Pearce Adds to Broodmare Collection With Sierra Sue
Bill Pearce, once a large-scale breeder of Standardbreds before turning his attention to Thoroughbreds, has been enjoying a quick winter escape in Far North Queensland but his growing breeding and racing interests are not far from the front of his mind. The Bromfield Park principal has made an increasing investment in the high-end broodmare market, last week purchasing 50% in group 1-winning mare Sierra Sue (NZ), while one of his earlier additions, AU$800,000 (US$560,000) mare Fast Fleet, continues to pay dividends. Sierra Sue will be served by soon-to-be crowned champion Australian stallion I Am Invincible (AUS) this year, Pearce confirmed July 28. Fast Fleet's filly by Zoustar (AUS),Fast Star (AUS), a AU$500,000 ($383,224) Inglis Easter yearling purchase by Malua Bloodstock's Leon and Troy Corstens, is a half sister to champion sprinter Santa Ana Lane (AUS) and the 2-year-old filly is set to make a late-season appearance at Echuca today in a maiden over 1,200 meters. Bred by Pearce, who bought Fast Fleet in conjunction with Glenn Burrows Bloodstock from the 2019 Inglis Chairman's Sale carrying the filly, Fast Star had been nominated for a swag of races in two states this weekend but it is most likely she will head to the country Victoria track for her first start. "I think whatever she does she will improve on, but she will be a nice autumn filly," Pearce said from Port Douglas. "Craig Williams rode her at Flemington (when she won a jump-out over 800 meters on July 15) and he got off and he thought she was a really nice filly, but that she probably needs 1,200 meters. "That's why I think they're kicking her off in the Echuca race rather than in Adelaide, which was over 1,050 meters. It just might have been a bit too sharp for her." When approached by the Corstens' about retaining a share in the filly, Pearce jumped at the chance. He also intended to keep a stake in her younger half brother by I Am Invincible who also sold for AU$500,000 ($358,720) at this year's Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale. "When the Corstens' bought her, they rang me and asked whether I'd like to stay in for a slice, so I did, and then I sold the I Am Invincible colt after her," he said. "I bred her to I Am Invincible and Ciaron Maher bought him. I tried to actually stay in for a slice, but when I rang up, he was already all gone." Fast Fleet has a weanling filly by I Am Invincible and she is in foal to last season's leading sire, Yulong's Written Tycoon (AUS), further evidence of Pearce's level of investment in his Thoroughbred portfolio. "The I Am Invincible filly is at Vinery and they're very happy with her. Adam White (Vinery bloodstock manager) will probably decide over the next few months about where he's going to send her, whether it's to Magic Millions or Easter; he'll evaluate that closer to the time." Pearce also has high hopes for El Rocko (AUS), the younger brother to group 1 winner Foxplay, who won impressively at Sandown July 27 for trainer John McArdle. The stakes-placed gelding, who made it two in a row after a seven-length maiden win at Ballarat on July 10, is one of five winners out of the listed winner Butters, who Pearce paid AU$500,000 ($375,200) for at the 2018 Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale. El Rocko was sold by Pearce for AU$250,000 ($154,257) to McArdle's Redgum Racing and Pacific Bloodstock at the 2020 Inglis Australian Easter sale. "He was going to be a really nice 2-year-old and then he had a bit of a mishap, so we gelded him, brought him back, and he's 2-for-2 this time in," the breeder and part-owner said. Pearce has no immediate regrets about joining Ozzie Kheir in the ownership of the former Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young-trained, two-time group 1 winner Sierra Sue at a valuation of AU$1.55 million ($1,065,839). However, it would have been much cheaper if he had accepted Kheir's offer of a share in December 2019, almost three years before he eventually took a half interest in the mare. "I raced (Cox Plate, G1, winner) Sir Dragonet with Ozzie and the boys and I was offered a share in her at the time, but for whatever reason I didn't go into Sierra Sue," he said. "I watched her very closely over a period of time and it was disappointing not to be involved, so I thought I better have a slice of her, so I bought half of her (through Inglis Digital)."