THE TEAM AT LIME COUNTRY THOROUGHBREDS MADE THE BRAVE MOVE FROM THE SUNNY HAWKES BAY REGION OF NEW ZEALAND TO TAKE ON A NEW CHALLENGE IN THE SOUTHERN HIGHLANDS OF NSW. THE FARM, PREVIOUSLY THINK BIG STUD, WILL SEND ITS DEBUT DRAFT TO MAGIC MILLIONS GOLD COAST IN 2018. BLUEBLOODS SPOKE TO PROPRIETOR JO GRIFFIN ABOUT HER DECISION, AND HOW LIME COUNTRY THOROUGHBREDS HAS EVOLVED IN THE LAST TWELVE MONTHS.
“We’ve spent nearly a year settling in here to this beautiful, lush property. The biggest challenge for us has been setting up an entire new team, which is a rare opportunity to create a team specific to the needs of the business. We’ve split the property into three divisions, breeding, sales, and racing stock, with separate excellent managers in each of the three areas. We are so pleased with the way they’ve worked together, and how that has translated into the horses growing out well and top fertility rates for the broodmare band this season. It’s highly satisfying to see our choices come to fruition so quickly. We are enjoying building relationships with people in the industry here in Australia, and have had plenty of visitors to the farm. Lime Country Thoroughbreds is fortunate to have a strong list of clients, and it is sensational to do good work for good people.”
Lime Country Thoroughbreds quickly built a solid reputation for producing top class racehorses from its New Zealand base, and this will give buyers at Magic Millions the confidence to inspect their debut draft, knowing that the same experience has crafted the yearlings on offer. Hong Kong Champion Griffin Premiere (Dylan Thomas – More Than Sum, by More than Ready) for 2016/17 was sold by Lime Country Thoroughbreds, as was Singapore Gold Cup winner Bahana (Elusive City – Khales, by Don Eduardo), stakes winners Fascination Street (Elusive City – Piece of Cake, by Snippets) and Twilight Granita (Iffraaj – Granita).
www.limecountry.com.auJo Griffin: 0428 960 669
Greg Griffin: 0429 002 964
How would you sum up your 2018 draft?
We’ve put together what we think is a trainer’s draft. They are a very solid line up of good physical types with quality about them. Greg and I have gone for quality over quantity in the draft and we don’t feel there is a weak link in the line-up as far as the individuals go. Three of the six yearlings are half siblings to stakes winners, the remaining three are from young mares from strong black type families with the credentials to produce running types.
A Fastnet Rock half sister to dual Gr.1 winner Julinsky Prince, and seven race winning stakes placed Foreign Prince, will be a must inspect, as this filly is also out of stakes winner Julinksy Princess, herself a half sister to two stakes winners.
A half brother to two stakes winners (Thorn Prince, and Alinko Prince) is the colt by Choisir from Shinko Princess, while a Dream Ahead half-brother to Listed winner Silvera is from a half sister to Gr.1 star Shoot Out.
First season sire Hallowed Crown has a filly from Midnight Moment, a winning American half sister to two stakes winners, while the colt by Not a Single Doubt is the first foal of Irish Pipedream, a half sister to stakes winners Rain Dream, and Snitzel Spirit. A Denman colt from winning mare Unswerving is a half sibling to four winners, and his dam is a half sister to juvenile Gr.3 winner Firm, dam of stakes winner Trim.
This is your first draft at Magic Millions. What is your personal Magic Millions ambition?
It’s a bit of a mix, firstly for each horse in the draft to be perfectly prepped to its individual requirements. Secondly, to achieve 100% clearance rate, getting great results for our owners who have put so much thought and investment into producing the stock we’ll offer for them. Thirdly, to provide our buyers with well educated, well grown, sound racing propositions that they can come back and win a race with at MM in 12 months’ time!
What do you wish people would take more notice of?
From a business perspective, after coming from overseas we are aware that people in Australia often fail to recognise just how fabulous the racing and breeding industry is here. While it’s human nature to always want more, I think Australia has plenty to be proud of at this moment in time, it is vibrant and progressive, we love it!
Personally, we always remind each other to notice just how lucky we are. If you have loved ones around, cash in the bank, feed on the farm and the sun is shining – it’s worth noticing, it’s good day.
What is your favourite movie?
Disgracefully, anything with plenty of sex, violence and fast cars.