Linda’s Group Haul – A Brazen Way To Remember November

Linda Huddy and Connections of Pretty Brazen after winning the Ladbrokes Sandown Guineas (Natasha Morello/Racing Photos)


We’ve been told that we should “remember, remember the fifth of November”, but as far as Linda Huddy is concerned she will happily settle for the 15th of November, or the 16th for that matter.

Twelve months ago, Huddy and her husband, Graham, celebrated as Media Sensation – a filly they bred and sold – won the Group One New Zealand 1000 Guineas … Most Important, who races in the Huddys maroon, gold and white silks, captured the Listed Keith Noud Quality in Brisbane and … I’m A Princess, bred and raced by the pair, took out the Group Three Summoned Stakes at Sandown. Three stakes winners on the same day!

Roll the clock forward to Saturday’s corresponding meeting and Huddy was on hand at Sandown to cheer home her classy 3YO, Pretty Brazen, who would become the first filly in 14 years to win the Group Two Ladbrokes Sandown Guineas.


“I don’t think I’ll be forgetting Saturday in a hurry, or the year before for that matter,” a delighted Huddy points out. “We also had a first and second on the Sunshine Coast, while Sally Watkins – a good friend who was sitting next to me when Pretty Brazen won the Guineas – had her horses run first and second in Adelaide.”


Stepping out for her 10th start in the $250,000 Guineas, Pretty Brazen already had wins at Murray Bridge, Bendigo and Caulfield on the CV and, coming into the Guineas, had produced a three quarter length fifth in the Listed Desirable Stakes at Flemington on Melbourne Cup day.

Settling just off the leaders in the Guineas, Pretty Brazen hit the front with 300 metres to go, holding on gamely to score by a long neck.


“Any straight is long when you’re on the leader but she knew where the line was and dug in deep,” Huddy enthused.


The Huddys had to dig in deep too when purchasing Pretty Brazen from the Coolmore draft at last year’s Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, eventually paying $700,000 for the privilege.

Hailing from the first crop of I Am Invincible’s dual Group One winning sprinter, Brazen Beau, Pretty Brazen is out of the hugely prolific, Pretty Penny.

It was still quite a chunk of money though, but as trainer Tony McEvoy was quick to point out on Saturday, given that Pretty Brazen was the most expensive Brazen Beau yearling sold last year, he clearly wasn’t the only one to fancy the cut of her jib at the sale.


“She was a big, beautiful, athletic filly and has a great pedigree to go with it,” Huddy adds. “Even if she never made it to the track she’s worth a lot of money as a broodmare.”


Sure is … and even much more so if the spell-bound filly resumes in the autumn with an Australian Guineas victory.

That would definitely suit Pretty Brazen’s breeder, Denis O’Brien, who is poised to sell an American Pharoah half sister to the Guineas winner at the 2020 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale.


“I purchased Pretty Penny, carrying Pretty Brazen, for $570,000 at the 2016 Gold Coast Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale and ended up with $700,000 for the foal,” O’Brien enthused. “She’s due to foal another American Pharoah in the next few days and will be sent to Justify.

“I’ve been breeding horses for a long time and you just don’t get mares like Pretty Penny coming along every day.”


Pretty Brazen and Luke Currie winning the Ladbrokes Sandown Guineas (Natasha Morello/Racing Photos)


Indeed, those contacted in relation to this article were all adamant that Pretty Penny should be accorded ‘blue hen’ status.

The dam of seven named foals – ALL of them winners – Pretty Penny has produced Group Two Zipping Classic winner and multiple Group One placed, Sertorius; dual Group winner and Group One runnerup, Dollar For Dollar; Group winning 2YO, Clifton Red; Group One South Australian Derby runnerup Rezealient; Flemington stakes placed I Am Titanium; and the stakes placed Fortune of War (in turn the dam of multiple stakes placed 2YO, Spoils).

Every one of them black type!

Pretty Penny was a handy racehorse in her own right too, racing firstly with Kathy Hughes before shifting to Pat Carey’s stables and eventually winning six races – with a further 10 placings – for $228,500 in stakes.


“She won at Caulfield, Sandown and Moonee Valley and I bought into the ownership group after the mare had joined Pat’s stables,” Shadow Glen Thoroughbreds principal, Bill Cockram, reveals. “Shortly after I got involved Pretty Penny ran a lip second in the (Group Three) Cockram Stakes.


(The race is named after Bill’s grandfather, Wally, a former Vice Chairman of the Melbourne Racing Club).


“The decision was made to put Pretty Penny through the (2006) Inglis June Thoroughbred Sale and I ended up buying her for $265,000. She was in the supplementary section and a bit of a diamond in the rough really. Our family had bred and raced quite a few of the good horses in the lower half of Pretty Penny’s pedigree so that was a determining factor as well.

“She turned out to be one of three mares I sent to Galileo that spring. The general consensus was that you shouldn’t be sending speed mares to Galileo but all three of them did alright.

“Still, Pretty Penny is an absolute freak and, to be perfectly honest, I reckon you could send her to a $500 stallion and she’d still produce a good horse. Her seven winners are by six different sires. Incredible.”


Putting the mare in foal to Brazen Beau and with the broodmare a rising 16YO, Cockram decided to roll the dice with Pretty Penny and send her to the Magic Millions National Sale.


“To the best of my knowledge, the $570,000 they paid for Pretty Penny on the Gold Coast is a record for a mare 15 years or over and I remember Colm Santry – who purchased her on behalf of the new owner – coming up to me after the sale and saying ‘I paid a little more than I wanted for her Billy, but she’s just grand’.

“I told him not to worry and that she’d end up making their money back … they got $700,000 for the first foal and they’re about to sell an American Pharoah half sister to the 2019 Sandown Guineas winner!

“Great result all around.”

Pretty Brazen and strapper after winning the Ladbrokes Sandown Guineas (Natasha Morello/Racing Photos)

The Power of Passion