Siobhan Campbell, Bellbridge Park
I’ve always been involved in horses, but started my working life as a nurse. Those skills have come in very handy now with what I do here with the stud. My husband, Michael, bred a couple of backyard foals and trained a few racehorses whilst dairy farming but after a bit of success we decided to move to our current property and breed and train fulltime and so purchased our first serious stallion “Corporate Raider “. Corporate Raider went on to play a pivotal role in WA breeding, siring winners, and also producing great broodmares.
From there it was a snowball effect with many more winners on the racetrack and after the loss of Corporate Raider we ventured into shuttling, with the importation of the very successful sire Danetime. We are currently not standing any stallions but continue to own shares in a few.
Nearing the end of another successful season with only one more mare to foal down – she is overdue and we are waiting for her! Everything, has gone well so far, touch wood. Most of the mares have gone in foal easily and we have some really nice foals on the ground this year.
We’ll have about 10 yearlings going to the sales in February. Two Oratorio youngsters are our highlights – they are both great types. We stuck our neck out a bit this year and sent mares east and purchased one so we’ve got some lovely foals for the following year. We’ve got some standout foals; a colt by Magnus and Gingerbread man colt, out of Miss Margene with her Galah colt impressing in the training stable, they are really raving about him. He went through the sales in Feb and is now a 2 year old. Even the mare purchased over east foaled a cracking colt by Toronado which is pleasing with the success of High Chaparral again over the carnival.
We’ve had a funny season weather wise on the farm with a really dry patch early in spring and then a very wet, cold spell which seemed to make the mares go overdue. I feel we are getting much better at providing good nutrition and overall care. You keep up to date everything that is going on, and advances in science, you get better at things and keep improving. The Studmaster works very well in our feeding routine and horses are well grown and developed. We rarely have any issues with x-rays. The only other thing that has worked well for us is a balancer pellet, for when the grass is very flush. That’s why we use Equibalance at certain times of the year. It works really well for when our horses are putting on a little too much condition. We can feed Equibalance at a lower feed rate, whilst still providing the required nutrients. We do get a couple of mares that really do too well on the paddocks at certain times of the year, so we switch them on to the balancer to control their weight.
We’ve been sending some mares to Vert De Grece this season as he is a quality stallion that’s conveniently close to us. I had a share in his sire, Verglas, and produced some lovely horses from him – horses that went on to race well, and so I’m keen to support this stallion.
My tip for surviving breeding season is coffee – and lots of it! Having a good working relationship with the vet is vital too, fortunately, our vet also understands the importance of coffee.