous) and I have sent her to stud for the first time this season. She is under service to Elusive City."Another daughter of Silver Chalice, Tabernacle (Kaapstad) is also among my mares and she foaled a Pentire filly and is under service to Sir Percy, while Silver Chalice at age 20 has just left a lovely Thorn Park filly, I have retained the Postponed two-year-old filly out of Silver Chalice and will race her."The only other mare from this family in the Stewart broodmare band is Sable Crest a Jahafil half sister to Silver Chalice, she is has just left a High Chaparral colt and is going to Thorn Park. The remaining two mares owned by Bill that will be served this year are both descendants of Eulogy through the Pennon line, and were also passed on to him by his father Jack.Wollombi (Kaapstad-Belleroo) has visited Thewayyouare, she is out of a half sister to Adnamira (Lord Ballina)a Cuddle Stakes winner bred by the Stewarts, and Bounce de Ball (Jetball-Mundurra) who has dropped a Danfive colt and will return to that stallion.Baltis (Al Akbar) the first foal from this mare is a promising young horse currently racing for Bill."She is racing this weekend and she shows a bit of ability, from eight starts she has already won twice and been placed three times, she is part of my racing team that is only supposed to consist of one – but its growing, the other member is Tigris another daughter of Al Akbar, out of Adnamira.Looking at some of the horses bred by Bill over the years he tends to choose a stallion and support it with a number of mares, and when quizzed about his breeding philosophy stated he didn't really have one."I'm definitely not an advocate of line breeding, I'm more of a nicks follower, I do go for proven nicks followed by physical compatibility," he said.Well whether it's a philosophy or not, it seems to work as Bill Stewart is continuing to breed group winners and good racehorses.

- Michelle Saba


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