– Greg & Jodie White’s interview with Suzy Jarratt.
Greg White prefers to ‘float under the radar’. It is unlikely you will glimpse him meeting and greeting at the mounting enclosure or networking in the Champagne Bar.
He is happiest working at home, in the heart of horse country, with his wife Jodie.
“We don’t have clients apart from a couple of family friends. We’re a private horse farm and it’s wonderful; we’ve done our time of being commercial,” explained Greg from Robrick Lodge in Parkville between Scone and Mt Wingen.
“Here we’ve 900 acres and are neighbours with well-known studs Willow Park, Cressfield and Ashleigh. We sell at the Magic Millions, the Classics and the Easter sales prior to the horses having a ten-week prep.
“We’ve been in the area for 25 years and in that time bred over 550 foals. Presently we run about twenty mares with yearlings and weanlings,” continued Greg, whose father, the late Geoff White, and mother, Beryl, founded a thoroughbred dynasty with their 1982 Golden Slipper winner, Marscay. After his racing career this stallion, by Biscay out of Heart of Market, born in 1979, stood at Widden where he became a champion sire and a big breeding influence. He died in 2000.
“He produced progeny which became very good showjumpers, I believe. I’m a blinkered racehorse person,” admitted Greg, “so I don’t know all the details, but one went to the Sydney Olympics.”
That was Zazu, ridden by Jamie Coman. Zazu’s racing name was “Appraisal” – he was by Marscay out of Torn Monarch. Torn Monarch was by Sir Tristram who had a great influence on the Australian and New Zealand showjumping and eventing horses in the 80’s and 90’s.
The Whites, who have been together for ten years, have little time to attend performance horse sports.
“In the past when we were a commercial stud we’ve had fourteen on the staff but for the last two years it’s been just us,” said Jodie. “We’re very busy but we enjoy the time on our own.
“We prepare the mares for the breeding season, but we don’t foal down. A week before they’re due we send then to Riversdale about ten minutes away.”
They return to Robrick when their foals are three or four days old.
“That’s when Jodie puts all her love into them,’ said her husband. “She’s a great horsewoman and when it comes to riding she’s the most natural person I’ve ever seen on a horse.”
Whenever possible they try to get to the track to see their horses run.
“We enjoy watching them,” said Greg. “We’ve a lovely filly we love and admire. She’s had one inglorious start – but we have a lot of hope for her. My mother called her Mopitts, her dam’s Cleanup. She names all the horses and each has only seven letters – the first one was Marscay.”
And then there’s Spright (Hinchinbrook out of Dashoff). A seven-letter mare with an amazing racing career who earlier this year took out a Group 1 in Adelaide.
“She’s won over one million dollars, multiple Group 1 places and stakes wins in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide,” explained her proud breeder. “We felt the time’s come for her to return to Robrick, and a date with Zoustar has been booked for her in the spring.”
The Whites have a love of horses that transcends racing – which was why they made a commitment to the Thoroughbred Sport Horse Association.
“The TSHA’s trying to promote a greater participation of TBs into show jumping. People can buy an inexpensive OTT TB and begin jumping at low levels and upwards. The Association allows people, for not much money, to enter an event, and the riders don’t have to travel too far to participate.
“We’ll be supporting the TSHA for at least five years,” stated Greg. “The first event with which we’ll be involved is the Tamworth World Cup at AELEC and we’ll be there to have a look.
“Were very proud and happy to be part of it all.”
2019 Tamworth World Cup Show Thursday 10 – Sunday 13 October.