Day At The Track

Somebeachsomewhere not shuttling this year

10:22 PM 21 Jun 2013 NZST
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World champion Somebeachsomewhere
World champion Somebeachsomewhere - Horse of the Year
Nigel Soult Photo

Former champion pacer and now star harness racing sire, Somebeachsomewhere, will not be shuttling down under this season.

The son of Mach Three stood on farm, for the first time down under, at Empire Stallions in Melbourne last breeding season.

He served 75 mares in New Zealand last season and, at $12,500, was the most expensive stallion available to breeders, costing more than super-sires Bettor's Delight and Christian Cullen.

But Empire Stallions confirmed this week that for the simple reason that Somebeachsomewhere had become too valuable, he will not be shuttling this year.

"He will not be physically returning down under this season," Empire boss David James told the Racing Times from New York.

"But his frozen semen will be available."

Somebeachsomewhere's frozen semen was available in New Zealand the previous three seasons but he served just 30 mares over the course of them.

He sired his first New Zealand winner at Ashburton on June 2, when the Mark Purdon-trained Someardensomewhere smashed the New Zealand record for two-year-olds over 2400m, running 2:56.3.

It makes for a forgettable winter for Empire, whose other flagship stallion Rocknroll Hanover, died in Pennsylvania in March after serving 49 New Zealand mares last season.

Meanwhile, Nevele R Stud has confirmed that Vintage Master, who stood his debut down under season last year, will not be returning this year.

He served 56 mares, but Nevele R spokeswoman Nikki Reed said that the support from outside breeders was not enough to justify bringing him back this year.

Reed also dismissed speculation surrounding the fertility of Christian Cullen, who stands at Nevele R Stud for the first time, this season.

"He won't be having a reduced book at this stage," she said.

"His on-farm percentage was pretty good at Wai Eyre Farm last year, so we may look at only serving mares here at the stud or at one or two approved bases around the country."

Christian Cullen's live foal percentage was 57.8 per cent last year, down from 69.4 per cent two years earlier and a peak of 86.6 per cent in 2003.

GARRICK KNIGHT

Fairfax NZ News

 

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