Fortuna NZ

Authorized Thoroughbred Syndicators

SECRET SPICE makes it back to back wins in Malaysia

Fresh from a dominant winning display on the Penang track Saturday 3rd June, 5yo mare SECRET SPICE (Sahkees Secret-Caparison) backed up Sunday 11th June, this time over 1700 metres and franked her very good recent form with an all the way win, with jockey S Salee making the most of her ace barrier draw.

Click HERE to see the race result and Video replay (Race 2).

A three time winner in Singapore, SECRET SPICE is now fashioning an excellent record in Malaysia, five race day starts for three thirds and two wins

SECRET SPICE makes it two wins in Malaysia

HIDDEN PROMISE wins in Singapore – makes it four wins for Fortuna in 15 days


4yo Gelding HIDDEN PROMISE (Postponed-Promissory) scored his 2nd win in Singapore Sunday 4th June with a gutsy win in the Kranji D Stakes event over 1600 metres. Wanting to be handy, rider Shafiq was pushed three wide initially, but took the initiative and pushed forward to sit outside the leader, ZAC ACE, during the run. Turning for home, Shafiq pressed the button on HIDDEN PROMISE and he went to the post a clear winner with a margin of one length back to the second horse.

Click HERE to see race replay.

Hidden Promise wins for the 2nd Time in Singapore 4th June

Now a two win horse in Singapore, HIDDEN PROMISE is fashioning a very good record with two wins and five other prizemoney winning placings from his eight starts

Todays victory capped a golden run for the Fortuna Syndications operation, with four winners in the last 15 days, notably in four different racing jurisdictions, HIGHLY LIKELY in NZ Saturday 20th May, MELODY BELLE in Australia 27th May, SECRET SPICE in Malaysia 3rd June and HIDDEN PROMISE in Singapore 4th June

HIDDEN PROMISE was acquired by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna from the draft of Westbury Stud at the 2014 Karaka Ready To Run Sale for $65,000 and is raced by the Fortuna Hidden Promise Syndicate, an ownership Group of 29 individuals.


SECRET SPICE wins for Fortuna in Malaysia 3rd June

Five Year Old Mare, SECRET SPICE (Sahkees Secret-Caparison) put a good even field of Class 5 gallopers to the sword, sprinting clear in the straight to win by 3 lengths at her home track of Penang. SECRET SPICE who had won three times in Singapore was having her fourth start in Malaysia for Fortuna’s Malaysian Trainer, ex -pat kiwi, Sharee Hamilton. Her Malaysian form had been good with three thirds from her previous three runs. Settling nicely in the run for her rider, S Salee, three back and one off the rail,  Salee mounted a strong run forward at about the 600 metre mark, setting the mare alight to loop the field, the issue was never in doubt once they turned for home. Click HERE to see race result and replays (Race 9)

SECRET SPICE wins at Penang Turf Club 3rd June 2017

Fortuna Director, John Galvin, expressed great pleasure at the outcome; “Secret Spice had won three times in Singapore, collecting almost S$130,000 in prizemoney along the way, however she did not settle very well in the Singapore stable environment, so the decision was taken to send her to Malaysia, which provides a more open environment with spelling paddocks etc and the decision has paid off as she has settled beautifully up there and is really thriving,” he said, “I am sure there are a lot more successes in front of her.”

SECRET SPICE was acquired by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna at the 2013 Karaka Yearling Sales for the sum of $47,500 and is raced by the Fortuna Secret Spice Syndicate, an ownership group of 25 individuals.



The Beautiful Belle

Story – Courtesy of the Te Akau Racing Webite

Last Saturday, in the $250,000 BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (Gr. 2, 1400m) at Eagle Farm racecourse in Brisbane, Melody Belle (2 f Commands – Meleka Belle, by Iffraaj) obliterated her rivals by nearly five lengths.


Trained by Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards at Matamata, for the Fortuna Melody Belle Syndicate (Mgr: John Galvin), she was purchased for $57,500 by David Ellis, from the draft of Haunui Farm, at the 2016 New Zealand Bloodstock Premier Yearling Sale.

Having already won the Karaka Million (Listed, 1200m) in January at Ellerslie, and Sires’ Produce Stakes (Gr. 1, 1400m) on 1 April at Awapuni, furthering her record to four wins from six starts, Melody Belle has won her owners $879,203 in prize money, and now favourite ($2.80) for the $600,000 J. J. Atkins (Gr. 1, 1600m) on 10 June.

Virtually assured of becoming NZ Champion Two-Year-Old, a scratch beneath the surface reveals that Melody Belle stems from the famous Belle family: one of the iconic families in the history of New Zealand racing, which has enjoyed enormous success with fillies in particular.

Marie Leicester, who bred Melody Belle, provides an interesting insight into a family started by her parents, James & Annie Sarten, in 1939:

“She’s the second Melody Belle,” Leicester said. “Mum raced the other one [by Taipan II] and she raced particularly well too, so it must be a good name. She won the Te Aroha Breeders’ Stakes in 1975, when it was in its infancy.

“Belle Fox was the first one that mum and dad bred and she was born in ’39. She had two fillies. One was called Belle Time, by Summertime, and the other was Belle Rosa, by Instinct. Dad gave mum Belle Rosa and he kept Belle Time.

“Within our family, we’ve always said ‘Mum’s family and Dad’s family’. They’re all the one family, but we go back to those two mares all the time – the two daughters of Belle Fox.  The older Melody Belle came from Mum’s line, the Belle Rosa line, and this one comes from Dad’s one, the Belle Time line.

“She (latest Melody Belle) traces back to Honey Belle, who was a very good mare. She won the Foal Stakes when it used to be on New Year’s Day at Ellerslie, the Wellington Guineas, and the George Adams Handicap at Flemington, in the late 60s,” she said.

The grand-dam of Melody Belle, Empress Belle (Sir Tristram), left Tsarina Belle (Stravinsky), a half-sister to Meleka Belle, who finished third in the 1000 Guineas and second in the Champagne Stakes as a two-year-old.

“Meleka Belle and Tsarina Belle are both beautiful looking mares,” Leicester said. “Meleka Belle is from the first crop of Iffraaj and it was because we have the mares at Haunui Farm, and she was a young mare, that we decided to use a first season sire.  Meleka Belle won at Taupo, of all places, when I was (Club) President there. She won at the same meeting as Fix (Iffraaj) won, and they were both three-year-olds.

“Melody Belle is her first foal. I sold an O’Reilly filly out of her last year ($100,000). She’s now got a particularly lovely and very correct weanling filly by Not A Single Doubt, which I’m not sure whether I’ll sell or keep, and in foal to Tavistock.”

Regarding the mating of Meleka Belle to Commands, to produce Melody Belle, Leicester said: “I’d always wanted to send a mare to Commands, and every time I saw him in Australia I’d fall in love with him a bit more. I loved his pedigree and everything about him. I thought Meleka Belle was the ideal mare to go to him, and Commands actually died before Melody (Belle) was born”.

“You get fixations about stallions, and with Commands it was (Sir) Patrick’s family on the dam side and Danehill on the other side, so why would you not want to send a mare to him?

“It was a mating I’d always wanted to do, but felt I needed the right mare and thought Meleka (Belle) was the right mare.

“With the mating, I make up my mind where I want to send mares and then discuss with Mark Chitty (Haunui Farm) and we seldom disagree. Then we do a follow-up with a Brain International Limited rating. The Commands – Meleka Belle rating was very good. Anything under 200 is very good and they start off at 100. I think she was about 150.

“She (Melody Belle) has brought tremendous joy to me and her wins have been a real thrill. Even though you sell them, you still see them as your babies and no matter where they go you follow them intently.

“She blew me away on Saturday, as she did when she won the Sires’ at Awapuni. She seems to be able to jump, get a position, and relax, and find another gear when she turns for home. She’s very professional and I couldn’t get over when she came back into the birdcage like an old hack, just so relaxed – as if to say that race is over, what’s next? And her being so relaxed really thrilled me.

“She’s exciting and just seems to do it so easily, and she doesn’t seem to worry what the track is like. That takes me back to Tri Belle, Star Belle and Honey Belle. They could go through it (ground) if it was wet and loose, but not if it was gluey. None of the family could deal with drying, sticky, tracks.

“They say she’s a tough little girl; well most of the Belle fillies are tough. They’ve got that toughness in them and that determination. She’s a good workmanlike filly and tough. They take a fair bit of work and they just seem to relish it.

“The Belle family seems to keep popping up and they give us great joy, and I’m very, very proud of them, but Melody Belle looks to be very good. I could not believe what she did. She just put paid to them. She’s won her last three races, has had virtually a two-month gap between each one and to do that it takes a good horse and it also takes a good trainer.”


Main pic – Melody Belle as a Karaka yearling

Fortuna Filly MELODY BELLE dominates in winning the Group Two Queensland Sires Produce Stakes


Connections were stunned at Eagle Farm today when their Two Year Old Filly MELODY BELLE (Commands- Meleka Belle) won the A$250,000 Group Two Queensland Sires Produce Stakes by a margin of four lengths. With a run reminiscient of her win in the Karaka Million at Ellerslie in January, she bounded out of the gates to share the lead, rider Opie Bosson then eased her into the trail during the race, moved up three wide on the turn and then sprinted away to an ever increasing margin, much to the delight of her small army of supporters who had traveled from New Zealand to witness the race

Click HERE to see race replay

MELODY BELLE in action Queensland Sires Produce Stakes 27th May 2017

Fortuna Director John Galvin was almost incredulous after the race; ” I knew she had every chance of winning the race, but I didn’t think her win could be that easy,” he said, ” it has been eight weeks since her last run in the Manawatu Sires Produce Stakes and we did have some concerns in the camp because she has only been eating fair since arriving in Australia. I found it hard to fathom her odds in the pre post market when she got as low as $3, but clearly punters were on the mark. It has been a great training performance by Te Akau Racing’s Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards.”

MELODY BELLE will now contest the Group One JJ Atkins event over 1600 metres at Eagle Farm on 10th January, a race worth A$600,000. Purchased by Te Akau’s David Ellis for $57,500 on behalf of Fortunaat the 2016 Karaka Yearling Sale, MELODY BELLE has now won close to NZ$900,00o for her connections, an ownership group of 32 individuals.

Fortuna’s HIGHLY LIKELY wins Maiden Steeplechase at Te Rapa

History was made at Te Rapa on Saturday 20th May when the Fortuna 6yo HIGHLY LIKELY (High Chaparral-Starrinka), led all the way to take out the Neil Treweek Maiden Steeplechase over 4000 metres. History on two fronts, firstly it was the first win by a Fortuna horse in a Steeples event and secondly, it was the first time that a Fortuna NZ trained horse had won for any other stable other than Te Akau Racing. A four time winner on the flat for the Te Akau team, Highly Likely (aka “Gringo”) had been transferred to the Kevin Myers Stable last  November in order to pursue a jumping career. A natural front runner, Gringo led all the way in yesterdays event and rider Shaun Fannin (NZ’s Champion Jumps Jockey) was very complimentary about his performance saying “there is a lot more to come from this horse”.

Click HERE to see race result and replay

HIGHLY LIKELY in action Te Rapa 2oth May

Purchased by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna at the 2012 NZB South Island Sale (where he was the sales topper at $80,000), Highly Likely is raced by the Fortuna Highly Likely Syndicate, a grouping of 20 individuals.


Fortuna’s Chance To Dance runs 5th in the Sydney Cup


Seven year old gelding, Chance To Dance, ran gallantly in the re run of the Group One A$2m Sydney Cup at Royal Randwick on Saturday 22nd April. Having run “second” in the same event on April 8th, which was declared a “no race” by the Stewards, the challenge for Chance to Dance (Teofilo-Crystal Ballet) was could he back up with a two week gap over 3200 metres on a Testing heavy 8 track? Settled on the rail mid field by rider Christian Reith, off a very steady tempo set by tear away leader Lasqueti Spirit, Chance to Dance started to come into the race from about the 800 metre peg, when Reith got him off the rail and onto the back of eventual race winner Polarisation and as the field turned for home, the horse looked to be coming into the race strongly before tiring the last 100 metres to finish in 5th place. “That was a super effort” declared his rider, “he tried his heart out, but was running on empty the last 120 metres.”

CHANCE TO DANCE (Teofilo-Crystal Ballet)

Fortuna Director, John Galvin, who was on track along with Jessica Galvin and seventeen syndicate Members was philosophical about the result. “It was a great effort by the horse,” he said, “it was always going to be a hard ask to run two 3200 metre races two weeks apart, particularly on such testing ground. His best form has been on Good/Dead tracks and we are very proud of the effort he put in today.”

Chance to Dance, who was acquired by John Galvin at the Inglis Chairmans Sale on March 29th for A$260,000 picked up A$50,000 for his fifth placing. The horse will now travel back to New Zealand for a well earned break. “The plan was always to bring him back to NZ once he had completed his Autumn campaign here in Australia,” said John Galvin. “He will parade at our Owners Day at Matamata on April 30th, then have a good four or five weeks in the paddock at Te Akau Stud before resuming work early June and after trialing at Te Teko in August, we will map out some firm plans for his 2017/18 season and all options, be they contesting the Two Mile races in NZ or bringing him back to Australia to race, are on the table for consideration.”

The Chance to Dance Syndicate comprises 66 parties, all of whom are existing Fortuna clients.



Fortuna Newsletter 13th April 2017


In this Newsletter

  • Unprecedented Drama in the Sydney Cup
  • Fortuna Owners Open Day
  • Melody Belle off to Brisbane for winter carnival
  • Inglis Sydney Broodmare Sale hits new highs
  • Current Opportunities

Unprecedented Drama in Sydney Cup

“All dressed up and nowhere to go” was the feeling in the Chance to Dance Syndicate camp after the newly acquired seven year old had run a mighty race to finish “2nd” only to find out that the race had been declared a “no race” by the Stewards, citing safety concerns due to a fallen horse about 150 metres past the winning post, who could not be removed from the track. Click HERE to see footage of the last 800 metres of the “non race.”

While initially disappointed, John Galvin was philosophical about the outcome; “It was so frustrating, we had put in a huge effort over the previous nine days to acquire the horse, put the Syndicate together, organise ticketing for those attending and the horse ran such a super race, only to have it all come to naught,” he said, “however these things can happen in racing and we could debate until the cows come home as to whether the stewards made the right decision in declaring a no race, but what is done is done. A rerun has been announced for Saturday 22nd April, so now we get another crack at it and this time we hope he can go one better.”

John and Jessica were leading a group of 22 of the Syndicate Members – a great day was being had by all with a highlight being the glamour mare, Winx, recording her 17th straight victory. The outcome of the Sydney Cup was obviously a huge dampener on the occasion, however as we know, racing people are used to adversity and after a few drinks in the bar, spirits rose, discussion turned to the strong possibility that the race would be rerun and given the super effort that Chance to Dance had put in, attention was refocused on him being a genuine chance in the rerun.

Fortuna Owners Open Day


Date  –  Sunday 30th April

Time  –  2pm to 5pm

Place – “The Gazebo” – Matamata Race Course

Refreshments will be served

RSVP 25th April

Here is a great opportunity for Fortuna clients and other interested parties to mix and mingle in a convivial atmosphere and view some lovely horses parading. Karaka Million and Sires Produce winner, the Brisbane bound, MELODY BELLE, will be paraded.  CHANCE TO DANCE  returning from his Sydney Cup run, will parade as well. Any other Fortuna horses that are in work (i.e not out at the farm), will also be viewed. Potential candidates for that category are ITS OUR SHOWTIME, LEONESSA, JETSET, COLORADO PRINCE and METEORIC LASS. Also on display will be the 2017 yearling acquisitions, the Denman and Redoutes Choice Colts and the Sebring, Dundeel and Burgundy Fillies.

So, mark your diaries and please advise us asap (for catering purposes) if you would like to attend – you can do that by emailing or by calling/texting Jessica 021 288 6997 or John 021 921 460.

Feel very free to invite friends, family or work colleagues who would have interest in viewing our horses – all welcome.

MELODY BELLE to tackle Group races at the Brisbane Carnival

After MELODY BELLE’s powerful victory in the Group One Manawatu Sire’s Produce Stakes at Awapuni, the Team put their heads together to map out a plan for her. An obvious option was to spell ahead of her three year old season, however the quality of her back to back wins in the Karaka Million and the Sires Produce Stakes gave the team confidence that she could be very competitive in the 2yo events at the Brisbane Carnival. “To win as she did in the Sires, coming off a two month break, first time at 1400 metres and on a sticky track was a super effort,” said Co-Trainer Stephen Autridge, ” she has only had five well spaced runs in her Two Year Old career and we think she will only improve ahead of a Brisbane campaign.”

“Valerie” as she is nicknamed, is booked to fly to Brisbane 4th May, will trial ahead of her first assignment, the Group Two Sires Produce Stakes over 1350 metres (A$350k) at  Doomben on 27th May before contesting the Group One T J Smith Stakes – 1600 metres (A$600k) on 10th June. This latter race has proven elusive for Kiwi based runners; when Darci Brahma won it in 2005, he was the first Kiwi based horse to win for eighteen years and there was a further eleven year gap before Sacred Elixir won in 2016. Already the winner of close to $700k (purchase price at Karaka 2016 sale was $57.5K) MELODY BELLE is bringing huge thrills to her ownership group, many of whom are already planning their “winter holiday” in Brisbane.

Inglis Sydney Broodmare Sale hits new highs

Amazing scenes at the Inglis Broodmare Sale in Sydney last week. Following on from a hugely successful Yearling sale with average sale prices of A$370K, the Premier Sale of Broodmare prospects surpassed all expectations with three lots making more than A$1m and an average of A$570k. Star of the show was the NZ bred Zabeel mare, Provocative who, in foal to Tavistock, made $1.2m.

The broodmare market in Australia is red hot as players jostle to secure quality mares for their broodmare bands.

This underscores the Fortuna philosophy of aiming to secure nicely bred fillies at reasonable prices, attempt to achieve black type success during their racing careers, have lots of fun and camaraderie between syndicate Members along the way and then have a nice outcome at the end of their racing career.


Current Opportunities

“Sarah” – Dundeel-Mirovaya Yearling Filly

Still a few shares left in this lovely filly who is now nearing the end of her breaking in phaze  – Click HERE for more details. $3800 per 2.5% share.

“Lisa” – Burgundy-Spin N Grin Filly

An outstanding physical type with a pedigree to die for – Also in the final phazes of her breaking in. Click HERE for more details. $4000 per 2.5% share.

“Lady Jess”

This is our current Racing Syndicate (Lease) opportunity. The Yearling filly by Darci Brahma out of the five time winning racemare Lady Classique,she has been described by her breaker Dan Miller as the “strongest filly out of the sixteen I have broken in so far this year”. Our expectations of this filly is that she will be racing prior to Christmas 2017.

This filly provides a great entry point for people to have an interest in a quality racehorse, just $150 initial cost and $180 per month (commencing 1st April). There is a right of purchase available to the Syndicate which can be exercised at any time.

Please make contact with John by email or call/text 021 921 460 if you would like to participate in or obtain more information on any of these opportunities

Fortuna’s CHANCE TO DANCE runs “2nd” in the “no race” Sydney Cup


The excitement was palpable among the 24 supporters of Fortuna’s recently acquired seven year old Gelding, CHANCE TO DANCE, who were on course to watch him take his place in the A$2m Sydney Cup, run at Royal Randwick last Saturday. Acquired only nine days before at the Inglis Chairmans Sale by John Galvin for A$260k, the horse had brought good form to the race, but had been ignored by the tipsters and betting public ( oh how we love that) and was starting at odds at over 30 to 1. Bouncing away well from the start, rider Damian Lane had CHANCE TO DANCE handy throughout the run in a race run at good tempo. Making a forward move from about the 600 metre mark, he hit the front at the top of the straight, ran strongly all the way to the line, just getting run down in the last few strides by POLARISATION.

All to no avail, because during the race, the Stewards had called a “no race” – this due to the fact that ALMOONQUITH had broken down early in the race and was laying on the track about 100 metres past the winning post and so for safety reasons the Stewards made the call to abandon the race. Unfortunately, six of the fourteen runners did not hear the abandonment call and their riders continued to race on – the other eight runners pulled up.

Prizemoney for 2nd place was A$380k, but of course, with the race being abandoned, no prizemoney is payable.

The good news is that the race has been rescheduled for Saturday 22nd April and CHANCE TO DANCE, who has pulled up super, will take his place in the field, much to the delight of his small army of supporters.



Fortuna’s EATONS GOLD makes it nine career wins in Singapore


Rising nine year old Eatons Gold (Jetspur-Road Ranger) showed in very emphatic fashion that he seems unaware of his age, when sprinting away to win the S$60,000 Bench Mark 67 event in the slick time of 59.1 seconds on Kranji’s Polytrack surface Sunday 2nd April.

Eatons Gold Singapore 2nd April 2017

” This horse has had an amazing career to date in Singapore”, said Fortuna NZ Stable Director, John Galvin, ” he had his first start on 1st July 2011, and in almost six seasons of racing, he has earned prize money in 51 of his 67 starts. He is no superstar, as he has not managed to win in Class 3, but is honest as the day is long, doesn’t know when to quit and always gives a great sight in his races. His recent form in much stronger company than he met tonight has been outstanding and pre-race I thought he represented a great winning opportunity.”

Galvin’s assessment appeared to be shared by the astute betting public who installed the eight year old a 3 to 1 favourite. Drawn in mid field, Eatons Gold bounced away from the start nicely, and Rider Rizuan Shafiq soon had his charge in a perfect one out, one back position. On turning for home, Shafiq eased his mount to the outside of the two leaders, hit the front and went to the line a length clear of his rivals.

Click HERE to view the race video replay

Acquired by David Ellis on behalf of Fortuna at the 2010 Karaka Premier Sale for NZ$75,000, Eatons Gold  has been a wonderful money spinner for his ownership group of 24 individuals, with career earnings now in excess of S$500,000.

John Galvin revealed post race that Eatons Gold was booked to travel to Malaysia to see out his racing career in the care of Fortuna’s Malaysian based trainer, Sharee Hamilton. “There is no reason why this horse cannot continue to race for another couple of seasons” said Galvin, “and we thought that Malaysia would provide him the perfect opportunity to wind out his career before retiring.” 

Eatons Gold capped off a remarkable week for the New Zealand based Syndication company, Fortuna Ltd, with its 2yo star, Melody Belle, winning the prestigious Group One Manawatu Sires Produce Stakes emphatic fashion at New Zealand’s Awapuni race course and on Thursday the company acquiring the seven year old Australian galloper, Chance to Dance, who will race in the Fortuna colours in the A$2m Sydney Cup at Royal Randwick on Saturday 8th April. “There hasn’t been much sleep this past 72 hours,” quipped John Galvin.

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