Ortensia

Ortensia

I was greatly enjoying the company of Alister Fraser and Paul Frampton at Scone Races on Monday 22nd July 2019. Alister was a busy committeeman of the club (one of very few) and Paul had just won Race 1 with rank outsider ‘Tann Hills’. Paul, originally from England, regaled us with his fascinating story of attending the very recent Royal Ascot Meeting as a privileged guest in a private box in the Royal Enclosure. Alister almost trumped his tale with a description of his own foray a few years earlier when his mare ‘Ortensia’ competed at Royal Ascot. She did not win on that occasion but Alister had witnessed ‘Frankel’ succeed on Day 1 and ‘Black Caviare’ frank her own fame on the final day. I was suddenly reminded that the success of ‘Ortensia’ was a Scone legend in its own right. Alister’s elder brother George had stamped his laurels as the official breeder of ‘Shocking’ who succeeded in the 2009 running of the Melbourne Cup.

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‘Caranna’ and the Cobcrofts

‘Caranna’ and the Cobcrofts

Featured Image: Denise and John Cobcroft at a Sydney ball in 1974

Picture: Rick Stevens     Caroline Overington       The Australian   12:00AM November 1, 2017

 

I’ve labelled this as being about really good race horse ‘Carannna’ but he’s actually only the lynchpin. It’s all about his owners; the Cobcroft Family of ‘Willowtree’. If you want to know about Caranna the racehorse and stallion visit Ian Ibbett’s great website:

http://kingsoftheturf.com/1955-the-hush-about-caranna/

The story of ‘Caranna’s win in the 1955 AJC Derby is a great one. The Cobcroft Brothers Gavin and Arthur were the very fabric of the then ruling rural realm of extremely successful farmers and graziers. They were also the embodiment of the post-WWII veterans who returned to a ‘land of plenty’ in the massive wool boom of the same era. They were hedonistic as well as halcyon days. They all deserved their rich rewards. Fellow genre grazier and North African veteran J K Thompson of ‘Ballantyne’, Cassillis ran second in the race with ‘Gay Rannick’. The winners’ enclosure would have resounded wildly and loudly to the bards from the bush. I’ll wager there were some massive side-bets and negotiable bragging rights?

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