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Name: Midlake

Gender: Gelding

Sire: Rothesay

Dam: Queen Hazel

Trainer: John Thompson

Foal Date: 19/8/2013

 

ONTRACK THOROUGHBREDS SECURE EASTER COLT

Ontrack Thoroughbreds ventured to the William Inglis Easter sale ring at Newmarket earlier this year where they were able to secure this big, strong colt by Rothesay.

Ontrack have since decided to send the bay to John P. Thompson, to be trained out of his stables based at Eagle Farm, to make the most of the QTIS bonus scheme as well as targeting the William Inglis race series.

By the Group 2 Queensland Guineas (1600m) and Group 3 Labour Day Cup (1615m) winner Rothesay, out of an imported mare, Queen Hazel.

Rothesay hails from a female line that’s produced the stakes winner Astute Angle (by Godswalk) and Causeway Lass (by Giant’s Causeway). Rothesay is out of Schiaparelli (by Woodman) a daughter of the Group 1 William Reid Stakes, MRC Elders Mile and Marlboro Cup winer Canny Lass (by Bletchingly). Canny Lass is a full sister to the successful sire and Group 1 Golden Slipper winner, Canny Lad.

Other notable racehorses that hail from that branch of the family include three champion juveniles – Sepoy (by Elusive Quality), Guelph (by Exceed and Excel) and Camarilla (by Elusive Quality). The family has also produced a Group 1 QTC Queensland Derby winner, Camarena (by Danehill).

Rothesay’s first crop made their racetrack debut during the 2014-15 racing season with the horses stock making a big hoof print as the bay claimed Queensland’s Leading First Season Sire title with 14 individual winners, from 41 runners, and progeny earnings of $653,360.00. Overall, Rothesay finished in fourth spot on the Australian Leading First Crop Sires of the Season.

Ontrack Thoroughbreds will ensure this colt is given every chance to succeed and will manage the syndicate.

NOT ENOUGH? The dam of this colt Queen Hazel won a maiden at Churchill Downs in America and is by the 2001 Kentucky Derby and Florida Derby winner, Monarchos. Queen Hazel trained on to finish third in the Grade 3 Regret Stakes at Churchill Downs.

Queen Hazel is out of the unraced Flying Afleet (by Afleet) and hails from a family that’s produced Mica’s Pride (by Bite the Bullet), winner of the STC Group 3 Research Quality and in-turn the dam of Varenna Miss a winner of five races including the Group 2 BRC QTC Cup and four-time Group 1 winner Criterion (ex Mica’s Pride).

John Thompson had the knowledge and wisdom of three generations of horse trainers behind him when he got into racing. But that wasn’t enough for the young trainer who has since become a shining example of integrity and dignity on the Australian turf.

Thompson was born into the business. His father had been a trainer, as had his grandfather and great-grandfather. While priceless lessons are passed down from father to son, Thompson embarked on a search for more that took him to Bart Cummings, for whom he was foreman for eight years, Bill Mitchell and Guy Walter and the Ingham brothers Crown Lodge stable.

It was when he began training in his own right that the learning process clicked up a gear, often in less-than-ideal circumstances that resulted in Thompson displaying the finest of his qualities.

Thompson took over the job as head trainer for the Patinack Farm operation of coal-mining magnate Nathan Tinkler in 2009. Within six months he had trained his first Group 1 winner for Patinack when Small Minds took out the Australasian Oaks in Adelaide from her stablemate No Evidence Needed.

More big winners came for Patinack, with Gathering winning the Group 1 Railway Stakes in Perth in 2010, Nechita winning the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes in Melbourne and Pear Tart claiming the Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara in Brisbane. In all, Thompson trained 40 stakes winners for Patinack Farm.

The bulk of the 500-or-so winners Thompson had trained by the start of 2015 were for Patinack, and he acknowledges the opportunity was a golden one. But after a few years of success, well publicised financial troubles emerged at Patinack and Thompson was left to feed and train a stable full of horses and run a racing business with limited resources.

Throughout the troubles Thompson kept turning out winners, maintaining complete loyalty to his owner. With Patinack’s eventual demise, Thompson became a public trainer in early 2014 attracting some high-profile clients and continuing to turn out big-race winners.

Most notable among them is First Seal, owned by the China Horse Club and Partners, and one of New South Wales’ better three-year-old fillies being the winner of the ATC Group 1 Flight Stakes, the Group 2 Surround and Tea Rose Stakes. By the start of the 2015 winter carnival in Queensland Thompson has trained a total of 531 winners with his runners earning more than $24million in prizemoney.

In season 2013-14 he saddled 44 winners and whilst this season he has chalked up 27 wins and 57 placings with earnings of more than $2million. Thompson credits his success to the implementation of proven systems, the engagement of key staff, and his own total dedication and now operates stables at Randwick and Eagle Farm racecourses and limits his numbers to 60 in work at any one time.