Elderslie Stud NZ
Featured Image: The Elderslie Stud Sale,
The Elderslie Stud, Oamaru, NZ is forever imprinted in the elite pantheon of thoroughbred stud legends wherever and whenever they are discussed. It was here that the ‘immortal’ Phar Lap was bred. Phar Lap is rated at Number IV in the highest category of all-time champions together with Secretariat, Man O’War, Seabiscuit, Frankel, Ruffian, Black Caviar, Sea Bird II, Ribot, Citation and Zenyatta. There might be a more-than-slight American bias in these ratings but his place among them is incontrovertible and sacrosanct. Winx may be about to join the ultra-select list.
Due to health reasons Mr J B Reid decided to disperse his bloodstock from his idyllic stud farm located on the celebrated Canterbury Plains on the South Island. The sale included foundation sire Kilbroney, Sunny Lake (Imp.) and Markhope (Imp.). 57 mares and foals were sold separately. 20 dry mares were catalogued. A feature of the sale was the number of English mares including daughters of Thrush, Cicero, Desmond, William the Third, Martagon, Heliotrope, Catmint, Mintagon and Ladas.
In 1925 Mr J G Duncan acquired the Elderslie Property and appointed Chairman of Directors. Ken Austin was Managing Director. Ken was later co-author together with Dr W H Lang and Dr Stewart McKay of the seminal tome’ Racehorses in Australia’. Trading as Elderslie Stud Limited, the revitalised nursery enjoyed immediate success with the acquisition of great sire Night Raid. Going to Stud in 1927 the latter was the leading stallion in Australia in 1930 and 1931siring two Melbourne Cup Winners in Phar Lap and Nightmarch. (See next ‘blog’). The entrepreneurial Board of Directors promoted their own sale of yearlings at Trentham Racecourse, Wellington, NZ on Wednesday 23rd. January 1935. This was perhaps the progenitor of the NZ National Yearling Sale which used to be conducted at Upper Hutt, near Trentham? I first went there in 1969