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This article is one of 34 vendors exclusively in our MMGC 2023 souvenir edition ! This edition is not for retail sale and you can only get one by subscribing to BLUEBLOODS
Cressfield’s Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale graduates have been in the winner’s circle lately with Gr2 winner Jamaea (Headwater) winning the 2021 Gr2 Furious Stakes and Gr2 Percy Sykes Stakes, while four year-old mare Hellfest (Fastnet Rock) won the 2022 Gr.3 Typhoon Tracy Stakes. Group placed winner Aquagirl is still racing, and won the 2021 Magic Millions Ballarat 3YO & 4YO Classic, as well as placing in the Gr.3 Quezette Stakes earlier in her career.
Bluebloods spoke to Cressfield’s General Manager Wayne Bedggood.
What is the best horse you have sold through Magic Millions?
I think that Egyptian Symbol wins out here although technically she was not sold – so perhaps it is actually Missrock! Anyway, both were pretty handy race mares and are now making a name as broodmares.
When assessing breeding which influences/key horses do you mainly look for?
The broodmare sire is very important to me, as are line breeding and in breeding crosses; but I am more swayed by the dam’s overall pedigree and the strength in her maternal lines.
Do you still get butterflies as your yearling enters the ring?
Absolutely, especially when the expectations are extremely high! I’ll probably give the game away when I don’t get nervous anymore.
What makes Magic Millions at the Gold Coast such a success?
It’s a combination of factors that include but are not limited to;
- The Summer Holidays which encourages people to bring their families for a vacation whilst incorporating the ‘work’ of sales,
- The generally beautiful weather where a swim in the ocean
- or walk on the beach can be had before and after sales days,
- Most forms of entertainment, feasting and recreation can be found within minutes of the complex,
- And of course, an incredible and very lucrative racing carnival and sale that cement it all together.
The 2023 draft from Cressfield is an opportunity for breeders to buy into some incredible families, with only four colts among the draft of twelve yearlings. The headline act, on paper, is the second foal of Gr1 Robert Sangster Stakes winning sprinter Spright (Hinchinbrook), and this colt, Lot 417, is by Australia’s hottest stallion I Am Invincible, making him a three-quarter brother to group placed two year-old winner Mine Two (I Am Invincible). Spright’s first foal is a two year-old colt by Zoustar.
An All Too Hard filly, Lot 288, from Gr1 winner Regimental Gal has huge residual value, especially given that this yearling is a half-sister to Gr.3 winner Lilliburlero and stakes placed winner Vimy, who is the dam of Gr2 Pago Pago Stakes winner Souchez. Lilliburlero has a colt by first season sire Pierata in this draft, and he is Lot 66 and a half-brother to stakes placed winner Regimental Band.
Selected by Aquis Farm’s Jon Davis as the best of the Pieratas in this sale, Lot 274 is a filly who is the second foal out of Gr2 winner Quilista. Quilista won nine races, four at black type level, and is a half-sister to multiple stakes winner Red Can Man, with both being out of early maturing stakes placed winner Brocky’s Ace.
Gr2 winner Wild Rain won eight races, four at stakes level, as well as placing in the Gr1 AJ Moir Stakes. Her Snitzel filly, Lot 55, is her fourth foal, and she is from the family of Northerly and current group winning sprinter Overpass.
Cressfield bred Headwater and have done well with his progeny including Magic Millions graduates Jamaea and Aquagirl. Lot 890 is a Headwater filly from Gr.3 winner Galapagos Girl, who is the dam of Listed winner Villami (Foxwedge) and group placed winner Aquagirl (Headwater), as well as six other winners.
A pair of Merchant Navy yearlings will go through the ring only a few lots apart, with the filly from Listed winner Shoboard being Lot 381, followed by the colt from Listed placed winner Shrill (Shamardal) as Lot 384. Shoboard won the Listed Keith Mackay Stakes at two and is from the family of Star Satire, Satin Shoes, Zarzuela, and Serious Satire, and at stud, she has left five winners including Listed winner Granny Red Shoes (Not a Single Doubt). Shrill raced in England, winning twice at two, and placing in the Listed Tipperary Stakes. Her Merchant Navy three year-old, Calico Jack, is a recent winner.
Other sires represented are Brutal (Lot 1079), Deep Field (Lot 578), Extreme Choice (Lot 69), and Press Statement (Lot 1030).
Where is the most unusual place you’ve visited?
There are so many places that spring to mind but one that stands out was when my wife, Michelle, and I visited the Zenko-ji Temple in the Nagano Prefecture in Japan. Michelle is very claustrophobic and detests dark, tight and confined spaces but somehow I talked her into walking with me through the passageway which runs below the ‘Hibutsu Buddha’, enclosed within the temple. There are other people in the space with you so you can’t push forward and you can’t go back. Once you are in the tunnel it is absolute darkness and you lose all sense of direction and spatial awareness. Shuffling along this very narrow passageway, face pressed up against the wall feeling for the allegedly ‘hidden door and secret key’ contained within while trying to move the immovable object that was my wife beside me, was quite an experience – and never has a 20 metre excursion seemed so endless!
What’s the coldest you’ve ever been?
I remember getting off a heavy-mouthed race-horse (a bad puller) at Kilmore race track one winters’ morning around 4.00 am and just sitting on the stable passageway in tears as my hands thawed out and the pins and needles replaced the numbness in my fingers from the extreme cold!
Do you prefer fishing or football, details please?
What an evil question – no-one should have to make a choice like this! These are two my favourite recreational pastimes and I am practising both as often as possible in readiness for retirement. To be clear, I am an ardent supporter of footy nowadays – not a participant.
What’s one thing your dogs could say that would completely ruin your image if they could talk?
If my dog could say, “It was him!” then I am guessing that I wouldn’t get away with saying, “Don’t look at me, it was the dog!”