All Girl Group and a Golden Boy Star at Stonewall

Tara Madgwick - Thursday November 23

Popular racehorse owner/ breeder Linda Huddy is a long time passionate supporter of all things showjumping and her Peachester Lodge fielded teams in both the Maiden and Racing Teams Challenges at the TSHA National Titles last weekend and while those riders had to settle for minor placings it was her secondary all girl team that took the top prize of $63,000 plus rugs and garlands.

Linda Huddy accepts the winning owner trophy for the Racing Teams Challenge.

Riding for Team Make an Offer, a start-up real estate company in which Huddy also has an interest, were Holly Penfold on One Inch Punch (Teofilo (IRE), Lorna Clifford on Waratone (Mossman), Sasha Smith on Venificus (Brief Truce (IRE) and Kadell Sykes, who rode Rocket of Gold (Gold Bold and Rich (USA), the only palomino thoroughbred competing at this show.

Girl power!

Three of the girls are from Huddy’s home state of Queensland, while the fourth Sasha Smith travelled from South Australia for the show on a horse that also competed last year for his previous owner Tanya Johnston.

Lorna, Sasha and 13year-old Kadell all purchased their horses as going ready-made jumpers, while Gold Coast based Holly has done all the work on her horse One Inch Punch aka Bruce after first meeting him at the stables of Toby Edmonds where she was working back in 2017.

“He came to Toby as a tried horse and was sort of not one thing or the other, not really a stayer and not quick enough to sprint, but he still won some races for us and retired perfectly sound at age seven,” Holly recalled.

“He’s a beautiful horse with a real Galileo head, so athletic and lovely and quiet. I was thrilled when the owners decided to retire him to me rather than selling him on to keep racing which they could easily have done.”

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That does look like a Galileo head!

Bruce took to jumping like a duck to water and made a very smooth transition to the equestrian arena.

“He was very easy to train and while he has his hot moments, he would never ever do anything wrong,” said Holly.

“We jumped in a team here last year, but didn’t get a ribbon so to come back and win is just amazing.”

Holly was the senior rider in the Make an Offer team with the other girls aged between 13 and 19, Kadell the youngest.

“When we had to nominate our order of riders to jump, Kadell and her parents were adamant they wanted to go last as she was also competing in the hacking classes earlier in the day,” Holly said.

“So many people said to me ‘why have you got the 13YO  kid riding last?’… in a high pressure class when you have to jump clear to win, do you really want your least experienced rider under that sort of pressure.

“I guess we never thought we’d be that competitive, so it probably wouldn’t matter, but as it turned out it did matter and Kadell went out and jumped a perfect double clear to give us the win!”

Kadell Sykes and Rocket of Gold.

One gets the feeling we will be seeing a lot more of Kadell Sykes and Rocket of Gold aka Brandy, who she’s been riding since she was 11. He had a couple of years of re-training under Rebecca Bates after retiring out of racing and has taken Kadell from jumping 60 to 70cm classes all the way up to 1.25m, so the sky really is the limit for this dynamic duo!

FUN FACTS ABOUT THE HORSES

13YO gelding One Inch Punch (Teofilo (IRE) is by the same sire as Melbourne Cup winner Without a Fight (IRE), but is a much speedier beast winning six metro races up to 1500m and over $200,000 in prizemoney.

 

15YO Gelding Waratone (Mossman) was a talented stayer winning over $245,000 and was second in the 2013 Group II SAJC Adelaide Cup. He also won the Puissance jump at this show last year with previous owner Sarah Weiss and was equal third again this year for Lorna.

 

15YO gelding Veneficus (Brief Truce (IRE) won his maiden at Ballarat and nothing else from 14 starts, but has been a star jumper in his home state of South Australia and was Best OTT at the SA State Championships in 2019.

 

9YO Rocket of Gold (Gold Bold and Rich (USA) is the baby of team like his rider and had 36 race starts winning just one, a maiden at a place called Springsure in Central Queensland. His talents clearly lie in other areas as he is a brilliant jumper and part time model for Magic Millions carrying Zara Tindall in the barrier draw beach gallop in 2020.

From the pedigree perspective he’s also interesting being one of the few true palomino thoroughbreds with the colouring coming from his US bred sire, but on the female side of his pedigree there is also plenty of intrigue.  His dam Easy Streets is by champion sire Not a Single Doubt and she traces back to a very famous broodmare in Kingston Rose.

Owned by the late David Hains of Kingston Town fame, Kingston Rose produced two champion fillies in Spirit of Kingston and Rose of Kingston, the dam of Melbourne Cup winner Kingston Rule, so Rocket of Gold has the blood of champions flowing in his veins.

 

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