Apr 03, 2015

Riverton debutant to carry the colours of McCullum's Vermair Racing Fri, 03 Apr 2015

Richard Edmunds. The Informant.

Fresh from leading the Black Caps through a Cricket World Cup campaign that earned acclaim and admiration around the country and the world, Brendon McCullum is set to play a significant role in another sport tomorrow.

McCullum, who has broken several batting records and won numerous New Zealand sporting awards throughout 18 months of remarkable performance and leadership, part-owns the two-year-old Son Of Maher who makes his eagerly anticipated debut in tomorrow’s Natural Destiny @ Clearview Park Excellency Stakes at Riverton.

The Al Maher colt will be the first South Island starter to carry the colours of McCullum’s Vermair Racing. He will be ridden by Terry Moseley and is trained by Michael and Matthew Pitman at Riccarton. McCullum and the Pitman stable have previously joined forces for success with El Doute and So Vital.

Michael Pitman also part-owns Son Of Maher and bought him for A$42,500 at last year’s Inglis Easter Sale. The colt is out of the Listed-winning Tights mare Dance Hit, is a brother to Brisbane Cup placegetter Dance With Me and is related to former high-class performer Peg’s Pride.

Son Of Maher has had one trial for a convincing win at Ashburton last week.

“I really like this horse, I think he goes pretty well,” Pitman said.

That opinion is shared by Vermair Racing’s racing manager Hamish Chapman.

“We’re very excited to see his debut in the two-year-old 1100-metre event at Riverton tomorrow,” he said. “He is a colt we have a bit of time for, and while it is only a starting point he should be very competitive.

“He trialled up well heading into this and hopefully lack of experience doesn’t count against him. There are a few unknowns in the field, but if he runs as well as we think he can it looks like a race he could take out.”

A debut win would add to a successful racing season for McCullum, who shares in the ownership of a handful of classy gallopers including the Gr. 3 Mr Tiz Trophy winner and last-start Gr. 2 Wellington Guineas runner-up Passing Shot.