Saturday’s Group 1 Australia Cup (2000m) was a milestone for Astute Bloodstock (FBAA) with its European imports finishing first and third in the $1.50 million event at Flemington.
Lindsay Park stayer Harlem (GB) caused a $61 boilover with a half-length victory over the favourite Gailo Chop (Fr). His stablemate Ventura Storm (Ire) charged home to fill out a $4,000 trifecta.
Astute Bloodstock director Louis Le Metayer oversaw the purchases of both gallopers. "They were among our first ever European imports,” he said. “Both were lightly raced stayers with a proven record at Group level and we felt that they would be successful in Australia."
Trainer David Hayes anticipates further success ahead. “We’ve had terrific results buying European horses with Astute Bloodstock starting with Pilote D’essai in the Ballarat and Pakenham Cups. We feel that Ventura Storm could also win a big staying race in the future and Poetic Dream is another top horse that we acquired together who also looks to me like a Group 1 horse.”
Harlem (pictured) will start next in the G1 Ranvet Stakes in Rosehill on March 24 and Ventura Storm is likely to run the following week in the G1 BMW Stakes.
A Juddmonte Farms homebred, Harlem (Champs Elysees) cost 520,000gns (AUD 882,825) at the 2016 Tattersalls Horses in Training Sale. Ventura Storm (Zoffany) was purchased privately for a syndicate that includes Hayes, Scott Perrin, Rupert Legh, Robert Hill-Smith & John Valmorbida.
Federation of Bloodstock Agents Australia (FBAA) was formed in 1988 to maintain, improve and develop the standards, status and services of bloodstock agents throughout Australia. Its members operate with the utmost integrity and professionalism and are bound by the strict Industry Code of Conduct.