Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium
Featured Image: Dimray, one of the most important sons of Radium, and an outstanding campdrafter in his own right – Pictured here with Alf Bignall, showing brilliant style in the campdraft arena
Once gain legendary horseman Carl Mitchell decided to send a great mare called Doreen to the best stallion he knew, and of course that horse was Radium. The resulting colt, Dimray, was born in 1938.
Doreen was purchased for 60 pounds in the early 1930s, which was a ‘king’s ransom’ in those days. Doreen was by Sylvius, a Thoroughbred that placed in the Melbourne Cup. Sylvius’s dam was a mare called Addenda, who was by Spearmint, Spearmint was by Carbine (NZ), and his sire Silvern, who was by Polymelus, a very influential Australian Stock Horse taproot sire.
Like his sire and grandsire, Dimray was a wonderful campdrafter. He also was bred in the Upper Hunter, on the sides of the Great Divide at ‘Uloola’, Ellerston. This area was quite isolated in those days, so it was nothing for Carl to ride 40 or 50 miles to a campdraft and then back home. Despite the distance, Carl won many campdrafts in the Upper Hunter.
In 1948 when Carl represented Hunter Valley at the Royal Easter Show on Dimray, he scored a 93, which stood out as the highest score in Sydney for a number of years. Carl lent Dimray to Alf Bignall, a well-known campdraft competitor from the Maitland area, who was also very successful with him. At one stage Dimray won five campdrafts in a row.
In the early 1950s Dimray was sold to Frank Dickie at Edgeroi, where he later died. Dimray was very important as the sire of two influential Foundation Sires, REALITY – FS and PETER – FS. The dam of STANTON STUD DODGE – FS, Glamour, was also by Dimray. Many pundits consider Dimray is the most influential tap root sire of modern campdrafters.