Paddy Payne always knew attaining dual citizenship for his New Zealand born children would pay off, and it came in handy for his son Patrick this week.
The Plumpton trainer was able to fly to Auckland to attend Karaka as a result of his Kiwi roots and he has made the most of the opportunity.
“I was lucky enough that my old man kept dual citizenship. I was born in Hawera so that got me through,” Payne said.
“You can’t breeze through, which is good, but I was grateful to be able to get here.”
Payne purchased three yearlings in the Book 1 session at New Zealand Bloodstock’s National Yearling Sale and a further six in Book 2.
“I don’t think they are slipping through the cracks. Nice horses are selling pretty well, I have missed out on a few,” he said.
“I think it is better value here than in Australia at the moment.”
Payne was particularly pleased when he secured lot 937, the Ace High colt out of Archer Park’s draft for $140,000.
“He is a beautiful looking horse,” Payne said. “I am partners with Price Bloodstock and I said he was a really nice horse and we might have to pay a bit more for this one. He was happy to do that.
“We paid up there for him, for our standards.
“He is booked to go back to my farm and then we will put him through the process. If he is good enough, he will be sold to Hong Kong hopefully.
“They are mainly all horses to trade, if they are good enough, but the prizemoney is pretty good in Australia, so we are happy to race them.”
Back home in Victoria, Payne’s stable has become a frequent home for expat Kiwi horses and he has had plenty of success with the likes of Justacanta, Defibrillate, and jumping warhorse Zed Em.
Under Payne’s care, Justacanta has won the Gr.2 Linlithgow Stakes (1200m), Listed Paris Lane Stakes (1410m), and placed in the Gr.3 Chatham Stakes (1400m) and Gr.3 Moonga Stakes (1400m).
He then had two starts in Tasmania for Scott Brunton, placing in the Listed Thomas Lyons Stakes (1400m) before returning to Payne.
Payne has been impressed with the son of Per Incanto and is looking to add to his already impressive resume.
“What a marvel,” Payne said. “He is just a beautiful horse to deal with. He tries his hardest every time. It’s just a matter of placing him right. He has done an extremely good job.
“You know what you get with him. He needs things to go his way, but he will do his best for you.
“He went over to Tasmania and had come back just a little on the quiet side, so we will let him refuel.
“There are some races for him over in Adelaide, but he just hasn’t bounced back well enough to go. We will let him tell us.
“He deserves to be well looked after.”
Payne is also looking forward to tackling some stakes targets with Defibrillate, who is raced by a group of Kiwis, including former trainer Graham Richardson.
“Graham Richardson sent over a horse called Defibrillate, he is a beautiful horse,” Payne said.
“He was smart enough to send him over when he was pretty low-graded and he was able to fly through the grades. He is the kind of horse we want.
“He is a good trainer and sent him over a sound and happy horse.
“He is getting ready for the Mornington Cup (Listed, 2400m). Last preparation he was just a little below those really good horses, but he has come back like he is a little bit better.”
Next week Payne will welcome back jumping great Zed Em to his stable.
“He comes over next Wednesday,” Payne said.
“Unfortunately, Oakbank has been cancelled.
“He needs a novelty course because he is actually quite slow on big tracks where there are not enough jumps, he can’t actually get away from them.
“We are going to target the Grand Annual again.”
Zed Em carries the colours of New Zealand trainer Kevin “Dummy” Myers, and Payne said he owes a lot to Myers for the number of Kiwi horses that have been sent to him in recent times.
“A lot of people have got a lot of respect for Dummy Myers and he has steered a couple of horses our way that might be suitable. I am grateful for that,” Payne said. – NZ Racing Desk