Sep 06, 2013

Led by Tony Noonan and Louis Mihalyka of Laurel Oak Bloodstock, 5 of Tony Noonan Racing’s team headed to New Zealand last Sunday for a brief tour of the key New Zealand studs to check out both new and established stallions. Joining Tony and Louis were Tony Noonan Racing stable supporters Dave McGain, Jammie “Teflon” Dillon and Graeme Ward.

It was a wonderful trip and we inspected 6 studs including the dominant Waikato and the historic Cambridge studs - the absolute highlight of the latter was being introduced to the legendary Sir Patrick Hogan and catching up with the enduring and champion stallion Zabeel (pictured).

Other studs visited included Brighthill, Rich Hill, Westbury and Windsor Park.

Particular stallions of interest included the established Pins, O’Reilly and Pentire as well as newcomers in Shocking, Jimmy Choux, Pour moi, Guillotine, Power, Azamour, Makfi and Ocean Park. We also attended trackwork at Cambridge on Tuesday morning and caught up with two year olds purchased by Tony, Louis and Jammie in New Zealand earlier this year.

Hospitality by our host studs and other New Zealand industry players was outstanding and this was greatly facilitated by both Tony and Louis building on their long experience and involvement in the New Zealand thoroughbred industry. New Zealand breeding has a lot to offer with a contrasting stallion roster to Australia with emphasis on middle distance and staying lines, lower service fees, rich pastures and generally lower cost structures.

Thanks to Tony and Louis for their planning and leadership of the trip and special mention to Teflon for his unique entertainment and commentary throughout.

Thanks to Graeme Ward for the report.