Williams celebrates domestic success during Kentucky tour

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  • May 15, 2024
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Paul Vettise, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk
14 May 2024

Little Avondale Stud’s Sam Williams cheered home a significant black-type result for the Masterton nursery from afar.

He is currently in the United States and was trackside at Churchill Downs to see Mystik Dan win the Gr.1 Kentucky Derby (2000m) during a tour to become better acquainted with American pedigrees.

“I came over here to get more of an understanding of the genetics,” Williams said.

“I used to follow the American pedigrees a lot more closely and we all know the Northern Dancer story, and the likes of Nureyev and Seeking The Gold and those great horses before them.

“I wanted to get more in touch with the pedigrees and I had never been to Kentucky to see the Derby and to see the big farms.

“Fortunately enough, I’m up here with Michael Wallace, who bought (Triple Crown winner) Justify, and his brother David and we’re travelling around with another mate of ours, Ben Kirton. It’s been a lot of fun to see Kentucky.”

Williams took time out to watch Little Avondale graduate Karman Line triumph in the Gr.3 Rotorua Stakes (1400m) for trainers Lance O’Sullivan and Andrew Scott and jockey Masa Hashizume.

“That was a really good win and she’s always showed a lot of ability, and I know she’s had a few hiccups along the way,” Williams said.

The daughter of Myboycharlie is out of the Pierro mare World Away, who was purchased by Little Avondale for A$18,000 carrying Karman Line at the Inglis Sydney Broodmare Sale.

World Away was unraced and is out of the Gr.1 Belmont Garden City Stakes (1800m) winner Miss World and the family of the multiple Australian elite level winner Miss Finland.

“There were two mares I liked at the sale and I rang James Mitchell, who worked at Waikato Stud and then came to work for me for a year,” he said.

“He was over there working for Inglis, so he looked at her and a Snitzel mare and we bought both of them.”

The other purchase was Vienna Lady, who cost A$35,000 and has produced a trio of winners, including Reverberations who has been successful three times for trainers Danny Walker and Aaron Tata.

World Away’s second foal is the Per Incanto filly Alexandra Quick while Wexford Stables bought the daughter of Exceedance, named Tristar, at Karaka last year for $220,000 and a Per Incanto colt sold for A$200,000 at the recent Inglis Easter Yearling Sale.

“The mare missed to Savabeel last season, unfortunately she had a big cyst in her uterus that to be removed last year and we tried to get her in foal to Savabeel because it looked a good mating on paper,” Williams said.

“I’m not sure where she’ll head this year, she could go back to Per Incanto, but we’ll wait and see.”

The Allan Sharrock-trained Alexandra Quick was raced by Little Avondale with partners, but time has been called on her fledgling career due to a back issue.

“Unfortunately, I’ve had to retire her after only four starts for two wins and she was freakish, Allan thought she had Group One potential,” Williams said.

“She had kissing spine and she’ll more than likely go to Chaldean this year.”

Williams was also delighted with homebred Poukawa’s impressive first-up showing with the Per Incanto three-year-old successful on debut at Wanganui.

“He didn’t go to the yearling sale, it was the first year back after COVID so I said we should hold off and target the Ready to Run Sale,” he said.

“Chris Rutten broke him in and said this thing is a star so we sent him to Sam Beatson (Riversley Park) and he said it would top his draft.

“The horse went sore before the breeze-ups and it took us about five weeks to work it out and he had a stress fracture of the hind cannon bone.”

Poukawa was subsequently sent to trainers Guy Lowry and Leah Zydenbos and races in the Little Avondale colours with a sizeable number of partners.

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