Pierata sale a 'life-changer' for owners

4 min read
The owners of G1 All Aged S. winner Pierata are celebrating a 'life-changing' moment after it was confirmed that Aquis Farm had agreed to purchase the son of Pierro to stand in 2019.

Pierata was bought for just $160,000 by trainer Greg Hickman at the 2016 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale and earned his large syndicate of owners over $3.3m in a 19-start career which yielded seven wins, highlighted by his much-deserved success at Randwick last Saturday.

His racetrack journey is now over after the owners signed a Heads of Agreement with a major stud this week, meaning the 4-year-old will retire immediately.

Aquis Farm confirmed it was the stud negotiating with the owners but that the deal was still subject to a veterinary inspection as well as the fulfilment of insurance requirements.

Confirmation of the deal as well as a likely first-season stallion fee is expected next week.

Pierata winning the G1 All Aged S.

Owner Adam Carney told Sky Racing Radio that it had been a big week for the owners, culminating in commercial terms being agreed to on Tuesday.

"It's been no secret that we've had a lot of interest in the horse over the course of his career and it came to head after his win on the weekend. The ownership group together with (trainer) Greg (Hickman) thought it was the right time," Carney said.

"Everyone is very excited about his future career at stud." - Owner Adam Carney

"Everyone is very excited about his future career at stud. It’s a deal that we have accepted and it’s life changing for a lot of us and it’s just an exciting time to be a part of him."

Stallion value

Like most stallion deals, the final commercial terms in terms of price won’t be publicised but Carney said the offer was a significant one in the current market.

"Put it this way, they met the market. They met what our expectations of the value of the horse were. All I can say that we are very happy with the result and we are looking forward to him producing those little babies and we can get involved with a few of those as well," he said.

Gallery: Part of Pierata's very enthusiastic ownership group

"We signed a Heads of Agreement contract and we are bound by a lot of confidentiality clauses there and we have to be respectful of that. The stud is over the moon and we are as well. We're just looking forward to moving forward with him."

Carney paid tribute to Hickman, who not only purchased the horse but prepared him throughout his career.

"I've come to call them the Pierata family and we’ve made some unbelievable friendships and we are like family." - Adam Carney

"It was a dream fulfilled for everyone concerned on the weekend, especially for Greg. He is more than a trainer to us, he is a friend and to get Greg that result, with the super job he's done, he's probably the most underrated horseman in the country. We are very thankful for the opportunity to race this horse," he said.

"Everyone in the horse is so enthusiastic about it, I've come to call them the Pierata family and we’ve made some unbelievable friendships and we are like family."

Special moment

Hickman himself described the moment as 'life changing' for he and his wife Erika.

"When you get the chance to retire a horse to stud, and race their progeny, it’s just a whole new chapter of your training career," he told RSN.

"I saw that happen when I was working at Crown Lodge and the effect it had on John Hawkes to train those champion horses like Octagonal and see them go on and produce good horses themselves."

Pierata's jockey Tommy Berry and trainer Greg Hickman

Pierata becomes the first son of Coolmore's Pierro to be confirmed to stand at stud. He is one of four Group 1 winners for Pierro and one of eight stakes winners from his first crop.

Pierata was bred by Hobartville Stud and is out of November Flight, the Group 3-winning daughter of Flying Spur who has also produced the Group 3 winner Ashokan (More Than Ready {USA}).

November Flight's yearling colt by Rubick sold for $900,000 at the recent Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, while she is back in foal to Pierro.