Garry’s Corner – 1 February, 2019

Garry Chittick

Patience is a virtue possess it if you can. Found seldom in a woman and never in a man.  Not so, to be a breeder of elite racehorses requires enormous patience. Yes, we hit the headlines with the sale of an exceptional colt this week, $1.4m is not to be treated lightly.

We have never been in the game for the occasional headline but some time ago when still in the Manawatu we hit the headlines after the May Sale with the purchase of Star of the Night. 250k, when that amount would have purchased 4 Range Rovers, was enough to not only headlines in the racing publications it made national news on the sports section of the radio news. This was indeed unfortunate as Mary sitting at home had no idea of the folly I had just committed, she not only heard the news but so did many of her acquaintances, her phone was red hot.

Gerald, Rex Fell and I had traveled up to the sale together, we made numerous stops on the way home where Gerald would announce, WE BOUGHT THE TOP PRICED MARE IN THE SALE. We did, but I was paying for her. You can imagine our disappointment when on a hot Sunday afternoon we had to cut the foal out as a result of badly contracted legs. No pregnancy that year, I reckon as near as anyone can be entitled to a good result, we were on Tuesday. You can see from the page the combination of patience and Savabeel is producing the results we all aspire to, I am sure Te Akau will add to the record. Our part of the sale is over, Mary and I have a small group of mares we were lucky enough to gross close to 2m including a colt out of dual group one winner Suavito, I found it hard to part with him but 775k just got me over the line. He will be part of the Te Akau stallion syndicate, the two of you should let the moths fly, open the wallet and join in.

Were there disappointments, yes, the mid-range domestic support is undoubtedly affected by the lack of belief that positive change is about to happen, I spoke briefly with John Messara he continues to put a positive spin on his report being actioned. However, he did comment on the recent turnover downturn, exacerbated by the new betting platform. The rumour machine suggests a 30% decline on comparable dates last year.

If I had more than two readers somebody may refute these figures. I will wait but not hold my breath. The timing of the release of the NZTR Venue Report was unbelievable. I am a lonely supporter of Bernard and Allan but this clumsy timing does nobody credit, my support needed or not will be hard to justify. However, all is not lost we have a COMMITTEE. Cheers, G


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