A Group 1-performed son of champion stallion Savabeel will take Norwegian Park to a new level when he begins his stud career there later this year.
Peter and Sue Westend have developed their operation into a large-scale agistment operation, accommodating around 200 mares on their two Cambridge properties and one in nearby Ohaupo.
The couple are vastly experienced with Peter as a former manager of Chequers Farm and Sue as an employee at several thoroughbred establishments, including a lengthy stint at Windsor Park Stud.
They have had success as breeders, including this season’s promising two-year-olds Thomas Aquinas and Xpressmymind.
“We’ve been working together in partnership since 1995, when we started up in Gisborne and stood the stallions Cocky Golfer and Crested Wave,” Peter Westend told The Informant.
“Over the last few years we’ve been doing a lot of agistment, especially for Luigi Muollo (of Novara Park). We foal down all of his mares and his clients’ mares.
Luigi approached us about standing a stallion for him and we thought it was a really good opportunity.”
What’s The Story is a son of the Carnegie mare Tall Story, who is a half-sister to the multiple Group One-winning mare Tall Poppy.
Trained by Stephen McKee for the Go Racing Tall Story Syndicate, the $80,000 yearling won two of his 10 starts and earned more than $170,000 in prize-money.
He also finished a close second to Rangipo in the Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m).
“He showed a huge amount of talent as a racehorse but unfortunately got hurt,” Westend said. “I think the best of him was still to come on the racetrack.
“He’s got a very strong pedigree, and he’s a very, very nice type – a big, strong individual who looks a lot like his sire.
“He also strikes me as a lovely-natured horse. We don’t have him with us on the farm yet – he’s still at Novara Park, but I’ve been over there to see him and he’s like a big puppy dog. We’re really looking forward to having him here.” McKee said five-year-old had the right credentials to succeed at stud.
“What’s The Story is an outstanding type, balanced, athletic, deep, rich colour, strong hindquarter, lovely sloping shoulder. He is very much in the mould of his sire Savabeel.
“He showed he was a top-class racehorse with Group 1 ability. His turn of foot was exceptional and up with the very best.”
What’s The Story will stand for an introductory fee in 2018 of $4000 plus GST.