Trans-Tasman mare produces another Addington winner for Edge

By Duane Ranger

The progeny of Alan Edge’s 2009 Bettor’s Delight mare, Ella Fitzgerald is producing winners on both sides of the Tasman.

Edge paid just $5,000 for Ella Fitzgerald at the 2011 Yearling Sale in Christchurch. She’s now left two foals for Edge in New Zealand and two more in Australia.

“I leased her to Chris Garrard in Brisbane, and the mare has now had winners in both countries. She’s done very well considering the price I paid for her,” Weedons-based Edge said.

Ella Fitzgerald’s last winner came via her first foal at Addington Raceway on Friday (November 25). That’s when the Edge-trained and John Dunn driven Off The Edge notched up his fifth career win in race 10.

Her only other winner to date has come via foal number foal three – the 2018 Changeover gelding, Mullum Guido.

John Dunn with Alan Edge

The Darren Weeks trained, and Angus Garrard driven 3–year-old is currently spelling after nailing Redcliffe Paceway victories on January 12 and 20 this year.

Edge said Ella Fitzgerald won two of her 26 starts in 2013 and 2014. She also placed twice and banked $12,426 before being retired in March 2014.

“We then put her to Art Official and Off The Edge was born in October 2015. She was actually quite a nice racehorse, but sadly she had a weak knee joint, and my brother Neil (trainer) just couldn’t get her right, and retired her in her 4-year-old year,” Edge said.

Ella Fitzgerald’s only other New Zealand-based foal, the 2016 Sir Lincoln unregistered mare, is currently in work.

“She’s a big powerful mare, who is in full work now.  She’s still a bit too big for her frame, but is coming to it nicely.

“She’s one of 10 I’ve got in work, but her brother Off The Edge) is the best I’ve got at the moment. He’s won five. He’s a nice pacer, who hasn’t finished yet. I thought he would finish in the top three on Friday,” Edge said.

Ella Fitzgerald’s first Australia foal was Mullum Guido, who has now won two of his nine starts and placed in two others – all at the mighty Redcliffe Paceway.

Meanwhile Chris Garrard’s son, Daren, said the broodmare had since left a Changeover yearling filly which will go to next year’s yearling sales in Brisbane.

“She will go to the Sunshine Stars Sale here in March. We lost a Changeover yearling filly out of her the year before in a paddock accident. The mare is currently in foal to Poster Boy,” Garrard said.

Ella Fitzgerald is the first of five foals, and only winner, out of the 2003 Holmes Hanover One-win mare Jazzy. She is closely related to the 16-win ($341,975 ) 1984 Lordship colt, Starship.

As for Edge, he’s a Rakaia native, who was born into harness racing. His Dad, Noel, trained Loyal Drift to win the 1973 New Zealand Oaks, and his Uncle Stephen trained Invicta to win the 1961 New Zealand Trotting Cup.

“I actually went into the agriculture sector after I left Waitaki Boys (High School), where I was a boarder in Oamaru. Dad was an agricultural contractor, and I did about 14 years doing that while I played around with horses.

“Then I came to Christchurch and set up a demolition company called ‘Southern Demolition’ It’s now expanded into one of the largest demolition companies in New Zealand,” the Weedons horseman said.

As well as being a life-time breeder, Edge has also trained 23 winners since 2016 and boasts one junior driving win in 1977 and 26 as an advanced amateur driver, since 2013.

He said he was yet to breed a champion.

“That’s just around the corner,” Edge said.