Sunline ScholarshipBreeders' BulletinCheveley Park StudCoolmoreIrish National StudScholarshipTaylor MadeBreeders BulletinBruce SladeBruce's BlogBulletinMatt's BlogMatthew ScownMatt ScownDavid Morris BlogJamie RichardsRobert DennisBevan SmithBevan's BlogHolly RossHolly's BlogJamie's BlogLance Forbes BlogRobert's BlogBenji KingBenji's BlogBrighthill FarmCameron Ring BlogDanielle Southey BlogHannah MeeNZB Pearl SeriesTrelawney StudDylan TreweekDylan's BlogHannah's BlogHaunui FarmIffraajSavabeelAide MemoireBelardoCameron RingNewmarketPer IncantoRaise The FlagRich HillRichard WrightShamexpressShowcasingSir Patrick HoganThe Oaks StudWellfield LodgeWhite Robe LodgeAuckland Breeder AwardsBLOODSTOCK TAXATIONCEO BlogChief Executive's BlogCoolmore IrelandDalgharFrankelGerry HarveyGingernutsHall of FameHighden ParkInglewood StudKaraka MillionLance ForbesLisa LattaLittle Avondale StudMark ChittyMelody BelleNick KingPattern CommitteePinsRangitikei Gold CupTe AkauVanbrughWaikato Stallion WeekendWentwood GrangeWindsor Park Stud2015/16 Handicaps2017 Waikato Stallion ParadeACC ForumACC LEVIESAdvantageAerovelocityAl Basti EquiworldAlamosaAlan GrovesAlan WindleAllan SharrockAllureAlphastarAndrew SeabrookAnne-Marie KingArthur AvisAternatinAuckland Stallion ParadeAuckland Stallion Parade 2017Bansha House StablesBeauty GenerationBelle familyBernard SaundryBeyond the BarriersBonnevalBonniegirlBostonianBoticaBradbury ParkBRANCH CAPITATIONBreeder Of The Year 2016Breeders Bulletin Winter 2016Breeders' Bulletin Autumn 2017Breeders' Bulletin Summer 2016/17Brian CollinsBroodmare Of The Year 2016Bruce HarveyBryerley ParkBuckinghamCambridge StudCancer SocietyCareers DayCarol MarshallCathay PacificCelia CrawshawCharmontCheveley ParkChiantiChocanteChris GraceChristopher GraceColdplayCoolmore AmericaCouleeCylinder BeachDan MyersDavid ArcherDavid EllisDavid MillerDavid WalshDe GruchyDeloitte ReportDennis BrothersDijon BleuDolcettoDormello StudDr Frances PeatEducationElusive BoxersEmblemEminentEnglandEpisode OneEquibreed Seminar 28th AugustEquifibreEquine Property OwnersEtah JamesExplosive BreedingFalkirkFanaticFasig-TiptonFastrack Breeder ProfileFasttrackFasttrack Breeders ProfileFerlaxFive to MidnightFlemmington FarmFlying MontyFoalsFormidableFoster FoalFrank ConwayFree Handicaps 2016-17Galloping GerteGary WallaceGavelhouseGift Of PowerGilltown StudGoffsGordon CunninghamGore GuineasGraham de GruchyGrangewilliam StudGreg TomlinsonGus WigleyGuy LowryGypsy FairHard MerchandizeHe's Our RokkiiHEALTH & SAFETY ACTHealthy RiversHeniHiyaamHoney RiderHumidorI Am A StarIain RentonImposing LassImposinglyInfantryInside AgentIrelandIts Time For MagicJakkalberryJanine DunlopJeanette BroomeJezabeelJimmy ChouxJoan EganJohn BergerJohn FokerdJohn Messara Report Release Date 30 August 2018John ThompsonJohn WoodJomara BloodstockJon SnowKawiKay HoodKeanoKeenelandKeith and Faith Taylor Equine ScholarshipKick BackKiwi BredKoru ThoroughbredsKylin 500 ClubLa DiosaLasarlaLegless VeuveLet Her RipLibby BleakleyLightning StakesLincoln BlueLincoln FarmsLloch-Haven ThoroughbredsLloyd MonehanLondon ExpressLong Acres StudLorna MooreLuigi MuolloMakfiMakfi StakesMangaroa Flo JoMapperley StudMarch 2016Mare ReturnsMarie LeicesterMark LuptonMark TreweekMcQuadeMeeska MooskaMembersMembershipMichael MoranMichael O'KeefeMichael SheridanMichelle SabaMilan ParkMiss Three StarsMiss VistaMiss WilsonMontoyas SecretMonty RobertsNahkleNearco StudNew Zealand BloodstockNight's WatchNovara ParkNurse KitchenNZ Bred G1 WinnersNZ First season sires 2018NZ Racing StructureNZB InsuranceNZB South Island SaleNZERFNZRBNZTBA Breeders Bulletin Autumn 2018NZTBA OfficeNZTBA RestructureNZTBA Te Aroha Breeders DayNZTBA Waikato BranchNZTROF March 2017OctapussyOctasongOn The RocksOne One TwoOur AbbadeanOWNERS FEDERATIONPaul GollanPentirePerfect FitPeter NewsomPeter WalkerPhilamorPhill CataldoPlusvitalPour MoiPrefermentPRIMARY ITOPrince Of BrooklynProisirProisir FoalsProm QueenPucciniRace Fields LegislationRacing MinisterRageeseRaise You TenRavelston StudRaven DarkholmeRedwoodRemindRichard CollettRide To TimeRoad to RockRobin ArcherRobt DaweRock OnRodger VarianRodmor Trust Lecture SeriesRomancerSacred ElixirSaracinoSaratogaScott BaseSeabrookSeagramSean HawkinsSeason 5ShadwellShane KennedyShannon TaylorShockingSophie's ChoiceSouth Island Foster FoalSpanish WhisperSpecial MemoriesSpiethSpyglass Hill SyndicateStallion Parades 2016Stallion Register 2018Start WonderingStephen AutridgeSunlineSunset PassSuper EasySusan ArcherSweet LeaderSweynesseTarzinoTattersallsTattyboglerTavistockTe ArohaTe Aroha Breeders DayThe Bold OneThe InformantThe KingTivaciTivaci ShuttleTony PikeTrain The Trainer WorkshipTurn Me LooseUnderthemoonlightUnusual SuspectUpper CutVerdiVespaVicki PikeVolatile MixWaikato Regional Council ReportWaikato StudWait A SecWarwick JeffriesWayne PikeWell DoneWertherWestbury StudWhite Robe Lodge HandicapWho Shot ThebarmanWilliam FellWillie and Karen CalderWinstarWinston PetersWinxWTBAXpressionXpressmymindXtravagantYearnYogiZabeelZacintoZennistaZigwig

Onawe Miller flys the Southland flag

Onawe Miller is convinced that Southland is as good as anywhere in New Zealand to breed a horse.

Outstanding horsemen such as Bill Hazlett and the Dennis Brothers have proven the worth of the Southland breed over the years, and Miller added to her own commendable record on Saturday when Orange County earned his first black type win in the Sofitel Stakes (Listed-1400m) at Flemington.

Southland has an image for many New Zealanders of being cold and with inhospitable winters, but Miller says those are myths and that the region has a number of advantages.

"People think it's not the best but we have found it's a great place to rear horses," Miller says. "The yearlings have good bone, the pasture and soil is good, and we don't get a lot of the bugs that places up north get in summer."

New Zealand's history of thoroughbred breeding has shown that Southland, Canterbury, Manawatu, Wairarapa, Taranaki and Hawke's Bay have been just as capable of producing good horses as Waikato.

But with Waikato becoming the dominant region, Southlanders such as Miller who want to remain commercial often need to visit Waikato-based stallions. Orange County is by one of the best of them – Windsor Park Stud's stalwart Volksraad.

"On top of the service fee it costs us a couple of thousand at least for a mare to go there and back to be served, but we just build it in as one of our costs," she said.
"What I tend to do is to let the foal be born in Waikato and then weaned before it comes back to us. It seems to work well."

The Orange County story begins with Midmeadow Maid, a Kurdistan mare Miller's father Harold Day bought back in the mid-1960s.

From there he bred Meadow Bell, a Bellborough mare who Miller inherited in the 1970s, and she proved a gem in the broodmare paddock.

"We decided to send her straight away to Super Gray, who Garry Chittick brought out when he was still in Manawatu, because he was the first Nijinsky stallion in New Zealand and we all knew about his reputation. Her first three foals were by Super Gray," Miller said.

The second of those would be Super Dude, whose 15 wins included the Group 3 CJC Challenge Stakes and the listed Dunedin Guineas. The third was Ingres, Orange County's granddam.

Miller got a good idea that the line would continue to breed on when Super Dude's half-sister Winter White, by Sir Godfrey, produced the Dunedin Cup winner Sopherim and the Wyong Cup winner Ronzino.

Ingres, whose foals she bred in partnership with her daughter Petrena, was thus given a good chance and went to several good stallions, including twice to Kaapstad near the end of her life. To him she got Saffie, Orange County's dam.

Saffie is actually owned by Petrena, but as she has been developing her career as a top fashion designer (she's had shows at the past two NZ Fashion Weeks), she leased Saffie to her mother for a few years and she has done the family proud.

So far she's had four named foals, of which three have made it to the races. All have won.

First off the mark was Titan Happiness (by Mellifont), a winner of six in Singapore, and then came Ain't No Pussycat (by Felix The Cat), a winner over 1100m.
As they went through the ranks, Saffie foaled a Volksraad colt who would eventually become Orange County.

"All her colts have been good but he was especially lovely. He had a great head on him," Miller said.

Orange County was sold at Karaka to Melbourne trainer Brian Mayfield-Smith for $70,000, and so far he has more than paid his price back. He has now earned $A345,000, and Mayfield-Smith thinks there's plenty more to come.

His programme could even lead the gelding to become the first group one winner Miller has bred, as he is being aimed at races like the Toorak Handicap (G1-1600m) at Caulfield in October.

Miller says she still has about five or six mares on the farm, all from the Meadow Maid family. It's a good running family, and one which shows its ability right from the time the horses make it to the races.

"At least seven or eight horses, probably more, from the family have won their first starts on the racetrack, and Orange County was one of those," she said.
"But I won't bet on them. They cost enough to get ready for me to want to risk any more money betting."

- Alastair Bull


This product has been added to your cart