Pat’s A Platinum Darling

There was a temptation by Darling View Stud to sell Pat’s Got Sass when lucrative offers came sweeping in for the daughter of Patronize following her Ascot maiden win and third placings in the Group 3 Gimcrack Stakes and Group 2 Karrakatta Plate last season.

Any lingering thoughts of a sale of the filly were extinguished, when her dam Sassy Flyer succumbed to complications from a colic attack, a fortnight after birthing a filly by Playing God, several months later.

Pat’s Got Sass, being a city two-year-old winner and Group placed, and an imposing looking filly, standing at 17 hands, appeared the ideal heir apparent to Sassy Flyer.

Pat’s Got Sass underlined her talent when giving Darling View – as breeder and part-owner – a major result in the Westspeed Platinum Sires Stakes (1200m), at Racing and Wagering WA’s inaugural Westspeed Platinum Race-day at Ascot on December 18.

Brent Atwell joining his father Clive and mother Trish nine years ago at their decades’ long passion for breeding thoroughbreds was the cornerstone to Darling View transforming from a small hobby breeding concern into launching a commercial enterprise.

Pat’s Got Sass’ sire Patronize, a son of champion sire Redoute’s Choice and three-quarter brother to Exceed and Excel (Danehill), was the Mundijong farm’s hallmark stallion.

Brent Atwell was full of admiration for the courage shown by Pat’s Got Sass to score a fighting win in the Westspeed Sires Stakes.

The three-year-old was caught three deep (from her wide gate in 12) and was facing “the breeze” against a powerful Westerly, running with the leaders, before striding to a strong ¾ length win in the 1200m race.

Pat’s Got Sass was dropping back in grade and distance after her sixth in the Listed Lee-Steere Classic (1400m) and seventh in the Group 2 WA Guineas (1600m) at her previous two starts.

“We weren’t too concerned about the drop back in distance,” Atwell said.  “She hasn’t got a great turn-of-foot and we knew she would sustain the run.  She is a real trier and never gives up.

“She ran really well as a two-year-old and we had some good offers for her at the end of her campaign.  We considered the offers quite highly, but when we lost her dam…it shut the door.  Sassy Flyer was a good mare to us and we want to keep the line going.”

Atwell said a foster mother was quickly found for the Playing God filly and through a treatment the foster mare was able to produce her own milk to the orphaned foal.

Ascot Equine Vets associate veterinarian, Laura Fox, who has a special interest in equine reproduction and broodmare management, Laura Cox, performed the treatment.  “Sassy Flyer had surgery on the bowel, but unfortunately it all got the better of her,” Atwell said.  “Laura has a technique she performs on an empty mare to make them believe they have had a foal.

“It takes five to seven days for the milk to come through.  During that time we supplemented milk to the foal.  It is quite amazing the whole thing.  Thankfully we were able to save what is a lovely Playing God filly.”

Sassy Flyer produced the stakes-winner Chix Pic, who won the Listed Perth Stakes and was placed second in the Listed Belgravia Stakes.  The full brother to Pat’s Got Sass, is also trained by David Harrison.

Patronize at 19 years, is in the twilight of his career, but is still servicing mares.  He boast a 73 percent winners to runners ratio with his best winner being Miki Two Toes, who scored 13 wins, including the Listed Farnley Stakes, at his 65 starts.

“He is still covering a few mares and is looking really good,” Atwell said.  “Patronize will have nine yearlings in next February Magic Millions Perth Sale.

“We have 35 yearlings in our draft for the Perth sale and will sell under Western Alliance with Westbury Park and Eioncliff Park.  We have been leading vendor for the past three years and I think we can win the title again with a very nice lot of yearlings.

“We have a good mixture of WA-bred yearlings with yearlings by interstate sires such as Capitalist, Deep Field and Russian Revolution.”