Australian entrepreneur Dick Smith is an outstanding man in many respects and was awarded the Title of Australian of the Year in 1986.  He was fiercely loyal to supporting the Australian home grown and made products and is to be admired for his patriotism.

Michael and Neville Pangrazio [ ably supported by his wife Louise ] are prolific breeders of Standardbreds based at Rochester in Northern Victoria.

On Sunday at the Neds APG Melbourne sale Neville and Michael , under his trading name of Staffordshire Park , will offer six Pacing bred yearlings and they are all sired by either Australian or New Zealand bred stallions.    So yes if Dick Smith was an avid follower of Harness Racing he would be giving you both a “ Good onya mate “ greeting.

The Sires of those six yearlings are Bling It On [ 2 ] , Lazarus , Ultimate Machete [ 2 ] and Vincent.   Between them they accumulated over $7.7 million in earnings and if they had all raced in North America continually over the 1 mile distance , there is no doubt they would have 1.47 or 1.48 records against their names.

They are all sons of the “ Big Three “ stallions of the Southern Hemisphere over the past ten years or more in Bettors Delight , Art Major and American Ideal.

“ I am convinced that our best horses now in Australia and New Zealand are the equivalent of the best in North America and have the depth in their breeding to back up their racetrack ability . “   said Neville yesterday.

“ If a horse such as Lazarus does not make it as a stallion then I doubt whether any other son of Bettors Delight will either as he was simply the best. “

So Neville is a big fan of the horse who was originally named Better Than The Best and then changed to Lazarus after new owners purchased him at the 2014 NZ Yearling Sales.

His top of the tree pick amongst the six yearlings he is preparing is a Colt by Lazarus from A Few Dollars More [ LOT 171 ] .  He is a mid-December foal so still has some growing and developing to do but Neville says there is so much to like about him and his temperament and attitude.

When you look closely at his pedigree there are a couple of hints of possible high speed.  Firstly he has a 3 X 3 double cross to the great Christian Cullen and we haven’t seen many or any faster horses in this part of the Harness Racing world for the past 30 to 40 years.

Secondly the granddam of this Colt is a half-sister to Mindarie Priddy 1.53.8 and she had the speed of lightning before an untimely death in 2014.

There are also two Fillies amongst the Pangrazio draft that look to be outstanding types and they will be well worth waiting for  –  LOTS  270  and 275.

“ The Vincent filly , LOT 270 ,is strong and powerful and a great looking Filly .  She appeals to me as a definite 2 year old type . “ said Neville.

LOT 275 is by Ultimate Machete from Nats Survival 1.56.6 .  Ultimate Machete was a powerful and fast son of Bettors Delight and from a terrific Female Family , so has all the credentials to become a successful stallion.  He appears to be siring some yearlings in his own image  and there was a lovely Colt sired by him that sold strongly at the Queensland sale on 23rd January.

“ This filly really impresses me as a type  –  she is strong , has a lovely shoulder to her and is so sensible and relaxed . “ said Neville.

With stallions such as Bettors Delight , Art Major and American Ideal in their twilight years and the shuttling of stallions from North America becoming increasingly more difficult , there is a golden opportunity for some of our “ Home Grown “ stallions to get established.

It would certainly put a smile on the dial of Dick Smith ….. as well as our Southern Hemisphere stallion owners.

Thanks to Neds-APG GAME CHANGING PARTNERSHIP that sees over $3.25M on offer this year, along with more than $2.25M in local NSW & VIC prizemoney, there is a massive opportunity now for younger people to get involved in our sport, just like Courtney.

The Neds-APG Sale with its greatest offering in 33years, will commence at 11am, this Sunday, 6 February at Oaklands Junction.