Honour Scroll and Dexter Dunn are joined by owners Keith and Tracey Norman after victory at Winton. Photo: Wild Range Photography.
The south-eastern corner of New Zealand, known as the Catlins, has produced its share of high profile horses and horse people but has never been a training centre of note.
In fact, Brian Norman is the only trainer based there and at Winton on Sunday, Honour Scroll became his fourth individual winner for the season.
Norman is based at Tahakopa, about 55 kilometres south of Balclutha and 50 east of Wyndham, his closest track. His property is both a training establishment and a farm, on which he grazes sheep, cattle and horses.
“I have up to 12 in training, I take five or six to Wyndham once a week usually,” Norman said. “I use Tautuku Beach during the winter but at this time of the year there are too many people.”
Essence Of Easton, Boomer and Ace Commander have been Norman's earlier winners this term and, like Honour Scroll, they were driven by Dexter Dunn.
Honour Scroll is raced by Norman's brother and sister-in-law, Keith and Tracey Norman, who stand the four-year-old's sire Washington VC at their Bryleigh Stud.
She is out of On Scroll, a member of Ian Bennett's good breed and half-sister to his good mare On The Double.
Two Ply, out of On The Double, was a winner at Oamaru on Saturday.
On Scroll is by Soky's Atom and the Normans borrowed her to breed Honour Scroll on the same magical cross that produced Themightyquinn.
The Normans also bred the Washington VC four-year-old Zealand Star who made it three from his past five at Winton for owners, the Butterworth Racing Syndicate, and trainer Brett Gray.
“He's won a maiden and a Nuggets Final; the Grand Final on Northern Southland Cup Day (10 March), will probably be next aim,” said Gray, who also trained the runner-up Young Conqueror.
The Doug McLachlan-trained Kagee VC made it three for the veteran sire on the day.
Robbie Holmes scored trainer-driver wins with Kiwis Are Flying and Kiwi On Show, sister and brother by Bettor's Delight from former grand mare Kiwi Ingenuity.