Celestial Standardbreds, run by Phil and Denise Thurston, is located in Forbes on the banks of the Lachlan River in Central West NSW.

Together, over many years, they have developed a distinguished breeding operation and are considered by many to be leading the way in this enterprise.

The location of their property allows the irrigation of pastures including lucerne which provides year round feed for their horses including hay production even during difficult years of drought.

The Thurston’s have focused on continually upgrading the quality of their mares and ensure they breed to the best and most compatible stallions.

Phil and Denise take meticulous care of each and every mare and their foals to ensure they have every opportunity to develop to their full potential. This has been clearly evident in the growth, education and presentation of their yearlings at the sales.

The combination of these factors, together with a lot of hard work by Denise and Phil, has resulted in their stock being very highly sort after at the yearling sales and in 2019 at the Sydney APG Sale they sold the equal top priced national yearling, their first year of selling under the Celestial Standardbreds banner.

Last year they sold 5 lots in Sydney comprised of 1 colt and 4 fillies. They were successful in selling the top priced colt for $100,000 and the second top priced filly for $90,000 for an overall average for just under $53,000.

When contacted yesterday regarding the recent announcement by APG that will see the 2022 crop of yearlings compete for a massive $3M in races and bonuses, their excitement was obvious.

Phil went on to say, “we have been worried recently about the proposal by Harness Racing Administrators to introduce a 15% levee on owners/breeders especially as in recent months we have invested a significant amount in acquiring two new top quality mares, namely Nostra Villa and Miss Halfpenny.

The announcement on Monday night by APG has really helped to restore our confidence and we now intend to breed all of our mares this coming season”. Phil continued, “we would like to congratulate APG and NEDS  for providing this wonderful boost to the sport. The financial commitment of $3M is massive and will benefit all participants in the harness racing industry. Denise and I are extremely relieved and excited and are looking forward to continuing our long and very successful partnership with APG in 2022”.

Celestial Standardbreds will have 7 quality lots, 4 colts and 3 fillies on offer at the Neds – APG  2022 yearling sales spearheaded by a first foal colt by Bettors Delight out of Gotta Go Jazzy Jet NZ, a first foal filly by Captaintreacherous out of Trilight Brigade NZ and a Fear The Dragon filly out of Group 1 winning mare, Sweet Molly O’Shea NZ.

Please phone Linda Graham – 0428 955 998 or e-mail her at linda@apgold.com.au and she’ll be pleased to assist you with your online yearling sale entries & enquiries.