Ruthven’s Breakthrough Was A Classic

Ruthven (Trackside Photography)


It’s hardly unlikely anyone would begrudge the victory of Ruthven in Saturday’s Group One Queensland Derby over 2200m at Doomben.

Just consider the lead in … at only his second start, the Ciaron Maher trained performer ran second – beaten a whisker – in the Group Two Sandown Guineas, ran second in the Group Two Alister Clark in March, was beaten just on two lengths in the Group One ATC Derby and ran second again in the Group One South Australian Derby in mid May.

Well, the door he’d been knocking on got busted down in Brisbane with the colt racing away to score by nearly four lengths in a powerful display that has got his owners looking forward to Spring.

As of Saturday, Ruthven now has three wins and five seconds from 10 starts for $763,900 in stakes.

Breeder and part-owner, Paul Roach, was mightily impressed by the performance and said the 3YO will now be tipped out and brought back with a Cups program in mind.

“It was a fantastic win,” Roach enthused. “He doesn’t get much of a break though. He’ll enjoy the Queensland sunshine for three or four weeks and then he’s back into it. He just keeps on improving this colt and it will be interesting to see what he does from here.”

Roach usually has “two or three going at one time” and asked a few mates to come into Ruthven with him, along with a couple of Maher’s clients. We can only assume they are grateful for the opportunity!

A landscaper by trade, Roach has been a thoroughbred enthusiast for quite a while and got into the breeding and racing game around 10 years ago.

“I’ve had a few winners along the way, but Ruthven is my first stakes winner – and a Group One winner at that,” Roach adds.

“Unfortunately, his mum, Ruddigore, died just two weeks after Ruthven was born. Twisted bowel. I had the horse with Anthony Mithen at Rosemont and a nanny ended up raising her. It clearly hasn’t held him back any.”

Ruddigore, an unraced Octagonal mare, is from the multiple Group placed Operattas, a close relation to former top Sydney sprinter, Cangronde.

Ruthven’s victory was also welcomed by Aquis Farm, which stands at the colt’s sire, Domesday.

“We’re all very happy for Ciaron, Paul and his mates and it’s a tremendous result for Domesday,” Aquis Farm’s Business Development Manager, Paul Knight points out. “That was his 15th stakes winner (10 of them Group winners) on Saturday and his third Group One winner after Pressday and Doctor Doom.

“Since Aquis purchased Domesday from Darley last year he’s just gone from strength to strength with five stakes winners this season including Daysee Doom, Oregon’s Day, Heart Starter and Five To Midnight.

“He’s one of our foundation stallions at Aquis and covered a very good book of mares last spring. Not surprisingly, he’s been pretty popular again this year … even more so after Saturday.”

HOOFNOTE: According to Roach, Ruthven owes his name to Darley’s Andy Makiv, who suggested the moniker as a tie in to his mum, Ruddigore.

The original Ruddigore is a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta from the 19th century whose male lead is called Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd.

One thing is for sure, Ruthven put on a good show at Doomben and, unlike the original Gilbert and Sullivan production which allegedly ‘tanked’, Roach and co. are clearly looking forward to the colt’s next act.

The Power of Passion