Proud Record for Pencarrow Graduates
05 January 2021
With Pencarrow star Supera (NZ) (Savabeel) narrowly missing Group One victory in the Zabeel Classic by a whisker on Boxing Day at Ellerslie, she very nearly headlined the flurry of fresh winners for the stud over recent days, shining a light on the depth of ongoing success across a wide range of Pencarrow’s families as we begin the countdown to Karaka 2021.
Pencarrow Stud’s yearlings at Karaka 2021 have the star quality to turn heads in their own right, but another major drawcard is the outstanding success across multiple generations of horses born and raised at the respected nursery.
Over the three decades since it was established by Sir Peter Vela and his late brother Philip, Pencarrow Stud has developed into one of the most well-respected names on the New Zealand thoroughbred landscape.
Twice New Zealand Breeders of the Year, the Velas have bred no fewer than 19 individual Group One winners among a star-studded roll of honour.
The instantly recognisable name on that high-class list is the immortal Ethereal (NZ) (Rhythm), whose legacy is enshrined with a statue at Pencarrow Stud.
Born at Pencarrow in the spring of 1997, Ethereal soared to international fame four years later with superb victories in the Group One Caufield Cup (2400m) and Melbourne Cup (3200m). She was the 11th horse to complete that legendary double in the same season, and no other horse has achieved it in the 19 years since.
Ethereal (NZ) (Rhythm)
Overall, Ethereal won four Group One races among her total of eight wins, amassing more than $5 million in prize-money. She was Champion Stayer in Australia and New Zealand in the 2001-02 season.
Pencarrow has also been a superb source of success in the three-year-old classic races that are coveted throughout the racing world – Derby, Oaks and Guineas races. Graduates have won several of these prestigious races on both sides of the Tasman and also in South Africa, including:
- Group One New Zealand Derby (2400m) – Cavallieri (NZ) (Gaius), who was sold at Karaka in 1990.
- Group One New Zealand Oaks (2400m) – Vapour Trail (NZ) (Jetball), who was New Zealand Bloodstock Filly of the Year in 2002.
- Group One New Zealand 1000 Guineas (1600m) – the Riccarton classic holds a special race in Pencarrow’s history, with sparkling victories by Noble Heights (NZ) (Sir Tristram), Clear Rose (NZ) (Deputy Governor) and Insouciant (NZ) (Keeper).
- Group One New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m) – there was an unforgettable, dominant four-length romp by Darci Brahma (NZ) (Danehill), who was sold through Pencarrow’s Karaka yearling draft in 2004. A decade later, the 2000 Guineas was won in similarly emphatic fashion by Turn Me Loose (NZ) (Iffraaj), who was bred by Mana Park’s George and Maryanne Simon with their leased Pencarrow mare Indomitable (NZ) (Danehill).
- Group One Thousand Guineas (1600m) – the prestigious fillies’ classic at Caulfield was won by Riverina Charm (NZ) (Sir Tristram), an outstanding racehorse who won a total of four Group One races including three in Australia.
- Group One Rosehill Guineas (2000m) – this Sydney classic also features on Riverina Charm’s CV, while another Pencarrow graduate to win the Rosehill Guineas was De Beers (NZ) (Quest for Fame), who was sold at Karaka in 2004.
- Group One Australasian Oaks (2000m) – the Adelaide showpiece delivered Group One glory for Grand Echezeaux (NZ) (Zabeel), who went on to become a wonderful member of Pencarrow’s broodmare band with four black-type performers among her five winning foals.
- Group One South Australian Oaks (2400m) – Marmalitre (NZ) (Wolverton) won the Adelaide feature in 1987.
- Group One South African Fillies’ Guineas (1600m) & Group One Cape Fillies’ Guineas (1600m) – both won in the 2000-01 season by the exceptional Hoeberg (NZ) (Maroof). She was a $350,000 purchase at Karaka in 1999.
The Stud has also bred and raised top flight performers of recent seasons like Eleonora (NZ), Burgundy (NZ), Silver Eclipse (NZ), Dolmabache (NZ), Our Ella Belle (NZ), Darci's Dream (NZ), Rhythm to Spare (NZ), Wildflower (NZ) and Te Akau Coup (NZ).
Pencarrow’s proven track record has generated hot demand in the sale ring, with more than half a dozen yearlings reaching the $1 million mark.
That group includes the 2004 sale-topper Darci Brahma, who put Pencarrow’s name in lights in the sale ring, on the racetrack and at stud.
By Danehill out of Group One-winning Pencarrow homebred Grand Echezeaux, Darci Brahma was bought by Te Akau Racing principal David Ellis for $1.1 million.
Darci Brahma won 10 of his 19 starts and more than $1.2 million, including Group One victories in Brisbane’s TJ Smith Classic (1600m) and the New Zealand 2000 Guineas (1600m), Otaki-Maori WFA (1600m), Telegraph Handicap (1200m) and Waikato Sprint (1200m). He placed in another five Group One races including the Australian Guineas (1600m), and was named New Zealand’s Champion 2YO and Champion 3YO.
Super sire Darci Brahma
Since retiring to The Oaks Stud in 2007, Darci Brahma has sired 477 winners from 655 runners including 50 individual stakes winners. Nashville (NZ), Julinsky Prince (NZ), Recite (NZ), Catalyst (NZ), Risque (NZ), Artistic (NZ), Irish Fling (NZ), Devise (NZ) and Kahma Lass (NZ) have all won at the highest level in New Zealand, with Gust of Wind (NZ) doing so in Australia and D B Pin (NZ) in Hong Kong.
Darci Brahma has been champion sire in Singapore six times, champion sire in Malaysia, and a two-time champion sire of three-year-olds in New Zealand. He has finished second or third on the New Zealand sires’ list in six of the last seven years.
Other superstar Pencarrow graduates include the multiple Group One winner Star Dancer (Star Watch), electrifying sprinter Guiseppina (NZ) (Johar), Sydney Group One winners Allez Suez (Canny Lad) and Linesman (NZ) (Touching Wood) and Group One-winning Tethys (NZ) (Kings Island).
Romanee Conti (NZ) (Sir Tristram) might be best remembered as the dam of Ethereal, but she was a high-quality racehorse in her own right, winning five Group and Listed races including Sydney’s Group Three Queen of the Turf Stakes (1500m), which is now a Group One race, along with flying the New Zealand flag on the world stage with a victory in the Hong Kong Cup (1800m).
With a large string around New Zealand and Australia, Pencarrow also has the likes of talented performers Supera (NZ), Zacouver (NZ), Megeve (NZ), Birdsong (NZ), Vichy (NZ), Lilikoi (NZ) and Maison Roxanne (NZ) actively adding value to the families of the young horses set to go through the ring in January.
Pencarrow will offer another quality draft of 31 yearlings in Book 1 of Karaka 2021, which runs from Sunday 24 January to Tuesday 26 January.
View the full Pencarrow Karaka 2021 Book 1 draft here.