The News Desk


Breeding Dreams with Richard Haynes

The breeding barn and the sales ring bring an aura of hope and uncertainty that attracts so many to the sport of racing. SKY Racing expert commentatorRICHARD HAYNES is across all the movements within the industry that is the backbone of thoroughbred racing.


G1 winning filly FUNSTAR (by Adelaide (Ire)) was expected to break all Australian online sale records for a mare offered in this forum, and late last Wednesday she certainly didn’t disappoint.

When the bidding eventually stopped at $2,700,000, Funstar set a world record for a thoroughbred offered for sale online.

Raced by the Koolman and Inglis families, Funstar was purchased by Katsumi Yoshida for Japanese breeding giant Northern Farm. And as Mr Yoshida explained, it was all about keeping it in the family.

“I am so thrilled that we were able to purchase a beautiful mare,” Yoshida said.

“We have her (half) sister YOUNGSTAR, and also have mares related to the granddam, USER FRIENDLY.

“We are looking forward to seeing their progenies winning in Japan.”

For the Koolman family, it was a result which exceeded all expectations.

“I’m absolutely stunned. It’s hard to fathom just how much of an amazing result this is,’’ Oliver Koolman said.

“She was a fabulous race filly and mare and we had a lot of fun with her, but never in our wildest dreams did we expect she would sell for $2.7m in any sale, let alone a digital sale.

“We’ve been glued to our computers since mid-afternoon, we opened a bottle of champagne at $1.3m to celebrate, so it’s incredible to be sitting here now with her having made $2.7m.

“We wish Northern Farm all the best with her, we thank all the underbidders and we can’t wait to sit back and see her progeny running in years to come,’’ Koolman added.


ON the topic of Japan, over the past fortnight the JRHA held their Select Sale of yearlings and weanlings.

Of the 248 yearlings offered was a HEART’S CRY colt out of SHE WILL REIGN, the first foal of the Golden Slipper and Moir Stakes winner. Offered by Northern Farm, buyer Danox Co. Ltd paid 165,000,000 Yen ($AUS2,050,000) for the colt.

In the weanling session, another filly well known to Aussie race goers made an even bigger impact, with the colt by former Horse of the Year in Japan, LORD KANALOA out of YANKEE ROSE, selling for a whopping 370,000,000 Yen ($AUS4,618,000), also to the bid of Danox Co. Ltd.


EVERY now and then a mare comes along that can do no wrong in the breeding barn. In this part of the world, the mighty EIGHT CARAT (GB) (dam of five stakes winners) springs to mind. So does PRIDE OF TAHNEE (dam of G1 winners, SHOGUN LODGE, REFERRAL and SINGING THE BLUES) and the Darley mare ACCESSORIES (GB) (dam of four stakes winners HELMET, EPAULETTE, BULLBARS and PEARLS).

The way she’s going, we’ll soon be adding BONNIE MAC (NZ) (by THORN PARK) to that list.

After a shaky start in the breeding shed, her first foal to the races was G1 VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes winner EXCEEDENCE. She followed that up with full brother OXLEY ROAD, winner of the G3 MRC Zeditave Stakes who could well continue his career in Singapore.

On Saturday, her SEBRING 2yo, MAC ’N’ CHEESE, announced herself as a serious filly with victory in the Listed SAJC Oaklands Plate, and her progeny’s racetrack success has been quickly followed by sales ring success at Inglis Easter this year, with her colt by CAPITALIST bringing $1,050,000 to the bid of Greg Hickman.

Missing on a late cover last season, we’ll all be interested to see which stallion Bonnie Mac visits in 2021.

Check out the latest TAB markets here.


WE tend to keep coming back to First Crop sires for this section, but it's only because so many are having terrific starts to their careers.

He might be up against some more high-profile barn-mates, but WINNING RUPERT is showing he can get horses much like himself, damn fast!

A stakes-placing for TONNEOFGRIT at Morphettville on Saturday capped off a good run right around the country for the sharp son of WRITTEN TYCOON, and with 11 individual winners to his name from 28 starters, the team at Newgate Farm would be happy with his progress.


I THINK we saw a horse for the future at Doomben last Wednesday with the debut of the Tony Gollan-trained BRENTWOOD.

He looked a terrific type in the yard pre-race, and this $500,000 Magic Millions yearling ran right up to his looks for a smooth victory. Offered by Yarraman Park Stud, and by I AM INVINCIBLE, he’s the first foal out of two-time G3 placed (as a 2yo) filly PURSUITS, herself a half-sister to G3 winner JORDA and close relation to Inglis Banner winner ESPAANIYAH.

It’s a fast family, but he looks like 1400m and further will be easily within his scope.


ALREADY a winner at the Sunshine Coast in February for First Light Racing, Robert Heathcote was happy to miss the Queensland Winter Carnival with RELEASE THE BEANS and it immediately paid dividends.

This $20,000 Magic Million March yearling took his earnings to $93,000 (inc. QTIS bonuses) with the promise of much more to come following a tough win at Eagle Farm on the weekend.

By SPILL THE BEANS, he is the second foal of a winning NEW APPROACH mare, and goes back to a nice French family.

Check out the latest TAB Futures markets here.


WARWICK Farm trainer Bryce Heys might have a nice horse on his hands in the shape of rising 3yo AS YOU WERE (NZ).

I thought his recent Canterbury trial showed enough to say he’ll be competitive in at least a provincial maiden. A $100,000 Karaka yearling and offered by Little Avondale Stud, this son of PER INCANTO (USA) (think LOST AND RUNNING by the sire) is out of Listed ARC Sunline Vase winner A CHANCE TO DREAM, and is a close relation to smart types KISSME KETUT and KAONIC.

He is an acceptor at Kembla Grange on Thursday with James McDonald booked for the ride.

Richard Haynes is the host of Racing HQ on Sky Sports Radio, Saturdays 6.30-11am and is an integral part of Sky Thoroughbred Central’s on-course and studio hosting duties. Richard also features weekly on News Central (Wednesday’s - Ch528).