In February the main focus was on the NZB Standardbred Yearling Sales in Christchurch. The cancellation of the Southern Bred Southern Reared Yearling Tour made on-farm inspections a more drawn out affair for Arden Lodge, with several groups visiting the farm over the two weeks prior to their trip to Christchurch. Whilst the Sales went ahead as scheduled there were restrictions in place because of being at Level Red and no Australian buyers or members of the public were present.
Arden Lodge sold seven colts but the two fillies were passed in.
Two January born Captaintreacherous colts were purchased by JC International Ltd - Heroic Arden who is out of Tricky Woman, and Arden's Bounty who is out of Rocknroll Arden. Heroic Arden is with Steven Reid and Simon McMullan to be broken in.
Arden's Bounty is getting broken in at Houghton Harness Racing Stable.
JC International also secured a Downbytheseaside colt from Winter Rose called Handsome Arden. He is also being educated by Ross Houghton.
A Lazarus colt out of Real Wings was sold to Graeme Hand, Phil and Glenys Kennard and Small Car World, to be trained by Regan Todd.
An Always B Miki colt out of Arden's Darlin was purchased by a group of owners who intend to have him trained at All Stars Stable. He is For Always Arden.
Trainer Graeme Anderson purchased a Sweet Lou colt out of L'oiseau De Nuit called Arden's Kiwi Lad.
A Fear The Dragon colt out of Ardenart is likely to remain in Canterbury where his new owner Reg Storer is from.
The two fillies are being broken in by Grant Payne at Elite Racing Stables.
After a busy time of yearling preparation the stables have emptied but there are plenty of promising youngsters in the paddock awaiting their turn for some attention.
The two matriarchs of the Arden Broodmare band are in good health and have been residing at Wai Eyre Farm and are very good buddies. Tosca Hanover is the dam of New Zealand Cup winner Arden Rooney and Winter Rose the dam and grand dam of Group 1 winners Bettor Strike, Arden's Choice and South Coast Arden.
Arden's Reality (Somebeachsomewhere/ Real Wings) has been sold and will head to Australia to race. The Stivens were part of his ownership group The Slice of Heaven Syndicate. The syndicate purchased him as a weanling when they sold Celestial Arden (Rocknroll Heaven/ Arden's Darlin). He was initially trained at Kentuckiana Lodge where he first raced as a three year old - winning his third start. He moved to Grant Payne's stable where he matured into a nice racehorse and provided some memorable times for his owners with five wins, four seconds and two thirds. He will be given every opportunity at Amanda Turnbull's stable in Sydney.
Melody Arden is a full sister to Laver and Arden's Ace - both winners of over $100k. Her dam Venus Serena has a Bettor's Delight filly at foot. Melody is home having a spell
Stellar Arden had her first win for The Night Sky Syndicate on 13th February when she took out the 'Lot 382 Half Brother to Ragazza Bromac Mobile Pace' at the Cheviot Harness Racing Club meeting at Addington. In the slushy conditions driver Tim Williams took her to the front and she won comfortably for the Stivens and the rest of the owners. Trainer Grant Payne was pleased with her run.