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NZ Te Akau To Open Singapore Stable In January
New Zealand's leading thoroughbred operation Te Akau Racing Stables "has gone global" & champion trainer Mark Walker "will spearhead a Te Akau operation in Singapore starting on January 1," reported The New Zealand Herald. Principal David Ellis said the "exciting new move would take Te Akau to a new level", while confirming the local arm of Te Akau at Matamata "will remain unchanged, except Jason Bridgman will take over as trainer from Walker (who last week set a new all-time training record for a NZ season when he notched his 106th winner) & Opie Bosson will return as Number 1 rider to the stable where his headlining career began". Ellis noted the "bottom line of the expansion is greater returns for Te Akau stable clients. I've been saying for the last 18 months that going international is the future of racing. We looked at all the options & Singapore is going to provide the best client returns. There is a A$40,000 minimum stake through to A$3 million for their best race. We looked closely at Hong Kong but, of course, our clients are not allowed to race their horses there." Ellis highlighted one of last season's Te Akau local 3YOs Noble Manor as an example of the financial returns from Singapore: "He won only 1 race here, but since he's been in Singapore he's won more than A$500,000." Ellis also emphasised he "does not see this move as simply sending horses to race in another country"; rather it offers " a complete extension of the stable-client relationship". He summed up: "These days, a stable client can get on a Singapore flight at 2.30pm & be in Singapore by 7.30pm local time if their horse is racing. And Singapore is such a handy location from which to campaign horses at the international meetings, like Dubai & Hong Kong."