Farewell to a very special mare - She Will Reign

Aug 21, 2018

Our very own Cinderella story has drawn to a close with champion filly She Will Reign departing the stable for the last time on Monday morning. 

Her journey has been well-documented along the way (the $20,000 filly turned dual-Group 1 winner) but as the team found themselves saying their final farewell’s during the week, it was all too easy to start speaking of favourite memories, re-watching replays and reminiscing about the highlights from what has been a dream come true for this Warwick Farm racing yard.

Gary Portelli received a small brown filly in to his yard in October 2016 that had been in work with Michael Costa up until he relocated his stable to Queensland. Other than having a notably large hindquarter, the filly was fairly unremarkable in the flesh. That is of course, until Gary watched her first proper fast gallop when he stopped the clock with disbelief and had to take a photo of the displayed time.

After that, her path was an incredible uphill climb – breaking her maiden in record time at Kembla Grange and then going on to win the Inglis Nursery, Silver Slipper and Golden Slipper.

Returning as a three-year-old, few people believed she would ever win another race (as so many other Slipper winners had failed to do) but she was able to sprint home strongly down the outside of the Moonee Valley straight to claim her second Group 1 title first-up in the Moir Stakes.

Her next and final win came in the Inglis Sprint at Warwick Farm the preparation later where she collected a further $150,000 for connections but she failed to flatter herself in the next few starts after that.

Following an unplaced resuming run in the Missile Stakes this campaign and a great deal of deliberation, the ownership group made the difficult decision to retire the mare from racing and hand over the reins to buyer, Mr Katsumi Yoshida who intends to send the mare to Deep Impact for the 2019 Northern Hemisphere breeding season. 

Having a champion move on does leave a pretty big hole in a smaller stable like ours but at the same time, we are very much looking forward to seeing horses coming through the ranks and finding out where they will get to.

We have had plenty of smart new two-year-olds added to our roster this year and that definitely helps to ease the blow of SWR's departure this week. At the moment, Gary's eyes are firmly set on preparing the more precocious early-running types for the upcoming trials and getting our main Spring Carnival hopefuls back up and running in the coming weeks.

Over the weekend, all of the owners had a chance to get together at the yard and say farewell to SWR which was very special. For many of them, she was their first involvement in racehorse ownership and seeing them all turn up with their families to see her off was a bit surreal and made us truly appreciate the immeasurable impact she had on all of those involved over the last 18 months.

'Daisy' will be greatly missed and we can't wait to see her foals hitting the racetracks in years to come.

Please click on the link provided to access photos from our recent farewell


A big thank you to everyone who has been involved in her success - we can't possibly begin to thank you all individually but here are a few that deserve special mention: Darby Racing Syndications & the entire ownership group, Greg Miles, Sharyn Newby, Karry Kulwinder, Jimmy Irani, Beany Panya, Glenn Lee, Kerrin McEvoy, Ben Melham, Deanne Panya, The Portelli family, Ryan Pendergast, REC, Wild Oaks, Prestige Racehorse Transport.