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Te Akau Monday Update

13 May 2013

This last week we have had Karyn’s mum Sylvia at the farm to stay and yesterday we went to Auckland to see my mother who is in the Caughey Preston Hospital in Remuera. Then we took Karyn’s mum out for lunch along with my sister Sue, her husband Mel, our daughters Julia-Rose and Sarah and our niece, Sue and Mel’s daughter, Sacha. We went to the Botswana Butchery down by the viaduct basin and had a very enjoyable few hours laughing and enjoying each other’s company.

There was no racing in Singapore last night but I did get a big thrill out of Encosta Diablo (aka Bentley) winning for his owners on Friday night. Encosta Diablo is one of my favourite horses and his owners have been so patient and they all really deserved the win on Friday night.

Bentley won his first three starts as a two year old including the Listed Welcome Stakes at Riccarton but has battled to find that form since. But like a true champion, our Singapore trainer Mark Walker never gave up on him and Friday night’s win was a great result for the work that Mark and his staff have put in to trying to turn him around.

Encosta Diablo’s win was Mark 990th career win and he is now only ten wins away from training 1000 winners and he is only 40 years of age.  This is a truly unbelievable performance and I am just so proud of these results.  I travel to Singapore tomorrow and Mark has some new owners there for me to meet which I am looking forward to but most of all Karyn and I are looking forward to seeing our two godchildren Zavier and Alexis, as well as Mark and Julia.

Karyn is travelling on Thursday to Singapore with a terrific group of our owners who are off together to enjoy their Singapore Sling for 2013. We will have two great days/nights of racing and plenty of other activities including attending track work and a visit to Te Akau Singapore’s stables.

It is another magnificent morning at Te Akau Stud.  We are in for a beautiful fine week and the bonus is that there are no frosts and today the temperature is forecast to reach 21 degrees which means that there will be plenty of grass grown. We are feeding out haylage at the moment.  We made 500 bales in early November and it is so much easier feeding this out when it is not raining.

This morning we are bringing four yearlings, two colts and two fillies up to be broken in plus we have six horses that are coming home from the stable to spell.

Today Te Akau is sponsoring the whole race day at Paeroa – yes every race.  The background to this is as follows:

 I am firmly of the belief that we have too many race courses in New Zealand however in the North until we get an all-weather track which we can use for trialling in May, June July , August and September we need every course proper that we currently have to enable our young horses to trial on well prepared tracks which is vitally important.  It is disappointing that the people of Paeroa do not support this club. But nevertheless if we want Paeroa as a venue for trialling and winter racing we need to support it as an industry.  Paeroa is now run by the Waikato Racing Club and they will not continue to run it if it is run at a loss – and why should they?  This is an industry issue.

Today we have a lot of cattle to draft up today before I leave for Singapore tomorrow so it’s all hands on the deck.

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