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News

OTI replenishes stocks overseas

OTI’s managing director Terry Henderson returned from Europe within the past few days having acquired seven horses across the continent and another in South Africa in recent weeks.

Half those acquisitions occurred at the Arqana Breeze Up Sales at Deauville on May 13, three of them arriving last weekend in Australia while another will remain in training in Europe.

Archie Alexander will train an Invincible Spirit filly closely related to last month’s G1 French 1,000 Guineas winner Mangoustine, Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr will train an Oasis Dream colt while Matthew Williams has obtained the half-brother to OTI’s G2 winner San Huberto.

“I think that’s where the value is, we’ve done it for the past couple of years and had a bit of luck doing it,” Henderson said.

“The horses we bought aren’t overly expensive and you know they can gallop in the hope they can go on with it.”

OTI have also remained active in the tried horse market, buying French three-year-olds Athabascan and Intuitu, Irish four-year-old Chicago Bear and South African Group 1-winning three-year-old filly Under Your Spell.

Chicago Bear was bought by OTI hours prior to his victory over 1811 metres at Leopardstown on June 2. He then finished fourth, beaten just over a length at the Curragh in a handicap over 2012 metres last Saturday.

“He was pretty unlucky on Saturday, young Ben Coen said that he would have won if he got a break at the 200-metre mark,” Henderson said.

Chicago Bear, who has won three of ten starts for Johnny Murtagh, will continue his racing career with Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young, the Cranbourne-based couple tasked with ensuring the Siyouni gelding learns how to settle in his races, albeit exhibiting promising signs in recent starts.

Athabascan was acquired by OTI after winning his first race at the fourth attempt over 2000 metres at Saint-Cloud on May 17.

The Almanzor colt trained by Andre Fabre was safely held in the G3 Prix du Lys when extending to 2400 metres for the first time behind all-the-way leader Simca Mille at Chantilly on June 19.

“Athabascan is probably a 2000-metre horse and Andre (Fabre) said as much after the last run. The extra distance nullified his sprint at the finish,” Henderson said.

“We’ll take him back to Listed level and see if we can get a win over 2000 metres and then go from there.”

Had Athabascan stayed the 2400 metres, he would taken his chance in the G1 Grand Prix de Paris (2400m) for three-year-olds on Bastille Day (July 14). That option remains open to Intuitu, trained by Jean-Claude Rouget who was another Almanzor colt bought by OTI as a winner of one race from four starts.

Intuitu registered his lone victory coming over 2000 metres on the all-weather at Cagnes Sur Mer on February 19. His next start comes in the early hours of Wednesday morning (Australian time), contesting the €55,000 Listed Derby du Languedoc (2400m) at Toulouse.

“Intuitu is probably the better of the pair of Almanzor colts but we’ll find out where he sits in the order after Tuesday and then if he runs well he’ll could go to the Grand Prix de Paris,” Henderson said.

“Both horses are likely candidates to come over to Australia at the end of their three-year-old season.”

OTI Racing were represented at Royal Ascot 2022 with four-year-old entire Timour, trained by Andre Fabre, finishing fifth behind Stratum in the Queen Alexandra Stakes (4355m), the final race of the five-day meeting.

Timour has won once from 12 starts, his lone win coming at his third start in a three-year-old colts and geldings maiden over 2100 metres at Saint-Cloud in May 2021.

OTI acquired Timour last September, and whilst winless in six outings for the new ownership group, has produced a series of encouraging efforts in decent company.

Timour is the younger half-brother to Young Rascal, raced by OTI in the twilight of his career, will join Chris Waller ahead of next season.

“He’s not a particularly robust horse, and he’s only a four-year-old so we’ve got to make sure he settles in well and take our time with him, we’re not looking to give him a busy spring campaign,” Henderson said.

“If her were to show us that he was ready in the spring, the Sydney St Leger could be an option but we’re more looking towards next year’s Sydney Cup which we won with Selino in 2021.”

The above is an exert of Carl Di Iorio’s Racing.com article, which can be read in full here.