Anj Mugford’s first breeding winner – Mr Cash Man – does it again 

By Duane Ranger 


Five-year-old Shadow Play brown gelding, Mr Cash Man, provided Leeston breeder Anj Mugford with her fourth breeding win at Ascot Park Friday, 15th September – but you can’t help but think this was just the fourth of many. 

Anj Mugford and Scott Iremonger.

In fact, Mr Cash Man, has now provided Anj with all four of her breeding victories, thanks to a $300 deal Mugford snapped up at the All-Age Sale In Christchurch in 2016. 

“That’s what I paid for Tactile Franco, who was in foal to Shadow Play at the time. I thought it was a great deal because the mare looked beautiful, and I did like her family. 

“Then Mr Cash Man was born on December 12, 2017. He was the first foal I had bred, and you can now see why he got his name. I got a deal,” Mugford said. 

The late Tactile Franco was an unraced Badlands Hanover – Tangible Franco (Holmes Hanover) 

The Nathan Williamson trained, and Oliver Kite driven Mr Cash Man proved too good out in front in race four holding on to win the junior drivers event by half-a-head. It was his fourth win in 19 starts for his owners – the Central Courage Syndicate. 

“I broke him in and qualified him, and then he had three starts for me before Peter Lagan got in touch and asked if I wanted to sell him. He said there were some fellas down south that were looking for a horse like him. I’m delighted for them.  

“It’s such a thrill to see your baby develop, grow, and then win for others. I enjoy breeding despite a few mishaps with Mr Cash Man’s Mum,” Mugford said.  

The Spreydon Lodge-bred Tactile Franco had left nine foals before Mr Cash Man was born. The most successful foal here in New Zealand was foal three, the 2009 McArdle gelding, Tiago Bromac, who won nine races here and $70,132. 

Cash and his Mum Tactile

“Sadly, the foal after Mr Cash Man – Daddy’s Dollars (2019 Highview Tommy colt) – was born with a crooked leg which had a cyst and died in April 2021. Then the mare missed to Raging Bull in 2020, and then sadly she died in a paddock accident aged 18,” Mugford said. 

But the loss of Tactile Franco and her foals didn’t deter Mugford. 

“I love breeding and love what Mr Cash Man is doing. My partner Scott (Iremonger) and I live on my parents (Neil and Sue) property, and we have always had a lot of horses on the property, and there are quite a few foals and weanlings. 

She said was also breeding from the Kevin Fairbairn-bred and trained 19-year-old Presidential Ball – Filenna (Wee Win) one-win mare, Magical Mills. 

“She had four foals for Kevin and since then I’ve bred a Locharburn yearling filly named Magical Madeleine, and she is now in foal to Soho Tribeca. 

“I’d say Magical Mills is probably my favourite mare, but I also like our grey mare named Playful Pride (9-year-old Monkey Bones – First Pride – Sundon maiden mare). 

“She has left me a grey Royal Aspirations weanling colt named Silver Bird, and is in foal to Imperial Count.” 

Mugford said she was also breeding a trotter, which also hailed from Fairbairn’s progeny. 

“I’m also breeding from Piper Highlander and she is due to give birth to a Royal Aspirations foal very soon. She was out of the six-win 19-year-old Armbro Invasion mare, Lexie Highlander,” Mugford said. 

Mugford was born in Leeston and educated at Ellesmere College. She is the youngest of four sisters after Tania, Louise, and Nicola. 

“We had a sheep farm (200 acres), but I wasn’t allowed a horse until I was 14 and I was old enough to look after it myself. That was pretty good advice really. 

“I never did Kidz Kartz but went and worked for Bryce Buchanan and he taught me a lot, and then I went and worked for Terry Chmiel before doing vet nursing for a year. I then got a job working with farm animals. I met Scott a couple of years ago and have really got involved in the industry full-on since then. 

“I really love breeding and I enjoy training. I’m pleased horses are a part of my life,” Mugford said. 

Mugford, who is sponsored by Somerset Racing Stables & Equestrian, has trained two winners since she took out her licence in 2017. 

They came via Night Lights and Ruthless Lizzie at Akaroa, and Blenheim, on December 15, 2019, and January 16, 2022, respectively. 

Junior driver, Mugford reined Night Lights to win by a neck, and in doing so paid $113.60 to win from gate nine. Iremonger drove Ruthless Lizzie. 

Night Lights has been Mugford’s only driving success to date. She formerly owned and trained the 8-year-old Grinfromeartoear – Town Life (Life Sign) one-win mare. 

“I offer breeding, foaling, weaning and agistment to outside clients as well as doing my own. I would like to get more involved with that. I have space for more mares this season,” Mugford said.