THE Avondale Porche story is one of persistence and effort from go to whoa and it all paid off on Wednesday night when the blue bitch claimed a gallant victory in the Group Two Cranbourne Cup final.
The daughter of Knocka Norris and Micro Lee was whelped at JB Lodge by the uncle-and-nephew combination of Mick Brown and Beau Hedley. JB Lodge was formally known as Peppercorn Farm, but had a name change in extremely special circumstances.
“We named the farm JB Lodge after my son Joshua Brown,” Mick Brown explained. “We lost Joshua to a brain tumour five years ago. He was always heavily involved with Beau and we called him JB, so we renamed and registered the farm when he passed away.
“We have five broodies and 40 pups ranging from four months up to 14 months of age at the farm. Avondale Miss held the track record at The Gardens and has had three litters for us. Her first litter produced Gosford track record holder Avondale Al. The second litter to Collision is due to go to the breakers as we speak and she has a four-month-old litter to Swift Fancy.
“Avondale Porche was home-grown and this is definitely our biggest thrill in racing.”
Avondale Porche burst on to the scene in sensational fashion and the sky appeared to be the limit early in her career.
“Beau trained her before we sent her to Kel [Greenough] and she won her first nine starts. She ran third in a heat of the Vic Peters and broke down in a heat of the Christmas Sprint.
“We then got her right and sent her down to Kel Greenough. She had a couple of niggling injuries and then amazingly had two seasons in a row. It was such a shame that she missed the year of racing. Nothing was going right at that stage.”
One couldn’t help but ask about the emotions from the moment Avondale Porche crossed the line in the Cranbourne Cup final. Did Brown think she had won? What were the feelings while waiting for the number to appear on the board?
“Mate, you’ve got no idea. I own a hospitality business in Newcastle and this is the busiest time of the year and I couldn’t get away to go to the races. So we had family and friends over for a BBQ. We just didn’t know if she held on.
“I rang Kel after the race and said to him that it was heart-attack stuff. The green (Oakvale Destiny) came that quick I thought it might have got up, but she held on. It was a good race, a terrific race.
“Kel’s got her coming good out of the boxes, she can’t seem to draw a box, but she is just coming out so much better and that was the difference in the race.”
The year of patience shown by the Greenough camp is well noted by Brown and deservedly so.
“I’d like to thank Kel and Jacqui for their patience with the bitch. The entire Greenough family has been outstanding over a long period of time and now she is starting to repay the faith.
“I’m not sure if it’s official, but Kel and Beau are talking about possibly heading over to Perth for the Perth Cup.
“I’d also like to thank Kingston Trophies who sponsored the race. It’s great to get good sponsors and we are thankful to have won a race with such large prize money attached.”
The win took Avondale Porche’s career earnings to $94,935 and you get the feeling it’s only beginning as long as she can stay sound. Already a winner of 14 races in a 19-start career, there is genuine excitement of what lies ahead.