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Who Shot Thebarman adds to White Robe Lodge Cups success Thu, 13 Mar 2014

Wally O'Hearn

Yamanin Vital gelding Who Shot Thebarman wins the Auckland Cup from Sydney raider Celtic Prince.

Who Shot Thebarman's popular win in the Gr. 1 Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup last week is a further reminder of the volume of Cups success that has originated from White Robe Lodge.

´╗┐Who Shot Thebarman was bred by White Robe Lodge founder Brian Anderton and his wife Lorraine and, astutely handled by Awapuni trainer Mark Oulaghan for the O'Leary brothers, he has lately developed into one of the most exciting Kiwi stayers.

Within 11 months he has gone from his first trial appearance to completing the Avondale Cup-Auckland Cup double. Now he is poised to tackle the Gr. 1 Schweppes Sydney Cup.

Who Shot Thebarman completed the major Cups treble for his deceased sire Yamanin Vital, who stood at White Robe Lodge and is also the sire of the New Zealand Derby winner Cut The Cake. The Auckland Cup victory followed the New Zealand and Wellington Cups wins of Yamanin Vital's other sons Trebla and Cluden Creek respectively.

It is a feat that Brian Anderton and the White Robe Lodge crew are very proud of, but it comes as no surprise that such a result should be achieved by a sire to stand at the Taieri Plains-based stud. White Robe Lodge could well be referred to as the home of the Cups sires, such is the major success which has come via stallions to have stood there over the years.

White Robe sires have been responsible for six New Zealand Cups, four Wellington Cups, two Auckland Cups, two Caulfield Cups, a Melbourne Cup and an Adelaide Cup.

"Our sires have left a lot of other Cup winners over the years, too, but it's the major ones that count most," said Anderton. "We got a real thrill out of watching Who Shot Thebarman win the Auckland Cup and after that we started counting up our winners.

"There have also been plenty of other big Cup winners from the families we've got, like Prized Gem, who won a Brisbane Cup."

Mellay, one of the two champion sires to stand at White Robe,  was the sire of Auckland Cup winner Rose Mellay (also third in a Wellington Cup), Caulfield Cup winner Swell Time, and Princess Mellay, who won two New Zealand Cups and was runner-up in a Wellington Cup. Waikato Gold Cup winner Bahrain, runner-up in a New Zealand Cup, was also a son of Mellay.

Trelay was runner-up in both Princess Mellay's New Zealand Cup wins and was third in a Wellington Cup before standing at White Robe Lodge. His progeny included Koiro Trelay, who won the 1980 New Zealand Cup and 1981 Wellington Cup.

Tawfiq sired the 1989 Melbourne Cup winner Tawrrific and Tawbeau, who chased Castletown home when second in a Wellington Cup. Personal Escort, another White Robe Lodge sire, won the Wellington Cup with Envoy, who was runner-up in an Adelaide Cup.

In latter years Danzighill has chimed in with three major Cup wins thanks to Blood Brotha, who won the 2011 and 2012 New Zealand Cups and the 2013 Wellington Cup.

Noble Bijou has been the greatest sire to stand in the South Island, let alone White Robe Lodge. He added to the Cups winners' list with the Adelaide-Caulfield Cup double achieved by (Mr) Lomondy heading the long list of major Cup placings to fall to his progeny.

The Phantom, who won three Group Ones, was runner-up in a Melbourne Cup and twice third in Caulfield Cups and his New Zealand Derby and Cox Plate-winning brother The Phantom Chance was placed in a Brisbane Cup.

Other Noble Bijou progeny to be placed in the major Cups included Magnolia Hall (third in Melbourne Cup), The Bandette (second Sydney Cup), Allez Bijou (second Perth and Sydney Cups), Our Sophia (second Sydney Cup, third Caulfield Cup) and Alibhai (third Sydney Cup, fourth Caulfield Cup).

Noble Bijou was champion Australasian sire on combined earnings for 1981-82, the same season he claimed his first New Zealand sires' championship. He won the New Zealand title four times, went on to be champion broodmare sire five times, and was the first sire in New Zealand to take both premierships in the same season.

Noble Bijou fashioned a superb strike-rate as a sire, leaving 744 foals of which 421 were winners. His progeny won almost 2,000 races, topped $19 million in stakes and he ended up with 65 stakes winners, including 34 Group winners.

Noble Bijou features in Who Shot The Barman's pedigree, as the sire of Auditory, the stakes-winning third dam of the Auckland Cup winner. This is also the family of the dual Group One winner Prized Gem (Kelt Capital Stakes and Brisbane Cup), the dam of 2009 New Zealand champion stayer Nom du Jeu (Gr. 1 Australian Derby; second Gr. 1 Caulfield Cup).

It is a family which has been part of White Robe Lodge for several generations and in 2011 the Andertons bred Who Shot Thebarman's dam Ears Carol to Nom du Jeu.

"We've got a rising two-year-old filly by Nom du Jeu and Ears Carol is in foal to Raise The Flag," said Anderton. "The mare has only had three to the races and they've all been winners."

Gallant Guru and Raise The Flag are the current sires on the White Robe Lodge roster and both are making an impact. Gallant Guru is continually churning out winners, while new boy on the block Raise The Flag was a hit at the recent National Yearling Sales with his second crop.