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QLD Owned Youngster Takes Melbourne Juvenile Feature

The good fortune continues for the Queenslanders in Victoria.

Fresh from their success in the Victoria Derby two weeks ago, rookie pacer Scheu Creek proved too classy for his rivals in the $20,000 Swift Signs Premiere Stakes at TABCORP Park, Melton last night (Friday).

The Premiere Stakes is the first feature for juvenile pacers held in the Garden State.

Prepared by master horseman Peter Manning, aka King of the Kids, the Caribbean Blaster gelding led throughout in the 1720m feature easily defeating race favourite Major Exclusive and Soho Thunderstruck in a time of 1:56.8.

He recorded sectionals of 29.3, 31.3, 28.9 and 27.8 seconds.

Kerryn Manning, the world’s most successful horsewoman of all time, took the winning drive for her father.

Scheu Creek is raced by his breeders, Dr Pat and Rhonda Aldons and their partnership with Manning spans close to 20 years.

“It’s a very satisfying moment to win a race, let alone a feature event so naturally we’re all pretty excited because we didn’t expect it. We bred this guy and his mother was very slow, she didn’t even make it to the trials but she’s proving to be a handy little broodmare so there’s hope for all those other breeders out there.” Dr Aldons said.

Scheu Creek is a half-brother to Miss Rivkah (2 wins – Art Official).

It was third time lucky in the Premiere Stakes after finishing third last year with Night Ninja while Miss Rivkah was unplaced two seasons ago.

The Brisbane based couple has spent close to 40 years in the racing game spanning both codes, thoroughbred and harness, and still gets great satisfaction every time they win a race wherever that may be.

Their team of horses is spread across New Zealand and Australia and with several trainers.

Over the years they enjoyed great success through the likes of former Australian Derby winner City Rogue and star New Zealand filly Hot Shoe Shuffle while Town Royal, OK Chevalier, OK Jaque, Christian Miracle, Afro Samurai and BG Royal also proved to be great money spinners.

Thoroughbred winners include the likes of Row Boat, Driving Creek, Ring True, Napper Tandy, Take A Shot, Some Joy and Pat Kash among others.

In recent years, the couple have scaled back their New Zealand breeding operation and moved many of their mares to Burwood Stud on the Darling Downs of Queensland.

“We made a decision to bring many of our mares a little closer to home, Noel and Christine (Denning) do a wonderful job catering for the mares and foals each and every year. We’re still breeding up to a dozen horses each season and we send the pacers to Peter while many of my gallopers stay here in Queensland.

“All our foals are born and bred in Queensland but we try to focus mainly on Vicbred stallions nowadays, we’ve got several mares that trace back to the famed Black Watch line and hopefully we’re starting to get the results that we set out to achieve.

“We’ve got some nice youngsters on the ground by good sires and the bulk of the mares are in foal again, we’ve used the likes of Captaintreacherous, Western Terror, Well Said, Shadow Play, Pet Rock, Heston Blue Chip and Alta Christiano so fingers crossed.

“I like the Vicbred futurity scheme and I think Peter is a wonderful trainer of young stock. Our plan is to race them in Victoria before relocating them back to Brisbane for my son Ben to train.”

The Aldons family still race horses in New Zealand with Cambridge horseman Mike Berger while gallopers are in work with Cox Plate winning trainer Moira Murdoch.

And the Australian based gallopers are in work with Grafton horseman John Shelton and the Sunshine Coast based John Johnston.

As a leading thoracic physician at The Prince Charles Hospital, he finds a perfect balance with his busy work life and his horses.

“As a whole, the entire family enjoys the horses so I never miss a trick because I’m reliably updated at all times on their progress.

“The big aim is to breed a top liner, we’ve been lucky along the journey but to breed and race a quality horse with the family would be something very special. Who knows, we might be on the way.”

The Aldons family currently has three two-years-old’s in work with Manning.


Hoofnote; Scheu Creek is the first winner for Caribbean Blaster

Hoofnote; Scheu Creek (pronounced ‘Shoe’) is a stream located between South Johnstone and Wangan QLD, named after Heinrich Gottfried Scheu, the first settler in the Innisfail (far north Queensland) area, in 1880


Chris Barsby | RQ Web News | February 10 | Photo credit: Tabcorp Park Racing