By Andrew Adermann
Queensland’s reigning Horse of the Year, Winning Ways, has been retired and travelled to England to be served by leading stallion Kingman.
Aquis Farm confirmed via Twitter that the Group 1 winner has been purchased by Mrs. Loretta Fung, and was already in Newmarket with a northern hemisphere time booking to visit Juddmonte Farms.
Winning Ways was crowned Horse of the Year in September 2019 on the back of her Group 1 Treasury Brisbane Queensland Oaks victory over 2200 metres at Doomben last May.
The win proved to be Queensland’s sole Group 1 winner throughout the 2018/19 season.
The chestnut mare’s most recent triumph came back in October 2019, where she scored a one-length win in the Lexus Spring Cup Handicap over 2225 metres at Eagle Farm.
Winning Ways leaves Australian shores with a career of 18 starts, comprising of eight wins and four minor placings.
“She was a beautiful filly, lovely to handle, wanted to do everything we wanted to do with her and never gave us any hassle at all,” Winning Ways trainer Garry Newham said.
“It’s just a shame to see her go to stud as a four-year-old because I think her best racing was still ahead of her.
“She was just starting to mature into a lovely staying mare and unfortunately she’s not going to get to where we thought she could go but that’s not my decision to make.”
Queensland jockey Matthew McGillivray had a close association with Winning Ways after riding her throughout last year’s successful winter campaign, and was disappointed to hear she was heading overseas.
“I thought she would’ve been a chance to stay here for another winter and would’ve been quite competitive but the owners made the call to move her along which is fair enough,” McGillivray said.
“She was a very laid-back girl, but at the same time she is really tough and I think that’s one of the reasons she was able to sprint so well to the line because she was always just so relaxed in the race.
McGillivray said that the Group 1 win was the highlight of their close relationship, describing it as very special and unforgettable.
Winning Ways was purchased by Paul Makin for $110,000 at the 2017 Gold Coast Magic Million sales.
Makin, who passed away in May 2019, was also responsible for bringing Garry Newham out of retirement to train his small stable of horses.
When announcing the sale of Winning Ways on Sunday, Aquis Farm also thanked Paul’s wife, Lyndal Makin for her kind co-operation.