Another in the Telegraph's weekly series on local thoroughbred breeders - this time Moonee Valley Racing Club chairman Bob Scarborough's property.By Alan McLean
This series of articles has featured a range of people and their roles in thoroughbred breeding. Literally hundreds of people are involved in one of the region’s most important economic activities and we have met with a small sample of people who both contribute and derive benefit from the concentration of thoroughbred operations.
The growth of this activity between Seymour and Nagambie has come as no surprise to Wood Nook’s manager Bob Norris.
‘‘What we have locally is close to the perfect combination of temperate climate, good soils and reliable rainfall for pasture growth, topped off with irrigation from the Goulburn River,’’ Norris said.
An 18-year role at Wood Nook, preceded by involvement with horses at Red Hill on the Mornington Peninsula, has given Norris a real insight into the growth and development of the thoroughbred industry.
‘‘The natural assets, plus the profile generated by locally-bred horses such as Black Caviar, give our district a distinct advantage,’’ he said.
‘‘And all things being equal, there seems no reason why this shouldn’t continue in future years.’’
Norris’ current role has responsibility for 20 brood mares owned by Bob and Rosemary Scarborough. Bob Scarborough is the chairman of the Moonee Valley Racing Club and an avid student of thoroughbred breeding, particularly involving stallions which proved themselves on the racetrack. His mares are regular visitors to stallions based in the Hunter Valley, such as the popular and successful Fastnet Rock.
Scarborough agreed with Norris in terms of the district’s natural advantages.
‘‘Successful horse breeding has occurred here for more than 100 years, so I guess that says it all,’’ he said.
Asked whether he has any budding champions on the spring racing stage, Scarborough anticipates more MVRC hosting as chairman than starring as an owner.
‘‘Best we can hope for is our mare Balusch in a support race on Cox Plate day,’’ he said.
Wood Nook has been owned by Scarborough since 1994, and has had several previous identities, owners and activities. Once known as The Nook, and for a time Great Missenden Stud, the property has raised cattle, bred show-jumping horses (including Andrew Hoy’s mount when he won the gold medal at the Sydney Olympics in 2000) and now some of Australia’s most successful thoroughbreds.
Scarborough horses have won a Victoria Derby (with Hit the Roof), an Australian Guineas (Light Fantastic), a Toorak Handicap (Marble Halls) and a Blue Diamond Stakes (Sleek Chassis), among others. Many of the horses bred at Wood Nook have featured at annual yearling sales in Melbourne, Sydney and the Magic Millions auction on the Gold Coast.
Scarborough has been interested and involved in the horse game for more than 50 years and the 120
Van de Pol’s Pet, Horse and Farm invites everyone to dress in their best Black Caviar inspired attire to celebrate the statue’s reveal.
Wear salmon and black to win.
Judging and announcement of winners will be at 10.30
You must be there on time to be in with a chance of winning.
You can also meet the connections of the Black Caviar camp including Peter Moody, Luke Nolan, the syndicate of owners, breeder and Gilgai Farm owner Rick Jamieson and author and broadcaster Gerard Whateley.
Don’t miss the fantastic opportunity to celebrate Black Caviar, the world champion sprinter.
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