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Favourstud Welcomes Tobie Spies

Tobie Spies New Breeding Stud Manager at Favourstud

Tobie Spies takes over as stud master for Stilbaai’s ambitious Favour Stud Leading horseman Tobie Spies has a new challenge. ACCOMPLISHED horseman Tobie Spies has been appointed Stud Manager at Ernst Du Preez‟s up-andcoming Favour Stud near Stilbaai, Western Cape. Spies‟ appointment follows the departure of Renate and Jannie du Plessis, who have moved to Australia.

Du Preez‟s 350-hectare farm has 100 stables and presently houses 35 mares and 20-something yearlings born and raised at the farm. 
Spies told Turf Talk: “Three weeks ago Corne (Spies, son), walked into my office at the Vaal and said, „Dad, how do you feel about going to Stilbaai?‟ I was taken aback, it was going to be a serious career move, but here I am. My wife and I have moved into the house on the Favour Stud premises and we‟re still wide-eyed, but I‟m up for the challenge, this is a nice opportunity for us.”
 A former leading trainer himself (Gr1 wins with Yardmaster, Fast Gun, Petros, Mysterious Hal, etc.), Tobie mainly managed Corne‟s Vaal stables for the last 10 years while Spies Jr was travelling the country raiding everywhere from Kimberley to Port Elizabeth and even doing a spell in Zimbabwe. The new arrangement has seen Corne return to his permanent base at the Vaal with former stable jockey Francois Naude joining as stable employee and assistant.
 There are 60 horses stabled at the Vaal yard and a further 30 in Port Elizabeth. Tobie Spies says: “I will miss racing in Gauteng and elsewhere, I‟ve always enjoyed preparing and saddling our runners for races, but I also loved my time as yearling inspector for TBA, working with John Kramer. We travelled around the country several times to rate the yearlings at stud farms. I got to know most of the breeders well and I also know the beautiful areas from Franschoek to Robertson and Ceres, I will be travelling to these areas again with mares from Favour Stud to be covered by a number of stallions. 
“ Ironically, Kramer is due to visit Favour Stud for sales inspections on 19 October and Tobie says: “Getting the yearlings walking properly and looking the part is our first big challenge. They‟re running around here, rough and tough, and we have to get them in shape for inspector Kramer. With just two weeks to go we face a task of proportions!” 
Renate du Plessis recently told Sporting Post: “I think I could handle a train running into me now – that would be nothing compared to breeding season!” - an indication of what Tobie must be facing at present, but Ernst du Preez believes there is nobody more qualified for the position. “Tobie is a top class horseman. He and his family have been instrumental in our success and enjoyment of racing. Corne‟s professionalism and great attitude brought us to Tobie, we are very happy to have him working for us in this important role.” 
Du Preez added: “It is our mission at Favour Stud to compete at the highest level, we aim to breed top racehorses and we‟ve invested over the years in the best mares we could find, like Gr1 performers Limerick (dam of Noah From Goa), Zaitoon, Far De Vie and Supreme Deal. “We have shares in top new stallions including What A Winter, Querari, Quasillo, also Elusive Fort so we have fixed visits booked. We‟ll be looking for more high quality mares, they‟re not easy to find but we‟re in the market, we‟ll get them.” —tt.