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News from Vicki

20 August 2009

I was last weekend invited to attend the inauguraul Magic Millions Sporthorse Sale, of which I had been involved in an advisory capacity.  It was an interesting couple of days, and this is a sale that could be a fantastic focus for Australian sporthorses in the future.  It is always difficult to attract foreign buyers to our shores due to the tyranny of distance making it difficult to see a number of quality horses in a small area, such as one can in Europe.  Plenty of my friends in Europe ask about Australian horses when the Apaches, Scandals and Ashleigh Drossel Dans appear spectacularly on the scene, but I can't advise them in all honesty to come out due to the above.  But if we had a truly quality sale of sporthorses, I think we could attract the international buyers.  For sure it would be appealing for our Asian neighbours, and at this first sale there were Korean and Dubai buyers, as well as interested spectators from China and the Philippines.

Prices were of market values for those that sold, and perhaps some vendors were a little unrealistic with their reserves, as a few were passed in.  One thing I discovered was I think I am in the wrong dealing industry, with the polo ponies and endurance horses often going for huge prices, or being passed in at huge prices!  As with everything for it's first time, there were teething problems, with the trials being conducted out at the attractive facility of the Gold Coast Polo and Country Club, which was pretty much able to cope with the multiple disciplines involved.  I can't speak for the other disciplines, but for the jumpers, the trial grounds were less than ideal.  It was a good thing that there actually weren't too many people trying horses, as the watered grass area was not very suitable for those horses that did have a bunch of people trying them.  Being artificially watered, it was either a bit slipperary, a bit boggy, or a bit hard.  Not ideal to show off a horse to it's best, and I suspect there were a couple of jarred up horses by the end of the second day.  I would be very keen to take some horses up next time, but only if guaranteed a good jumping surface for trials. Also there wasn't enough information about the horses being tried, or when they were being tried, with the timetables given out being hard to stick to.  All this information was efficiently available, thanks to the great resources of the Magic Millions team, but just needed to be more efficiently co-ordinated, and perhaps in a smaller area, as it was some distance to go between the Eventers, Jumpers and Dressage horses.

While there I have contracted a flu, Swine or otherwise, so trying to lie low for a few days, and then have National meetings next week, World Cup, High Performance and National Jumping Committees, so horses are on the back burner for the moment..

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