No to offers for Concert Hall

Concert Hall (Matt Cameron) cruising to the line in impressive style at Matamata last Saturday.

Hamilton owner-breeder Joan Egan has put the “not for sale” sign up for her smart mare Concert Hall, one of the most impressive winners at Matamata last Saturday.

Concert Hall, a daughter of Savabeel, took her record to four wins and two placings from eight starts when she showed an amazing final sprint in the Rich Hill Stud 1600 to burst clear of the highly talented Rhinestone Cowboy halfway down the home straight and win by four and three-quarter lengths.

She had also won in convincing style in her previous start over the same 1600m trip at Tauranga earlier this month when also ridden by Matt Cameron and as a result of those performances it’s no surprise she has attracted the attention of bloodstock agents.

‘’I’ve had two enquiries from Australia to buy her, but I’ve told them ‘thank you very much but she’s not for sale,’’ Egan said. ‘’She’s destined for my broodmare band. I’ve only got a small band of mares and she will be an asset.’’

Concert Hall has looked smart from the outset, winning her debut at Matamata 11 months ago, and she has gone from strength to strength recently for trainers Roger James and Robert Wellwood. But Egan admits it was a pleasant surprise to see her win so easily and so impressively last Saturday.

“I was worried about the track,’’ she said. ‘’She had been on a wet track at Pukekohe when it rained and hailed just before her race and she didn’t handle it. Luckily it wasn’t like that on Saturday.

‘’It was just amazing to see her win like that.  Roger said he was hoping she would frank her form from Tauranga and really I was stunned the way she won. She hadn’t shown that turn of foot before Tauranga.’’

Concert Hall’s win continued a fine run of success being enjoyed by Egan as an owner-breeder within the last two and a half weeks.

Concert Hall started the winning streak with her Tauranga win on February 6, then Beauden (by Bullbars), prepared by Team Rogerson, won at Awapuni on February 8 and Beauden’s stablemate Sandrine prevailed at Ellerslie eight days later. Concert Hall made it four wins within the period for Egan and Beauden had also won two starts earlier at Taupo on December 30.

‘’I’ve had a great few weeks with my horses,’’ Egan said. ‘’It’s so exciting with Concert Hall. She has not been easy and Roger and Robert have been very patient with her. That’s why I gave her to Roger. I knew he wouldn’t push her.”

Egan has only a small broodmare band, but she has enjoyed plenty of success and it was ironic that Concert Hall should win on Matamata Breeders’ Stakes day. Last year Sword Of Osman, a son of Savabeel she bred, won the Gr.3 Reid & Harrison Slipper (1200m) before taking the Gr.1 Sistema Stakes (1200m) at Ellerslie and 18 years ago Flying Babe, another smart youngster she bred, won the Gr.2 Matamata Breeders’ Stakes.

“Flying Babe was one of the best I bred,’’ Egan said. ‘’She was champion two-year-old.”

Egan’s other success stories as a breeder include the 2011 Karaka Million 2YO winner Fort Lincoln, and Cheiron, whose 11 wins included the Gr.2 Sir Byrne Hart Stakes (1400m) in Queensland. Cheiron was also runner-up in the 2000 Gr.1 Telegraph Handicap and fourth in the Gr.1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m).

Egan’s current broodmare band includes Concert Hall’s dam, Classic Legacy, and  Sword Of Osman’s dam, Bunyah. Classic Legacy has a yearling colt by Makfi and a filly foal by Vadamos and Bunyah has a  yearling filly by Ocean Park and is carrying a full-blooded sibling to Sword Of Osman.

“Classic Legacy is a daughter of Super Sound, who was just the second broodmare I bought,’’ Egan said. ‘’She was 29 years old when she passed away last November.

‘’She’s from the good old southern family that traces back to the Filly of the Year Tartan Tights (Gr.1 New Zealand 1000 Guineas and Gr.1 New Zealand Oaks winner) and Baghdad Note (1970 Melbourne Cup winner). It’s a great old family that gets better with age so we’re hoping to have a lot more fun with Concert Hall.”