Day At The Track

Staff at Nevele R Stud are to be laid-off

12:12 AM 01 Feb 2013 NZDT
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Nevele R Stud

Located in Prebbleton, Nevele R Stud comprises of over 500 acres of quality pasture and currently stands eight harness racing stallions, including Changeover, McArdle and Live Or Die.

The stud was founded more than three decades ago by Bob McArdle and the late Wayne Francis due to a chance meeting between the Tasmanian Bloodstock Agent (Bob McArdle) and the Christchurch businessman (Wayne Francis) in the early 1970s which resulted in the pair establishing the farm in which they named after their foundation sire Nevele Romeo, whom Bob had sourced out from North America.

The pair's skills in stallion selection and business saw the stud flourish into what it is today- One of Australasia's best standardbred breeding farms.

Whilst both operating Nevele R Stud both McArdle and Francis set up their own successful broodmare bands-Francis under the Spreydon Lodge 'Franco' banner and McArdle under the 'Bromac' banner of Bromac Lodge.

Now McArdle is solely focusing on his Bromac Lodge, and Nevele R Stud is now owned purely by the estate of the late Wayne Francis. Board members of the estate have decided to combine Haswell's Spreydon Lodge and Nevele R Stud and put them under the same banner as a cost saving method.

The start of this merge and cost saving method has seen Nevele R Stud lay off all their staff and ask them to re-apply for their positions.

"Basically everyone will be getting their jobs back it's just a restructure really."

If there were 16 employees before there might only be 12 jobs left after the restructure," said Nevele R Studs General Manager Peter O'Rourke.

"Hopefully a couple of people will take redundancy or be happy to take seasonal work," he added.

O'Rourke's job is also in the firing line; he is likely to stay on at Nevele R Stud in some capacity, but if it is in his current role as General manager that remains to be seen.

Meanwhile, Wayne Francis's daughter Helena Francis has been given the role of the overseer for the merge and restructure.

Spreydon Lodge trainer Steven McRae confirmed nothing too much will be changing with his operation.

"All the staff at Spreydon will be staying on, and we will be keeping the same approach towards the future," said McRae.

"No one knows 100% what will end up happening with this merge, but we will be staying put in Haswell for at least the next four or five years until Spreydon Lodge is Subdivided off," he added.

by Mitchell ROBERTSON

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