Tony Barron, who has parted ways with brother Ken. Photo: Race Images.
Change is in the wind at one of the country’s biggest stables with Tony Barron moving on from his two-year training partnership with brother Ken.
Tony has shifted next door, to the property owned by Ray Jenkins, and will train his team from there in the future.
“My wife and I are just going to do a small team; we’re aiming for about eight to ten in work.
“We’ve rented half of Ray’s barn and will be focusing on quality rather than quantity.”
Barron and wife Cheryl sold their farm in Makarewa and moved north in 2016, Barron joining up with Ken and Blair Orange to form a super stable, one which had as many as 60 horses on the books at times.
Across last season and this one to date, they trained 90 winners.
Barron unashamedly admits that he is looking forward to a much smaller workload.
“It’s going to be bloody good, actually; a lot less hassles.
“We’ve still got some good owners to train for and there are nine weanlings to come through and sell.”
Barron has been breeding professionally for a while now and has mares based all over the country from Woodands Stud at Auckland down to Bryleigh Stud in Gore.
“We’re probably going to scale back a few of those as well and focus on the best few mares.
“There will still be plenty to keep us going, there’s no doubt about that.”
Barron says he leaves his brother’s with “no animosity or anything”, he just says it’s time to get “back to basics”.
“We were always coming up to Christchurch, we didn’t make the move just to join with Ken.
“It just timed in nicely and the opportunity came up at the right time.”
The move left Ken with approximately 30 horses in work and plenty of quality stock to go on with, Tony reckoned.
He says the horse getting him most excited is a rising three-year-old Bettor’s Delight colt named Global Domination.
“Without being too clever about it, I’m hoping he will be our best one; he qualified at the cup trials and is showing us a lot.”
Those familiar trips to Auckland will be back on the radar, too.
“Definitely, when that extra money comes on stream in March we will be looking to take advantage of that.
“We’re lucky in that we have a number of close relationships up there and I will definitely be looking to bring them up myself or send them to the likes of Josh Dickie to capitalize on the good stakes.”
For now, they’re enjoying a well-earned Gold Coast holiday before returning to the new set-up next week.
“I’ve just cracked open my first Peroni, actually.”
In other partnership news, Tim Butt is not renewing his training license in the new season, leaving Jonny Cox the solo name at Premier Stables in West Melton.
And Invercargill pair Tank Ellis and Kirstin Barclay will link up in the new season, forming a dual-base stable that offers beach training facilities.
“This will open up some awesome opportunities with us being the only professional beach training operation in Southland,” said Barclay.
“We will also continue to concentrate on developing young stock at the Tisbury barn.”