By Duane Ranger
A hit and run mission to New Zealand by former Brisbane trainer, Shannon Price, could ultimately pay dividends for Queensland harness racing.
The now Woolloongabba based horsewomen, who trained more than 800 winners, including eight Group Ones between 1995 and 1918, is no stranger to New Zealand Yearling Sales.
In late February she flew to across the Tasman for one specific reason to buy the Father Dan Cummings (priest) co-owned and bred Bettor’s Delight bay colt, Kalani.
The colt was presented at the New Zealand Bloodstock Standarbred’s 2019 National Yearling Sales held at the Canterbury Agricultural Park.
“When I looked through the catalogue and saw that he was closely related to Caesars Folly, I just had to have him. We paid $40,000 for Caesar’s Folly at the 2009 Sale," Price said.
“He turned out to be a lovely horse who won 35 races and almost $400,000, including a few Group races in Queensland.
“We only paid $36,000 for this fella. Bidding was slow He was a Bettor’s Delight and I couldn’t believe what he sold for because he looked like a $100,000 colt to me."
Price later found out the reserve on Kalani was $35,000.
She said he was a lovely colt, however she regarded her $137,500 New Zealand yearling purchase in 2017 as potentially the best she has imported from across the ditch.
“Her name is Betamerica and she's now a 3-year-old filly by American Ideal and is out of Splendid Bet. That mare was bred by (Dr) Charles Roberts of Clevedon, South Auckland. Splendid Bet's mother, Splendid Dreams left some real nice pacers, including Christen Me (32 wins and $2.4 million),” Price said.
The Jess Tubbs trained and Greg Sugars driven Betamerica has now won three of her 13 starts and placed in six others for $33,193 in stakes.
Price said Kalani had been broken in by Jason Carkeet and would hopefully make a 2-year-old next season.
Asked if she was tempted to come out of retirement and train Kalani, Price replied:
“He will probably go to Grant Dixon or another local trainer. I’ve got 13 with him, Jason’s got three. I’ve got seven yearlings, two foals, and two in Melbourne," Price said.
“Perhaps if there were more training facilities I might make a come-back, but for now I’m looking forward to watching Kalani’s progress.
“He’s a lovely colt and I’m really pleased at the price I got him. Hopefully he can follow in his close relation’s (Caesar’s Folly) footsteps."
Caesar"s Folly (by Christian Cullen) was the third of eight foals left by the unraced 1999 Falcon Seelster - Marisa Star mare, Lillian.
Her seventh foal, the 2013 one race (unplaced) Somebeachsomewhere mare, Tuapeka Helen has so far left one foal - that being Kalani.