Var

Var is Champion sire for 2 year olds!

The first of August was an auspicious day for Avontuur Stud Farm as the great news arrived that Var is the SA Champion Sire of two year olds for the season 2016/17.

As GM Pippa Mickleburgh says:  “We have never ever had a stallion win this title on Avontuur before so it is a testament to everyone’s belief that our boy would eventually do it for us.” She also commented on the late owner, Tony Taberer’s confidence that the stallion would come through for the farm and SA, and that he had the foresight to purchase this incredible horse all those years ago.

The cherry on top is that Avontuur’s second stallion Oratorio finished up as the leading first season sire on % winners to runners, which is an awesome start to the big O’s South African career after  such an outstanding record overseas. 

Everyone was enjoying a glass or two of Avontuur’s own MCC earlier today and revelling in the good news with the Stud team.  But, as Pippa says wryly, “ We’re all absolutely thrilled with the news and it deserves a party but today also marks the start of the next racing season; all statistics begin again!”

We believe our two outstanding sires will keep on delivering the good stats and we wish everyone well for the next season.

 

Avontuur sires in the running for top spots!

The 2016-2017 season is fast drawing to a close in the Southern Hemisphere, and champion sires will soon be crowned.  Both Var and Oratorio are in the running and we are holding thumbs for good results.

Var has enjoyed a remarkable run with his 2yos and the son of Forest Wildcat looks on course to end Captain Al’s eight year reign. Var, whose juveniles have earned R2.45 million, has been represented by 20 individual juvenile winners thus far, headed by Gr2 Durban Golden Horseshoe winner, Purple Diamond, and Gr1 Tsogo Sun Gold Medallion runner up, Varallo.

With two major 2yo races yet to be run, the first crop sires title appears to lie among What A Winter, Oratorio, and Twice Over. What A Winter is the leading first crop sire by stakes winners (3) and by prize money, with Oratorio and What A Winter being joint leading first crop sires by individual winners –the pair have eight apiece.

 

Story courtesy of Sporting Post.

Var and Oratorio start July off with a bang!

What a fantastic weekend we had in Durban last weekend, with Purple Diamond (Var) and Ancestry (Oratorio) going head-to-head in the Golden Horseshoe and two Var’s coming in in fourth and fifth place respectively. This has led to Var now sitting at the top of 2yo sire’s lists which is always a thrill for any breeder.

 

She’s a Giver ran a brilliant second to Bella Bella in the Gr 1 Garden Province Stakes and Chantyman did us proud as well! 

 

What a start to July 2017!

July weekend looking good for Avontuur!

The first weekend in July in South Africa is all about racing, stunning thoroughbreds, glamorous celebs and the general public enjoying the balmy winter weather in Durban.

The TBA KZN Yearling Sale starts off the programme on Thursday the 29th, and this year there are five Oratorio’s and three Var’s in the catalogue which we are looking forward to supporting. With 2Yo Ancestry’s (Oratorio x A Daughter’s Legacy) win recently, and the ongoing excellent performances of the Var’s, this crop should keep the buyers lining up,” says Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh. 

On Saturday 1 July the biggest race day in the country will take place and although Avontuur does not have a runner in the big one, we do have lots of interest in most of the action taking place. In the main race, our Avontuur-sponsored jockeys will be showing off their talent with MJ Byleveld on Master Sabina, Lyle Hewittson on French Navy for the in-form Tarry yard and Callan Murray jetting in from the East to steer last year’s winner, The Conglomerate for the Ramsden yard.

In the Grade 2 Golden Horseshoe over 1400m we’re looking forward to seeing Ancestry up against Varallo and Varimas. In the 8th race it’s Isca, Our Destiny, Horse Guards, Varbration and Attenborough taking on each other, making this race of only 12 contestants, nearly half-filled with horses linked in some way with Avontuur.  In the Grade 1 Garden Province Stakes over a mile, Avontuur-bred She’s a Giver will be strutting her stuff. 

All in all a full and exciting weekend ahead and we wish all the owners, breeders, jockeys, horses and punters a successful one!

Caption:   Ancestry as a yearling at Avontuur in the paddocks.

 

 

 

An affordable Var is a possibility!

If you would love to acquire a Var for your racing stable, here is your chance!  See you this weekend in Durbanville!

Cape Yearling Sale video – Watch now

Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh chats about the 4 yearlings set for the Cape Sale this coming weekend.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajP-lJlLyGg&feature=youtu.be

 

Nine Yearlings Fly our Flag at CPYS 17

On Monday, 16 January nine yearlings will take a big step into the limelight and leave their home for the bright lights of the Cape Town Convention Centre and the annual Cape Premier Yearling Sale,  which takes place on 21 and 22 January 2017.

“Nine of our Yearlings were selected for the Sale and although the draft is particularly good this year, I feel that Lot 129 Carioca (Var x Miss Epanema) is an outstanding high-quality filly who oozes class and a great attitude,” comments Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh.   “Amongst the colts I really like Lot 210 Montego Bay (Var x Torra Bay) as he is a good size for a first foal and has a great international pedigree.”

Montego Bay

Montego Bay

We kick off the action at this international event on Day 1,  as the first yearling up for sale is our own “Little Sparrow”, an attractive and athletic filly by speedster sire Var out of Bambina Stripes (ARG).  Our second yearling up for sale on the first day is Lot 24, a filly called Counter Fate from the first crop of Master of my Fate.   Pippa describes her as a tall flashy sort who is a really good advert for her sire.   The last filly in the draft is Lot 218, Operetta (Oratorio x Varsity Queen) who is a tough powerful mover.

Lot 224 Euphoric (Oratorio x Without Malice) is last up in the Sale on Day 2 for Avontuur and according to Pippa he is powerful and athletic with great speed.

The excellent draft is completed by three Var colts.  Lot 133, Provocateur is out of Model IQ and he is big, powerful and upstanding – typical of the family.  Lot 146 Whitehaven (Var x Paradise Beach), is the first living foal out of a superbly bred mare and is a speedy, robust and attractive colt.  Last but not least is Barista (Var x Mochachino) who is a typically precocious Var type with an athletic workmanlike attitude.

Please visit us at our Hospitality Lounge in Hall 3 from Wednesday 18 January right through the Sale until Sunday, the 22nd.  We’ve got great Avontuur wine or soft drinks and view the great yearlings on offer at your leisure.   If you want to visit the Farm for a private viewing before the Sale, contact Pippa on stud@avontuurestate.co.za to book a slot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 Avontuur-bred runners in KZN Gr1

With 3 Avontuur-bred runners in Saturday’s Sprint extravaganza at Scottsville in Durban, it’s no wonder we’re totally confused about who to cheer for in the exciting R600 000 Gr 1 Tsogo Sun Gold Medallion.

First up is Rivarine, who is flush with success after being awarded champion 2 yo colt at the recent Highveld Future Season Awards.

Good friend Dennis Drier has high hopes for 2015 Durbanville Yearling Sales purchase, Horse Guards and he is an expert on this race,so not many will be betting against him and his team bringing home the accolades again.

Horse-Guards-640x441

Stunning son of Var Paper Writer is the last Avontuur-bred entrant and with his speedster genes, should be a worthy contender for first place.

What a day’s racing it will be for us and we wish all participants and their connections the best of luck.

 

 

 

Emperor’s Select Sale a triumph for Avontuur

Although believing that an outstanding draft of five colts was put up for auction for their first outing at the Emperor’s Palace Select Yearling Sale, Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh could still barely believe the results of Friday, 15 April 2016!

The top prices of the Sale were achieved by three Avontuur yearlings, and all five went at an extraordinary average of R1 965 000,  with an aggregate achieved of R9 825 000.

The two magnificent Oratorio colts, Mardi Gras and Graduate (Cover pic with two grooms) were joint sales-toppers at R3,2 million and the demand for the internationally proven son of Danehill’s progeny is expected to continue at the National Yearling Sale at the end of the month, where 15 more Oratorio’s are offered.  The third highest priced lot is the R3 million paid by Mayfair Speculators for Talk Of The Town, a son of Var out of a Street Cry mare – a fellow with a stallion pedigree if ever we have seen one.

Mardi Gras in the paddocks at Avontuur

Mardi Gras in the paddocks at Avontuur

 

The results are hardly surprising given Avontuur’s time honoured philosophy of sending the best to the best, world-class farm management and providing the pastoral environmental platform for the launch of their fine wines and fast horses.

“Selling racehorses is not unlike training them. The fundamentals have to be in place and the stock is important. Programming and placement at sales is also key. Pushing horses that are not ready can only put you on the back foot. I think the stars were simply aligned on Friday and everything fell so neatly into place,” Pippa explained when asked about her thoughts after the Sale.

With eight yearlings ready for the National Yearling Sale at month-end, Pippa is moving across to the TBA Sales Complex for the next challenge.  Five Var’s, and Oratorio a Jay Peg and Lot 398, a stunning colt by Gimmethegreenlight out of Valeta named Keyboogie are on their way up to Gauteng this week.

The Avontuur Hospitality Lounge will be open for viewings from Thursday, and Pippa and her team look forward to welcoming you there.

NYS Hospitality Lounge now open for viewings

After the success of Avontuur’s first foray into the Emperor’s Palace Select Yearling Sale earlier this month, Pippa and the team from Avontuur is ready for visitors, viewings and general hospitality at the TBA Sales Complex in Germiston.

The National Yearling Sale  offers 8 yearlings, and is a mixed bag with Var’s ruling the roost, although an excellent Oratorio and some exciting new blood in the form of sire Gimmethegreenlight and the in-the-news Jay Peg should tickle the buyers’ fancy.

Ladies first, and with four fillies getting ready for the event Avontuur is especially excited about Lot 422 Kindavar, who is the first foal of the Jet Master mare Without Malice,  an 8 times race winner herself.  “She is tall, a good walker and my pick of the fillies,” Pippa says.

The rest of the Var fillies include Lot 21 Sweet Treat who is correct and athletic and a half-sister to Vous et Var and Lot 163, the first foal from Jeter, who is a real speedball, and closely related to Le Clos, currently proving his class on course.  The last filly (Lot 227)  is by upcoming sire Jay Peg, a tall racy sort who is the close family of Varbration and Captain’s Lullabye.

The only Oratorio on this Sale is Lot 314 Chantyman out of Sea of Calm (USA),  a high quality colt who is a good mover and halfbrother to Balkan  and Princess Katrina.  Pippa commented especially on Lot 398 Keyboogie (Gimmethegreenlight x Valeta) and said he is a very flashy, good looking  colt, who is a half-brother to the exciting 3yo Val et Al and should attract a lot of attention.

Duffield (Lot 452) is a precocious full brother to Twitter (Var x Avian Talk), and is a flashy speed machine.   Hampton Court (Lot 192) by Var is a classy, attractive medium-sized colt who is a nice trainer’s horse out of London Belle, now retired as a brood mare.

“I believe Sweet Treat and Kindavar are outstanding on the fillies side, and the three colts which get my pick are Chantyman, Duffield and Keyboogie. The Avontuur Stud Lounge Hospitality area is open for viewings and socialising from 21 April and we look forward to welcoming all interested parties from then,” Pippa concluded.