Waikato Stud

Waikato Stud’s lush pastures continue to produce classic winners with a Guineas double for the farm in 2017. Both New Zealand Two Thousand Guineas-Gr.1 winner Embellish and New Zealand One Thousand Guineas-Gr.1 winner Hasahalo were sold from their 2016 New Zealand Bloodstock yearling draft, and both are by Waikato Stud’s Champion Sire Savabeel. Savabeel made it three Gr.1 winners in three weeks in November 2017, when Shillelagh won the Gr.1 Cantala Stakes (Kennedy Mile) in Victoria.

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Already the 2017 draft, who have only recently turned two, has produced a stakes horse in Masque (Savabeel), a winner on debut who ran third in the 2017 Listed Wellesley Stakes at only his second start. The farm will present 84 yearlings in 2018. There are 35 yearlings by Champion Sire Savabeel to select from, while exciting first season sire Sacred Falls has 21 yearlings in the 2018 Waikato Stud draft. Other stallions represented are young stakes producing sire Ocean Park (15 yearlings), Pins (8 yearlings), Rock ‘n’ Pop (4), and So You Think (1).

Mark Chittick told Bluebloods, “I find every month in the horse industry has something to look forward to, but the last month in particular has made Waikato Stud proud, off the back of Savabeel’s three individual Gr.1 winners. And for us to be the breeders of the Guineas double with different individuals was an extreme lifetime highlight. The timing is perfect as we get nearer to the 2018 sales series. I’m very excited about the new sales format, and we have a wonderful high quality draft of 84 yearlings in the new first book for the international buyers. This year we offer for the first time the stock of dual Doncaster winner Sacred Falls, who holds such a special place in our breeding hearts, being homebred and being O’Reilly’s best performed son and on top of all of that, we are extremely proud of the types he is producing. He fits our stallion mould on type and race performance, and it was how he won those races with incredible turn of foot that appealed most of all. His stock, to me, are stamped by him, and look to possess the same physical attributes he has. He’s been extremely well supported by syndicate ownership in numbers and quality, and I’m sure his stock will end up in training environments that will give Sacred Falls every opportunity world wide.”

For us to be the breeders of the Guineas double with different individuals was an extreme lifetime highlight.

Sacred Falls is one of the most exciting young stallions in New Zealand, and as a son of Champion Sire O’Reilly, he has big shoes to fill at Waikato Stud. Waikato Stud will present 21 yearlings by Sacred Falls, including Lot 167, a colt out of Australian Gr.2 winner Do Ra Mi, whose first foal to race is stakes placed Hanger. A filly with residual value is Lot 373, a half-sister to stakes horses Residential, and Colonel Custer. The dam of these three is stakes winner Metropolitan (Elusive City), herself a half-sister to stakes winner Coup Liner. Another filly with pedigree to burn is Lot 478, a half-sister to Gr.2 Wellington Guineas winner President Lincoln, and this filly’s winning dam, Pinot Gris (Pentire) is a daughter of super tough Gr.2 winner of 24 races, Covered n’ Grey (dam of stakes winner Blitz’em Riley).

Sacred Falls colt, Lot 287, is superbly bred, as his dam J’Lo (Unbridled’s Song) has had five to race for four black type performers, a strike rate to make anyone’s mouth water, including Gr.3 winner Glamorous Girl. A half-brother to dual Gr.3 winner High Fashion, Lot 477, is out of stakes placed Pin High (Pins), who is herself a half-sister to group winner Ultimate Aim.

Kiwi Karma, a precocious winner of Singapore’s Gr.2 Aushorse Goldenhorse, has a Sacred Falls half-sister, Lot 396, and this filly’s dam, Miss Purrfection is a winning half-sister to group winner Cheiron. Stakes winner Glam Slam is one of four stakes horses for her dam, and Glam Slam’s yearling colt is Lot 233. The first foal of stakes placed Zabeel mare, Sheezababe, is a Sacred Falls colt, Lot 572. Sheezababe is a daughter of Champion Stayer and Gr.1 Sydney Cup winner Honor Babe.

Chittick said, “Savabeel had another fabulous season in 2016/17 with 19 individual stakes winners, and is again leading all three sire premierships by a considerable margin this season. The lion’s share of our draft is by Savabeel. It’s hard to individualise standouts because he leaves such wonderful types – the colt ex I Do, the colt ex Legs, the half-brother to Sacred Falls – the list goes on and on and on with the best quality mares and types. One of the biggest positives for us as a farm was to see our highest ever priced Savabeel, Embellish ($775,000 in 2016) win a three year-old Classic, and at the same time, Savabeel’s other Guineas winner, Hasahalo, was moderately priced for a Savabeel yearling ($110,000 in 2016). He’s an incredible sire.”

With 35 Savabeel yearlings in this draft, there are many pedigree highlights among them, including the two colts out of Gr.1 winning racemares. Lot 263 is the second foal from Gr.1 winner I Do (No Excuse Needed) who won 15 races up to a mile, and Lot 336 is a half-brother to stakes winner Wolfwhistle, and is out of dual Gr.1 winner Legs (Pins). The other colt mentioned by Chittick is Lot 265, the half-brother to Sacred Falls, out of winning Redoute’s Choice mare Iguazu’s Girl (a daughter of group winner Iguazu).

Q & A with Mark Chittick

Your best prospects for the Karaka Million 2YO and the 3YO?

Given our history with these races, it’s likely that one of this draft will win the 2019 edition of the Karaka Million! Seriously though, we have had a lot of a success with progeny off the farm, both ours and clients, with the Karaka Million races, with the winner and half a dozen others who have placed. It’s hard to individualise a horse that will be suited to this race – because the horses we’ve sold into this race have all been different types of horses. Felton Road (Pins), who ran third in 2017, was a lovely horse but his precocity surprised me. The Chris Waller trained three-year-old Scream Park (Ocean Park) is being targeted for the Classic race and should be a really good contender.

Do you follow any particular breeding theories?

Not particularly. We simply try to breed the best racehorses we can. We start with athletes, multiply their best attributes, it’s a mix of type, performance, strength, everything.

What sports do you play or like to follow?

I love sports, rugby, all sports, really. I love the competition of all sports. I really love, when I can, live sports. Very easy to watch on tv, but nothing beats the experience of live sports. Went to Australian Open tennis a couple of years ago, it was just incredible to see top level athletes up close and live. My favourite sport – you can’t beat good horse racing, the top carnivals in Australia, and to see great athletes performing at their best in competition.

521 Tower Rd, RD1, Matamata

Contact: Mark Chittick Mobile: (64) 21 433 252

Phone: (64) 7 888 7717 Fax: (64) 7 888 6215

Email: info@waikatostud.co.nz