27 May 2016

The juvenile event at Canberra on Friday was won by promising Pendragon colt Mercurial Lad, a $40,000 Inglis The Star Ready2Race Sale purchase from the Think Big Stud draft.

Trained by Barbara Joseph and Paul Jones, who purchased the youngster after being impressed with his pre-sale breeze, Mercurial Lad was second at Goulburn on debut earlier this month and improved again today.He scored a tenacious half neck win as favourite in the 1000 metre scamper with some seven lengths back to the third horse.

Bred and offered for sale by Think Big Stud, he is the third foal of O'Reilly mare Mercury Lady, who comes from the family of Group I winners Sacred Star and Diademe.

Story by Tara Madgwick -



17 May 2016

Trainer Phillip Stokes took Model Dragon to the City on her second start and was rewarded with a strong win by the 3YO Pendragon filly at Morphettville on Monday. Model Dragon was on the back foot when missing the start in the 1550m Class 2 and settled to the rear of the field on the rail. Jockey Dom Tourneur had to steer her to the extreme outside coming into the turn and she appreciated the clear running to storm home in impressive fashion winning by nearly two lengths over Octomint and The Clash a further three lengths back in third.

Strikingly similar to her stablemate Miss Gunpowder, both fillies are by our resident stallion, Pendragon and were the bred and raised at Think Big Stud and born only 2 days apart in late August 2012. Model Dragon, out of the dam, Cool and Chic, was retained to race by her breeders Don & Sally Baertschiger, Peter Lynch and Jason Bradley and is undefeated after two starts for trainer Phillip Stokes.

To view the impressive win by Model Dragon, click here


26 April 2016

The Unreserved Reduction of broodmares and race fillies from Think Big Stud to be offered at the Inglis Australian Broodmare Sale next Monday offers a rare opportunity to tap into the bloodlines that have made Dato Tan Chin Nam’s famed colours some of the most well-known and successful in the country.

Not many weeks pass that the familiar black and white chequerboard with yellow sleeve colours are not seen to advantage, most recently aboard Think Big homebred High Midnight at Rosehill on Saturday.

A four year-old gelding by High Chaparral (IRE), High Midnight won his fifth race from 14 starts taking his prizemoney in excess of $280,000.

Think Big Stud’s proven sire Pendragon was in hot form in Adelaide with Killarney Kid making it three wins in a row when successful over 2020 metres, while Think Big homebred filly Miss Gunpowder was a close second in the Listed SAJC Redelva Stakes at her second run back from a spell after winning the Group II Tranquil Star in the spring.

One of the flagbearers for Think Big Stud in recent years has been Champion 3YO Filly Faint Perfume, who headlines their reduction draft and will be offered as Lot 274.

Retained to race, Faint Perfume won five races and $1.4 million with highlight victories in the Group I VRC Oaks and ATC Vinery Stud Stakes.

A daughter of world renowned sire Shamardal (USA), her first foal is the promising winner Iron Boss and she will be offered in foal to champion sire Redoute’s Choice.

Think Big will present 38 lots including four well-bred race fillies from very successful families by So You Think and Pendragon.

Below are some of the draft highlights with many mares in foal to Northern Meteor’s brilliant son Eurozone, who was raced by Dato Tan Chin Nam in partnership with great success.

Eurozone is being given every opportunity for success at Newgate Farm and has covered nearly 300 mares in his first two seasons.

Lot 245 Maie Casey (IRE) – Imported half-sister by Singspiel to Australian Group II winner Zydeco from Group I MRC Thousand Guineas winner All Time High, a half-sister to $2.6 million earner All Our Mob.

All Time High had a winner for Godolphin at Cranbourne last Friday with 3YO Lonhro gelding Spiral showing good promise.

Offered in foal to Eurozone.

Lot 249 Miss Magdelene – Half-sister to Group I MRC Caulfield Guineas winner Wonderful World from prolific speedy Black Type family that has also produced Group I winners Spartacus and Billet Express. 

Offered in foal to Eurozone.

Lot 262 Think Money – Quality staying filly by Danehill Dancer (IRE) that was second in the Group I ATC Australian Oaks and fourth in the Group I VRC Oaks. From the family of current Kiwi Group I winner Dukedom.

Offered in foal to Eurozone.

Lot 267 – Yurrapendi – Four time winning full sister to progressive 3YO filly Subsolar, who is trained by Chris Anderson and heading to the Group III BRC Doomben Roses. From an international family featuring outstanding French Group I winner Move in Time.

Offered in foal to Eurozone.

Lot 269 Ares De Lago – By the current leading broodmare sire in the country Encosta de Lago and is carrying a full sibling to stakes-placed Smart Lad as she is in foal to Prince Arthur. 

From a proven Group I producing family that includes Mnemosyne, the dam of last Saturday’s impressive Sydney 2YO debut winner Impending.

Lot 272 Dance on the Moon (IRE) – Winning dam of Group III winner Awesome Planet, the dam of smart stakes-winner Awesome Rock, who won the Group I VRC Australian Cup before losing it on protest.

Offered in foal to Eurozone.

Lot 277 – Hilylia - Half-sister by High Chaparral (IRE) to Group III winner Shamalia from the family of US Group I winner Super Quercus.

Being offered as a racing and breeding proposition.

Story by Tara Madgwick -


23 April 2016

James Cummings' winning roll continued at Rosehill on Saturday when he notched up a double in consecutive races.

Cummings teamed-up with James McDonald aboard four-year-old mare Muy Bien to lead throughout in the TAB Just More Than Winning F&M Benchmark 78 Handicap (1400m) then forty minutes later it was Glyn Schofield getting the best out of High Midnight to win the Bowermans Office Furniture Benchmark 83 Handicap (1500m).

High Midnight

High Midnight

High Midnight ($3.90 fav) box-seated until looming into the straight then had to dig deep after being headed by the Kim Waugh-trained His Majesty ($4), proving too tough at the business end, prevailing by a half-head

"He's just a good, genuine, tough racehorse," Cummings said. "The Scone Cup might be his go."

The Anthony Cummings-trained Spy Decoder ($11) ran on into third a further 1-1/4 lengths away.

Click here to view the replay courtesy of Racing NSW.

Story by Paul Joice -


16 April 2016

The James Cummings-trained Yattarna overcame a steep class rise to win Saturday's Group III JHB Carr Stakes (1400m) at Randwick.

After finishing runner-up in a benchmark 72 event at Wyong, Yattarna appeared out of her depth in the $150,000 set-weights and penalties contest, allocated just 3kg off the top-rated Pearls when she was entitled to 10.5kg under normal handicap conditions.



In addition, the daughter of Exceed And Excel had only won one race from eight starts, whereas some of her rivals had won as many as four races.After finishing runner-up in a benchmark 72 event at Wyong, Yattarna appeared out of her depth in the $150,000 set-weights and penalties contest, allocated just 3kg off the top-rated Pearls when she was entitled to 10.5kg under normal handicap conditions.

But that mattered little once Yattarna ($31), ridden by Glyn Schofield, led and bravely staved off challenges on her inside and outside to claim victory.

The New Zealand filly No More Tears ($10), trained by Stephen Marsh, finished a half-length away in second while Bjorn Baker's Lady Sniper ($6.50) was another short half-head back in third. Godolphin filly Pearls ($2.20 fav) had too much ground to make up from the back of the field after missing the start and finished seventh, beaten just over two lengths.

Cummings, who has astutely picked his mark during the Sydney autumn carnival with four black type successes, said Yattarna was headed for the spelling paddock until a strong piece of track work last Saturday morning.

"The filly was nearly going to the paddock after she was beaten at Wyong last start but we saved her up and let her go around in a very good course proper gallop last Saturday morning." Cummings said.

"I knew that win, lose or draw she would be in the paddock on Monday but I think one of the things you really have to work on as a trainer is to build your horses up and still have something for that final run you've always had your mind on.

"Thankfully the horse was just in the zone, she fought on like she didn't want a horse to beat her.

"She's tripled her value today – to say nothing of the prizemoney she has picked up.

"It's been a great carnival but I have a great team behind me and getting fast horses also helps."

Click here to watch the replay of the 2016 JHB Carr Stakes

Story by Tom Walter - Racenet


2 March 2016

Less than a week after Fastnet Rock posted a juvenile stakes quinella in New Zealand with exciting colts Heroic Valour and Mongolian Falcon, the champion sire produced another two year-old colt with stakes aspirations in Rock and Swing, who scored an eye-catching debut win at Warwick Farm on Wednesday.

A big athletic colt prepared by James Cummings, he was fourth in a recent trial won by his stablemate and subsequent Group II winner Good Standing.

Tackling 1200 metres for his first outing, Rock and Swing found the line strongly for Hugh Bowman to outpoint well bred filly Sparkle (More Than Ready (USA) from Group I winner Gallica) to win by a short half head.

A $600,000 NZB Premier purchase from the Waikato Stud draft for Duncan Ramage’s DGR Thoroughbreds, Rock and Swing comes with a big pedigree as he is the first winner for Sadler’s Wells mare Dance on By (IRE), a full sister to Epsom Derby winner and leading sire High Chaparral (IRE).

"He’s a very exciting colt and it was very pleasing to see him win like that,” said James Cummings, who has stakes goals in mind for the royally bred colt starting with the Group 3 ATC TL Baillieu Handicap over 1400 metres on March 26.

"We’ll probably go for the Baillieu. The other option is the Pago Pago (Group 2 over 1200 metres), but at this stage my recommendation would be for the longer options like the Baillieu and then the Fernhill (1600 metres) at Randwick.

"I think in the spring he can be a very good horse from 1600 to 2000metres.

"Duncan (Ramage) has bought so many good horses from Karaka for us over the years, So You Think and Norzita… hopefully this colt will be another.”

Story by Tara Madgwick –