Torryburn Celebrate Group One Success

November 11 - From the fastest foal in the paddock to the fastest sprinter at Flemington, racing’s latest millionaire Terravista has a story to tell.

Rising sprint star Terravista confirmed Joe Pride’s huge opinion of him by winning the $1million Group I VRC Darley Classic at Flemington last Saturday on the same day his four year-old half-brother Ball of Muscle took another step up the ladder with a dominant win at Randwick – both horses foaled and raised at the Cornish family owned Torryburn Stud.

Terravista and Ball of Muscle are from Mike Ryan’s star producer Parfore, a New Zealand bred 17 year-old daughter of Gold Brose that has also given us Group I winner Tiger Tees, Singapore champion Super Easy and smart stakes-winner Our Lukas.

Since being acquired by Mr Ryan in 2004 for $30,000 at the NZB National Bloodstock Sale through Paul Willetts, Parfore has spent much of her time at stud in New Zealand, but when she has come across to Australia for any length of time, her base has been at Torryburn under the care of Stud Manager, Reggie Blundell.

“It came about through mutual friends that had horses with us and she arrived here in foal to Captain Rio,” explained Reggie Blundell.

“When they told me I said, ‘Captain what?’… I’d never heard of him!”

Terravista was born at Torryburn on November 5, 2009 and the next year Parfore delivered another colt (Ball of Muscle) at the farm by Dubawi (IRE), before being sent back to New Zealand empty.

“She is a lovely mare, big and strong with no vices and a placid temperament,” said Blundell.

“She puts so much substance and bone into those foals. They are all like her in that regard, massive shoulders and hindquarters, big horses with a great attitude.

“She’s just a very good broodmare in the way she raises them. They get the physical type and she makes plenty of milk, so they grow big and strong, but also the mental side of it. It’s a bit like any mother that does a particularly good job raising their children.”

A foal that was born with a huge head and was an awkward big baby in the early days, Terravista captivated Reggie from the start.

“Like his mother he is very calm and cruisy and spent a lot of time sleeping as a foal,” she revealed.

“I was watching them in the paddock one day and the other foals and their mothers moved off and left him on his own.

“The other foals were always picking on him and wanting him to play and he just wanted to sleep.

“Anyway he woke up and realised they had gone and he jumped up, took one look where they were and bolted over to them and straight past me.

“I’ve never seen a foal move from whoa to go that fast, the power of the pick-up was amazing!”

Time passed and his breeder Mike Ryan decided to put a value on the colt and syndicate him among friends, so it was mentioned to Reggie that she might like to take a share.

“I had some money put away that I had in mind to spend on a horse and I just had a gut feeling about him so I took 5%,” Blundell said.

“He won his first start and not long after another 5% share became available and it was offered to me and after much consideration and discussion with my husband I bought that as well, but at his very next start he fractured his pelvis… I just felt sick! I can’t tell you how disappointing it was.”

Returned to Torryburn to rest and recuperate, Terravista eventually went back into work and won his next three starts before finishing second in the Listed ATC Festival Stakes.

“He had a little chip on a knee that we had to get sorted so there was some more time off, but I always think things happen for a reason and the injuries he’s had probably made us give him the time he needed in the first place,” Blundell said.

“We’re really busy here at the moment as you can imagine with the breeding season and Magic Millions yearlings coming in, but I saw a window of opportunity to go to Melbourne last Saturday to watch him race and grabbed it.

“When you work with horses like we do, you realise how rare it is to actually own a share in a horse that has a real chance in a Group I race, so it was something I didn’t want to miss.

“Hugh Bowman is the perfect rider for him as he understands him so well and can keep his momentum going which is so important for a big horse like him.

“I looked up at the furlong and thought, he’s going to run a nice race… but then it was like the waters parted and that big chestnut head came through the gap.

“It’s all been a bit surreal the last few days. To have foaled him down myself and then had him here all the way through in between preparations, makes it just so special.

“All the boys that are in him are mates and have all had hands on involvement with the horse up at the farm, so it’s been a team effort.”

Terravista is due back to Torryburn to spell on Wednesday where he will join his older half-brother Tiger Tees, who is also spelling and his younger two year-old half-brother by Zabeel that is being readied for his first preparation.

“Tiger Tees has spelled with us in recent times and had a long break here before he went back in and won the Group I Galaxy earlier this year,” said Blundell.

“He’d been a bit out of form when he arrived, so it was very satisfying to look after him for those few months and see him go back and soar to new heights.”

The Zabeel colt arrived from New Zealand six weeks ago and has already won approval from Reggie, who has taken a share in this one too.

“I wanted to see him before I decided, but he’s an outstanding colt, although more of a Zabeel as you would expect so maybe a bit more of a stayer,” Blundell said.

“He’s already broken in, but will be heading to Tim Boland this week for some early education and pre-training before he goes to Peter and Paul Snowden.”

Given the fabulous track record of Parfore to such a wide variety of sires, once can only wonder what her mating with a champion sire such as Zabeel will produce.

Watch this space!


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