Winter is Coming!


An oft-used line in the popular television series Game Of Thrones, Winter Is Coming conjures up trepidation and concern for those living in the Seven Kingdoms. In racing it means cold mornings at trackwork, wet tracks, synthetic track racing, apprentice jockeys to the fore, scorching hot party pies in the owners’ room, woolly coats, and sayings such as ‘getting the toe in the ground’, ‘mudlark’ and ‘swimmer’. It’s also a time where we discover a little more about our yearlings and which ones might be suitable candidates for the early two year-old races.

Next season the first two year-old race for fillies in Sydney is the Listed Gimcrack Stakes on September 29 (and for Melbourne it’s the Debutant Stakes a fortnight later on Caulfield Guineas day). For a horse to be ready for this race they need to be trialling in mid-September, which means we need to be counting back several months to get our timings right. 

To identify a yearling that might be a suitable candidate for an early two year-old race, there are a number of traits to look for including, but not limited to; physique, temperament, pedigree, action and appetite. Each of these has a number of sub-sections, and it’s something we collaborate closely on with our trainers. Exciting times ahead for our yearlings, which are all undefeated at this point in time! Read on for an update on how each of the 2018 JHB Syndications yearlings are progressing towards these early races…

We have a couple of runners to keep an eye on next week, in both Melbourne and Sydney. We’re planning on running First Diamond at Werribee next Friday, after she was scratched from tonight’s race at Cranbourne. She’s a nice filly (made her debut last spring in the Ballarat Magic Millions where she didn’t handle the heavy conditions) that will be well suited to the 1100m at Werribee against the fillies, on the back of some pleasing trackwork with the blinkers on earlier this week. We have also accepted with Vivre La Vie at Wyong on Tuesday over 1300m. Vivre La Vie has also shown promise, and in her only racetrack appearance to date ran a solid second at Ballarat to La Parva, who then at her next start ran a close 5th in the Blue Diamond Prelude. Good luck to all connections!

Finally, I would like to congratulate all of the inductees to the Australian Racing Hall Of Fame, to be held tonight in Sydney. A special mention goes to the late and great Colin Hayes AM OBE who will be elevated to legend status. The way Colin Hayes went about training is the reason I fell in love with racing, and being able to work at the famed Lindsay Park for 6 years was a privilege and the best start in the thoroughbred industry that anyone could wish for. A Legend, indeed!