Withyslade Farm has this week taken delivery of its first stallion, the 2003 Irish 2,000 Guineas winner Indian Haven.
Purchased recently from owners Peter Gleeson and Loz Conway, Indian Haven has stood since his retirement from the track at the Irish National Stud.
“Peter gave us the chance to buy him and he was really keen for him to stand in England,” says David Bond, who owns and runs Withyslade with his wife Helen, a former event rider. “It has always been at the back of our minds to stand a stallion. We’ve had mares for six or seven years and this was the next step really. We’re not ones for sitting about.”
Based in Tisbury Row in Wiltshire, Withyslade is more than just a thoroughbred stud. Along with the 50 horses, the farm also has a pheasant shoot, a herd of South Devon Cattle and holiday cottages on the 270-acre estate.
“We bought the farm five and a half years ago,” explains Bond, a former racing farrier. “It’s a great area with plenty of owner/breeders based locally. Whitsbury Manor Stud is not far away and Tobougg is just down the road [at Clarendon Farm].”
Now 11, Indian Haven is a son of the late Indian Ridge from Cliveden Stud’s good broodmare Madame Dubois, whose other Group 1 winner is the South African-based stallion Count Dubois. The high-achieving family includes Kitewood, Daggers Drawn, Imperial Stride and Mores Wells. Indian Haven’s runners, the eldest of which are now five, include Group winners Ashram and Aspen Darlin plus Listed winners Beachfire and Tellovoi.
Bond says: “I was looking for a good big stamp of a horse with a reasonably stout pedigree. The page is there and he’s come up with some decent offspring. He has also recently had his first winner of a novice chase.
“My main aim is to promote him as a flat stallion but I wouldn’t put off any jumping mares. It’s going to be about getting people to the farm to see him.”
The Bonds are owner/breeders and currently have horses in training with Alan King, Matthew Salaman and two in France with Rod Collet.