Bluff breeder is Onesmartfella

By Peter Wharton

Bluff oyster boat captain and hobby harness breeder John Edminstin has found a pearl in the seven-year-old Tintin In America gelding Onesmartfella.

Edminstin, probably New Zealand’s southernmost breeder, bred and originally raced the gelding, the first foal of the successful Lis Mara mare Kentucky Girl, a half-sister to the NZ 4YO Mare of the Year Bachelorette and a close relative of the NZ Derby winner Likmesiah, the Great Northern Oaks winner Smooth Gretna and current WA sensation Himself.

Trained originally by Invercargill horseman Brent Shirley, for whom he won twice, Onesmartfella was later entrusted to the Branxholme-based Nathan Williamson, who achieved back-to-back successes at Invercargill and Wyndham with him.

“He always had plenty of speed,” Edminstin said.

Onesmartfella.winning at Northern Southland 5 October 2019
(c) Race Images

The gelding was sold in April 2021 to prominent Melbourne owners Merv and Meg Butterworth, clients of champion Victorian horsewoman Kerryn Manning.

Onesmartfella won his first two starts at the Victorian provincials, then finished second and sixth in metropolitan company and, after 11 months on the sidelines, resumed his career with master Perth conditioner Ross Olivieri and, following Ross’s retirement, his partner Jemma Hayman.

From seven starts in Western Australia, Onesmartfella has so far notched two wins – both front-running efforts at Gloucester Park – three seconds and twice unplaced for $22,032 in stakes.

Onesmartfella, who has worked his way back to an NR78 mark, has lifetime stakes totalling $63,705 from eight wins and nine placings.

The gelding is being targeted at the Group 2 Nights of Thunder with heats on January 13 and the $50,000 final at Gloucester Park on January 20. It’s a race that the Butterworth’s have won twice previously, with Queen Shenandoah in 2021 and Davison’s Destiny (2009).

Since producing Onesmartfella in 2015, Kentucky Girl has left Rock Dancer, who qualified but never raced, Lorejanh, who died last year, a three-year-old filly by Vincent named Our Kincsem, who is now at the workouts with Brent Shirley, and a two-year-old filly, Donatella (by Fear The Dragon).

Onesmartfella with John and family following his 2019 win

“I’ve won 47 races as an owner and I’m hoping that Our Kincsem can win three to bring it up to 50,” the 73 year-old Edminstin, who has now retired from breeding standardbreds, said.

Edminstin previously enjoyed great success with the progeny of the royally bred Falcon Seelster mare Satire Franco. They included When The Musics Over, who won five races in NZ and 11 in Tasmania and finished up with a stake tally of $123,446, Rowchester, who won 11 and $106,174, Turbine and Dunrobin.