The Swettenham Stud Summer Championship has been an unqualified success since its inception two years ago and the Melbourne Racing Club has announced its relationship with Adam Sangster’s Swettenham Stud has been extended by an additional two years with the third series kicking off at Caulfield on December 26.
The Boxing Day opener is the first of 10 legs to be run at Caulfield, Moonee Valley, Mornington and Flemington. The leading point-scorers will then do battle in a $100,000 Final at Caulfield on February 1.
The winning owner will also secure a free service to Swettenham Stud’s Melbourne Cup winner Americain which is valued at $13,750.
Over Quota (Testa Rossa) won the 2011-12 Swettenham Stud Championship and, apart from earning over $122,000 in prizemoney during the series, his Bairnsdale based owners Arno Blank and Judy Bourke received a free service to Swettenham’s Royal Ascot star Equiano.
“The series suited us because Over Quota is so tough,” winning trainer Mark Webb said. “It’s a fantastic concept.”
Over Quota went on to frank the form in the Kilmore Cup the following month and his owners sent their mare Miss Panama (Not A Single Doubt) to Equiano.
The 2012-13 Swettenham Stud Championship was upgraded to include the LR John Dillon Stakes at Caulfield on Australia Day as the last heat of the Series. Le Remas (Al Samer) won the Dillon Stakes and then claimed the Championship in a cliff-hanger for Maldon based owner-breeder-trainer Brian McKnight and his wife Judy.
McKnight thanked the Melbourne Racing Club and Swettenham for sponsoring the Summer Championship. “It’s a great initiative,” he said. “There aren’t enough people like Adam Sangster and enough organisations like Swettenham in racing.”
The McKnights won a service to Swettenham sire Master Of Design and sent Le Remas’s dam Tilden Lady (Zabeel) to the Group 1 winning sprinter this spring.
Melbourne Racing Club CEO, Brodie Arnhold, said that the club was thrilled about the evolution of the Swettenham Stud Summer Championship and the continual support of Swettenham Stud.
“It is incumbent on racing bodies like ours to implement new programs to generate interest in the sport and our racing product outside of popular carnival times, and the Swettenham Stud Summer Championship, now in its third year, is a great example of that,” Arnhold said.
“To be able to partner with an organisation as respected as Swettenham Stud in doing so is doubly pleasing. Swettenham is a leader in its field, and it’s easy to see why. It’s prepared to innovate, try new things and unite with other industry bodies for greater good.
“Most importantly, this year’s Swettenham Stud Summer Championship looks set to be the most successful yet, with the lure of a free service to Americain very tempting, and representative of Swettenham’s generosity.”
A social media competition will be run in conjunction with the Series offering a lucky group the chance to win a VIP tour of Swettenham Stud at Nagambie.
The Melbourne Racing Club and Swettenham Stud websites and social media will have regular updates during the Swettenham Stud Summer Championship.