INGLIS MELBOURNE PREMIER YEARLING SALE
3-6 March 2013
Make no mistake, these guys have got it right. Thirty-two South Africans at the Melbourne Premier Sale tells you the marketing efforts of Team Inglis are working, and in terms of our country at least, they’re working better than anywhere else. That’s just about as many as the total attendees we used to attract to the Ready To Run in the early years, and it may pay to borrow the services of the much-liked man behind it all, Simon Vivian, to help us get our own back at the National Yearling Sale. It’s not just a matter of propaganda though; when it comes to service, these guys measure up to the best practice of any industry anywhere.
Of course, it helps when the treasures we’ve taken home include the likes of Igugu, Le Drakkar, Hollywoodboulevard and Rio Carnival. But when you think that this week alone, our countrymen splurged more than R20million on Aussie bloodstock, you understand: these fellows have unlocked the code to our wallets. Another way of looking at it, is that with the horses we’ve picked, Summerhill has become the victim of its own successes.
To compound matters, it’s become increasingly competitive down under, not only with the sale itself reaching new heights, but because we have an appetite for much the same horses, South Africans are competing among themselves. Pile on an exchange rate which has moved from the mid “fives” when we initiated our programme a few years back, to beyond nine to the Australian dollar today, and you begin to ask whether there remains a margin in your endeavours. On the evidence of this week’s sport, it is apparent there are still many who clearly believe there is.
On another topic altogether, but in a field just as close to our hearts, last evening Cheryl and I were treated to a meal for the ages. Capetonians already know the sensual pleasures of a visit to the One And Only’s Nobu restaurant, and we sampled the Melbourne version right here in the excellent Crown Hotel. On a rare visit to Australia, the Japanese icon, Nobu Matsuhisa was on hand to autograph his cookbook for the Hartford restaurant. And in a goodwill gesture many of you will recognise, he signed it off “From one champion team to another”.