Whoshe in New Zealand Who’s Who

Te Awamutu filly Whoshe joined an illustrious roll-call of LR Great Northern Foal Stakes winners at Ellerslie on Saturday.

Whoshe (2f Storm Creek – Lesley Coup by Prized) wouldn’t be denied on the deteriorating heavy surface to score by a long neck from A Cool Change (One Cool Cat) and Dollario (Captain Rio).

The Great Northern Foal Stakes has a history going back to the pioneering days of Kiwi immortal Desert Gold.  The first of her 30 black-type wins came in the 1914 Great Northern Foal Stakes.

Champion NZ gallopers Ammon Ra (1930), High Caste (1938) and Mainbrace (1949) also started their careers in the Ellerslie feature.  

And in the modern era, it has been won by subsequent Australian G1 winners Yir Tiz (1980), McGinty (1982) Travel Light (1985), Kaaptive Edition (1992) and La Bella Dama (2000).

Trainer Richard Otto isn’t putting Whoshe in that league.  He’s only looking as far as the LR Castletown Stakes (1200m) at Foxton on June 6.

The grey filly is raced by Red MacDonald and she’s been a winning tonic for the Ohura farmer who hasn’t been in the best of health.  “She’s my medicine and gives me a reason to get out of bed in the morning,” he said.  “I bought her as a foal for $5,000!”

MacDonald did his homework before the 2009 NZ Bloodstock National Sale and gradually crossed off the catalogue until there was just one left.  

He hitched a ride to Karaka and Bruce Sherwin of Raffles Farm gave his choice the green light on type.  “I was shaking like a leaf at the sales.  I get nervous when I buy cattle let alone horses!”

Whoshe is by former Stoney Bridge stallion Storm Creek (Storm Cat) and her dam stems from the successful black-type family of Foreign Coin (Amyntor), Shamrock Star (Germano) and Happy Festival (Grosvenor).