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Auckland Cup WeekⓇ: Meet the Clydesdales racing in the Dunstan Feeds Auckland Clydesdale Cup

After its successful & action-packed inaugural running in 2019, we're pleased to announce the return of the Dunstan Feeds Auckland Clydesdale Cup here on Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup Day.

With heats taking place at approx. 12.50pm & 1.25pm, and the final scheduled to run immediately following Race 6 at about 3.45pm, we can promise you an unmissable day of racing on our track.


With the help of their owners, we've rounded up some fun facts about the gentle giants taking to the track which you can read below... AND if you want a sneak peek of some of the Auckland team in training this week, check out this video:

HEAT 1 - Approx 12.55pm


Name: Duke

Age: 16

Height: 18HH

Career: "Duke is a fabulous all-round riding horse, vaulter, jumper and of course, racer. As a carriage horse he’s worked weddings, parades, school fares and many local scenic drives. Duke drives single and in a team with his mate Sledge. Duke is fighting fit and has his sights set firmly on first place this year." Silks: Black, orange & mint pattern | Cap: Black

Rider: Annika


Name: Blackwood Brooke

Age: 12

Height: 15'3HH

Career: "Brooke is currently broken into riding, harness work that includes pulling a sledge and log skidding. We're currently working on our moves with side-saddle riding. Don’t let her 'big-boned body' fool you, she definitely can get some speed behind her and loves a big canter or gallop. In last year’s Dunstan Feeds Auckland Clydesdale Cup she definitely made a few heads turn when she came third in her heat. Brooke could have taken out a win in the heat if she hadn't suddenly dodged to be on the same side as the other Clydies and, despite a baulked start in the finals, she's a pretty fast little mare."

Silks: Green | Cap: Pink

Rider: Meagan


Name: Hangawera Carla

Age: 8

Height: 16’1HH

Career: "2IC in the paddock and puts the other mares into place too. Being a younger mare, Carla is inquisitive but can also be a bit of a brat at times. She has very long legs and even at a stand-still she's definitely "gas-powered"! With some encouragement, Carla is definitely a contender when it comes to picking up some speed, particularly when chasing after her buddy, Brooke. In last year’s Dunstan Feeds Auckland Clydesdale Cup, she came in a close fourth just behind Brooke, so she's definitely one to watch for this year."

Silks: Green ice cream cone | Cap: Blue

Rider: Ilona


Name: Where’s Olly

Age: 7

Career: "Olly Is an absolutely sweetheart and goofball who loves cuddles. He's the biggest horse at Murawai Beach Horse Treks and he’ll have your heart melting just by looking at his soft eye. But don’t be fooled! This huge boy can move fast and will stretching out his long strides down the race track!"

Silks: Dark & light blue stars | Cap: Green

Rider: Carrie


Horse 5: Bonnie

Age: 18

Career: "Kintyre Lodge Bonnie Lass is an 18year old therapy horse owned by Maria Cooper of Whiskymeade Farm. Bonnie is taking the place of her daughter Bella, who was scratched from this race earlier this week due to an injury. She has taught many people to ride over the years."

Silks: Yellow w/ world map prints | Cap: Blue w/green stripes

Rider: Lucie

HEAT 2 - Approx. 1.30pm


Name: Sledge

Age: 16

Height: 17’2HH

Career: "Sledge has been with Meike’s Carriage Drives based in Tauwhare for the last seventh months. He single drives carriages and goes in a team with his friend Duke. They help us harrow our paddocks. Sledge came from a working farm and has since settled nicely into family and working life with us. He’s also a nice riding horse... once you get him to stand still to let you hop on!"

Silks: White w/ red & blue shapes | Cap: Blue w/ red stripes

Rider: Kayleen


Name: Blackwood Marshall

Age: 12

Career: "Marshall is a relatively new team member at Somerton Park Clydesdales. He has quickly settled in and has definitely become a favourite of everyone here and the many children he has met and snuggled this summer. He is super easy-going and currently ridden as a pleasure horse by all our family, young and old. He has been in raceday training with family friend Katrina and is looking great! A cheeky gentle giant who knows his job and eager to show off his moves come raceday!"

Silks: Purple w/ pink, yellow & blue squares | Cap: Pink

Rider: Katrina


Name: Frank the Tank

Age: 9

Career: "Frankie is one of the best at Muriwai Beach horse treks! He knows his job almost too well and is always the first to greet people in the paddock and always keen to get to work! This horse is a favourite by far and full of personality! Frankie is a solid and heavy lad, but don’t let that fool you. This boy has a Clydesdale body but the heart of a thoroughbred. He came second last year but he’s coming back this year to take first place."

Silks: Purple w/ yellow stars | Cap: Purple

Rider: Saara


Name: Streamline Strawbs

Age: 10

Career: "A long-time trekker at Muriwai Beach Horse Treks. This big softy reminds her owners of Eeyour with her fluffy long ears, large face and long body. She can also look a little clumsy and sleepy. With long floating paces this girl goes from 0-100 in a flash and looks stunning as she does it!"

Silks: Blue w/ red lips | Cap: Red

Rider: Eve

The Final - Approx. 3.15pm

Following the two heats, the top three qualifiers from each will make the Dunstan Feeds Auckland Clydesdale Cup Final which will be run after Race 5 at approximately 3.15pm.

The winner will receive a trophy, rose garland, silk dress rug and vouchers from Dunstan Horse Feeds.

Want to come watch? Join us oncourse THIS Saturday 7 March for Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup Day to find out. Tickets from $20 with children under 15 years of age getting free general admission.


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