Shaquero and Hugh Bowman, the triumphant duo after the 2021 Magic Millions (Photo: Ross Stanley)

Gunsynd's Gossip

June 10, 2021

According to the Registrar of Racehorses, around 13,800 thoroughbreds are christened each year.

Now is a busy time for many with the task of naming rising two-year-olds – an exercise will bring satisfaction for some and disappointment for others.

In short, some first picks are successful while multiple submissions have to be endured by others.

In the past, some of the frustrating endeavours came out well in the wash.

When American entertainer Fred Astaire was in Melbourne for the filming of the 1959 movie On The Beach, his keen interest in local racing extended to buying a horse.

When trainer Stan Murphy asked him about a name, his answer was “Anything”.

The reply was taken literally and the Star Kingdom gelding collected the 1962 Ballarat Cup.

The story also goes that Tom Trevaskis had 99 refusals before breaking through with Century, a Better Boy colt that was a grand performer on the track and in the breeding barn.

Trevaskis, a 1938 Empire Games wrestling gold medallist, had more luck getting Citius for his Todman-Rich and Rare filly.

When followed by Altius and Fortius, the words are the Olympic motto that means faster, higher and stronger.

Citius turned out to be a grand filly.

Finally, David Devine – a co-owner in Shaquero – came up with a very palatable name for the 2012 Magic Millions hero: part of the sire Shalas was blended with the chardonnay known as Vinho Quero Quero.

The Registrar’s website now enables a fast check on the availability of proposed names while the Naming Policy sets out the requirements and boundaries.

A few key points are outlined below:

  • The maximum length is 18 characters (including spaces and apostrophes)
  • A name must not be difficult to read or pronounce, be contrary to law, be vulgar or have a meaning or origin that cannot be satisfactorily substantiated
  • A name cannot be repeated for 17 years after the birth of a horse with the exact same name or for 20 years after the year of birth of the youngest named produce of a horse with the same name.
  • Names of Australian Racing’s Hall of Fame inductees plus those on honour rolls for the Melbourne Cup or the post-2005 Cox Plate are the three categories that are permanently out of reach.
  • The names of Brisbane’s seven Group One events cannot be recycled for 50 years.

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Ringo’s Magic (with Ty Wheeler aboard) warming up before his recent third placing at Burrandowan (Photo: Ross Stanley)

Recent Cases At Nanango

Ringo’s Magic, one of four winners for apprentice Ty Wheeler at Nanango last month, is cleverly named.

The bay’s sire was Drumbeats while his dam Alberta Lane was by Magic Albert from Track – a pedigree that has Ringo Starr all over it.

The Beatles drummer was involved in recording a track or two in his time.

In 1967, Magical Mystery Tour was a hit for the Fab Four.

Starr was later linked to another type of track when he narrated the first two series of Thomas and Friends, the popular children’s television programme that centred around a tank engine.

* * *

Former Kumbia trainer James Curtain derived special satisfaction when Copsinthedonutshop (Hannah Phillips, $31) saluted in the opening event at Lee Park three weeks ago.

The mare, on breeding, was given an unlikely monicker.

The six-year-old is by Strategic from Fraoch, an old Scottish craft beer that was brewed using the Gaelic recipe Leann Fraoch or Heather Ale.

Fraoch, a Woodlands Stud product, is a daughter of the Grand Lodge mare called Heather.

While “cops in the donut shop” does have significance in American culture, James Curtain always wanted to name a horse in that way because it was a line in The Bangles’ 1986 hit song “Walk Like An Egyptian”.

The kudos for the successful feat belong to Curtain’s brother Laurie, the trainer whose main job is operating heavy equipment at the Meandu Mine.

The chestnut’s only previous appearance was for trainer Tom Dougall at Dalby way back in November 2017. She had leg issues and was spelled. Shin soreness became a problem and she was virtually a paddocked retiree.

Late last year, James asked Laurie if he would like to head a comeback attempt. The response was positive and Copsinthedonutshop resumed work in February.

Laurie became the main shareholder with James and two other part owners in Paul Sephton Alan Lovatt also deciding to hang in there.

Laurie’s sterling effort in preparing his charge, after a three and a half year absence, was rewarded when the mare dug really deep to prevail by a nose.

The tilt at an 800 metre in TAB grade earnt a $6700 pay cheque.

* * *

Kukeracha (James McDonald) downing Senor Toba and Explosive Jack in the 2021 Queensland derby (Photo: Ross Stanley)

A Case At Eagle Farm

Kukeracha’s Queensland Derby victory continued a wonderful run for Neville Morgan.

The prominent Brisbane-based owner has been seriously more than OK with Kolding, Kermadec, Kemalpasa and Kukeracha.

But his first love was Rangirangdo, the Pentire gelding that was on top in the 2010 Doncaster and 2011 George Ryder Stakes.

Rangirangdoo was the title of a ditty that Charlie Taylor, a Burleigh Surf Club identity and Rugby player, sang during his Changi internment.

Bill McLean, the Wallaby’s post war captain and former Burleigh captain, helped spread the song that became well known in both sporting circles.

* * *

Coming Up

  • June 25: The final of the $200,000 Battle of the Bush in Brisbane.
  • July 3: South Burnett Race Club meeting at Wondai.
  • August 7: Nanango Cup Day at Lee Park

In the interim, good luck to those in the naming game!

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