Welcome to TDNAusNZ’s ‘It Takes A Team’, brought to you in conjunction with Thoroughbred Industry Careers. Here we highlight and celebrate some of the heroes of our industry. The strappers, riders, stud-workers and people behind the scenes of our champions. The people who are up late into the night foaling or up at the crack of dawn to trackwork, working tirelessly to keep the industry running.
Today we chat to Newgate's yearling manager, who has just prepared one of Newgate's biggest ever drafts for sale. Jock Harris started out working on stud farms in New Zealand before travelling the world and eventually ending up in Australia.
Jock Harris - Yearling Manager
TDN: Tell us a bit about yourself, how did you get started in the industry?
Jock Harris: I started my career in the thoroughbred industry in my school years where I was sent by my next-door neighbour, Richard Rutherford of Beltana to work for Waikato stud for a summer of yearling prep. I haven't stopped since and the rest is history
TDN: Have you spent a lot of time working overseas?
JH: I've been very lucky and this industry has taken me all over the world. I was selected to do the Irish National Stud Course in 2013 on a scholarship presented by Taylor Trust which opened a lot of doors for me. I also spent time at Highclere Stud in the UK, Lane's End in America I and spent one month with Bruce Harvey in Hong Kong for the HKJC breeze up sale.
TDN: Do you think the international experience helped get you to where you are today?
JH: 100% and most importantly the people I met along the way.
TDN: How long have you been yearling manager at Newgate?
JH: The last 3 yearling seasons .
TDN: You presented one of Newgate’s biggest ever yearling drafts at the recent MM Sale, was there more pressure trying to get such a large number of horses ready for sale?
JH: Of course there were some serious challenges involved in preparing such a big draft, but boy oh boy was it rewarding to see that 100% clearance rate. I have a fantastic team at Newgate around me who support me in everything that is required.
TDN: Who is your favourite horse you’ve ever taken through the ring?
JH: Fleur de here x Fastnet Rock Easter 2017, She was a queen and her price tag reflected it
TDN: What do you do during the off- season from yearlings?
JH: Raise the future champions of Newgate .
TDN: What’s your favourite sale of the year?
JH: Magic Millions on the Gold Coast – you can't get much better, although unfortunately I never actually make it to the beach…
TDN: Do you have any advice to anyone looking to become a yearling manager?
JH: There are a few quotes that I have always lived by since starting in this industry :
- “You get that on the big jobs.”
- “Assumption is the mother of all f*#k ups.”
- “Go to the tap, not the drips.”
These have served me pretty well so far.