You can bet on a Tiger!

By Peter Wharton

When Pukekohe breeders Lindsay and Pam Turner outlaid a modest $2,000 for a Butler B G yearling filly at the National Bloodstock dispersal sale at Karaka in 1990 little did they realise that she would become the matriarch of one of the best families in the NZ stud book.

Bet On The Tiger as a foal with his dam Tiger Tina

The filly that was knocked down that day was Tigerish (Butler BG – Tiger Dale, Tiger Wave).

“She was the second last lot at the sale and being bred to northern hemisphere time, she was quite small,” Pam Turner said.

Trained throughout her career by Lindsay Turner, Tigerish totted up 15 wins – including eight at Group level – and $491,957 in stakes and took a mile mark of 1:57.

“She was the NZ 2YO Filly, 3YO Filly and 4YO Mare of the Year,” Pam said.

“When she won the International Sales Classic 2YO Final at Alexandra Park she was still only a yearling. One of her biggest wins was the Noel Taylor Mile beating Chokin.”

In the breeding barn, Tigerish produced 12 foals, of which seven were winners including three in 2:00 or better, but none were in the same class as their dam.

All six of Tigerish’s daughters have left winners. Among their progeny have been the four-time Group winner All Tiger 1:49.2 ($496,107), the Group 1 Westbred 3YO Classic winner One Off Delight 1:53.2 ($289,691), the exported Bit Of A Tiger (1:50.2), the Gloucester Park winners Suing You 1:56.2 ($111,227), Linc’s Tiger (1:53.4) and Tiger Royal (1:57.3), the Albion Park victors Sir Tiger (1:55.6) and Ideal Tiger (1:56.6) and the Menangle winner Tiger Tina 1:53.8 ($104,877).

The last-named figures as the dam of recent Melton three-year-old winner Bet On The Tiger.

The Betting Line gelding was bred by the Turner’s and good friends Keith and Vanessa Shadbolt.

“We sold Bet On The Tiger at the Auckland sale in 2020 for $50,000 to the American owners Gordon Banks and Marc Hanover,” Pam said.

“He was a lovely big, strong colt that we always felt would make the grade.”

Bet On The Tiger won only once from 15 appearances in NZ before being sold to prominent Bendigo owners Eric and Heather Anderson three months ago.

He has won twice and been twice placed from seven starts in his adopted country.

Tiger Tina, the dam of Bet On The Tiger, has produced four foals for four sub 2:00 winners. Other winners from her have been Tiger Swift 1:56.5 (5 wins), Tiger Taylor 1:56.8 (4 wins to date) and Richmond Tiger (1:58.6), now racing in NSW.

Race 4: Tabcorp Park, Saturday 6-8-2022
Hip Pocket Workwear & Safety 3yo Pace
Winner: Bet On The Tiger (4)
Trainer: Julie Douglas; Driver: Jack Laugher
Race Distance: 2,240 metres, Mile Rate: 1.58.8
photography: Stuart McCormick

Tiger Tina is carrying a positive test to American Ideal, while her daughter Tiger Swift has left a weanling filly by Bettor’s Delight and is in foal to Bettor’s Wish. A Christian Cullen half-sister in Tiger Cher has produced a yearling filly by Betting Line named Tiger Babe, who has been broken in and is now spelling.

Tiger J Lo, a three-year-old sister to Tiger Babe, is owned by the Shadbolt’s who also race Tiger Taylor, an impressive winner at Addington last month.