During the recent National 2YO sale Mauritzfontein was one of the leading vendors selling 14 homebred horses and 7 horses as an agent. “Our drafts were looking spectacular, Gail Page worked magic with them and we could not be prouder. We have some very flash pedigrees and a few less fashionable ones,” said owner Jessica Jell.
She was especially proud of the progeny by Ideal World who have done well this past season (highest average earnings on the National log for the 2018 – 2019 season).
Their highlight lot, Concord, a 2YO colt out of a Jet Master mare, so the same cross as Rainbow Bridge, he is called Concord was sold for R 525000.
The Impact spoke to Mauritzfontein Stud owner Jessica Jell about their matings and much more:
Q: How do you plan high-quality matings? And how far in advance do you plan these matings? A: The matings take a long time and we seek a lot of advice both from the experts on the farm (Mike Sharkey and Nigel Page) and from Jehan Malherbe at Form Bloodstock. Sometimes they are planned a year in advance and other times you need to see their foals know what works. Also if any of their progeny fire during the year, one might be tempted to send that mare back to which ever stallion has proved a successful cross.
Q: How large is your many stallions do you have in-house? And how big is your current broodmare band and who is your top mare? A: We currently have two stallions, Ideal World and a new stallion by Deep Impact, called Danon Platina. We have about 75 mares and after the awards yesterday Ireland pops to mind as a top broodmare.
Q: From a current lot of freshman sires, who do you think will become a leading name in a few years? And why? A: I have been in this game long enough to know that any guess I have will probably be wrong.
Q: Please tell us about your journey with the farm and the history of the farm itself? A: My journey with Mauritzfontein began properly about 6 years ago, when my grandmother passed away. We used to love visiting the farm with her before this, but 6 years ago I decided this is what I wanted to do with my life. The farm was bought my grandparents in 1947 and so it is a very great privilege for me to be able to be a part of something which such a rich history already. There is the most fabulous management team on the farm, and I have been so lucky to be able to learn from the best. I got my love of horses from my mother, who is an amazing horsewoman and I am married to a man whose knowledge and experience far outweighs my own. We moved from Johannesburg to the farm about 4 years ago and can say without a doubt that I have never been happier.
Q: What do you enjoy doing outside of racing and breeding? The decade is about to end. What were the big records you broke in the decade and what is on your bucket list for the next decade? A: My husband I love the bushveld and so we travel there as often as we can. We love to fish and so fishing trips are always a treat. There are many highlights of the last decade. Smart Call (homebred Ideal World filly) winning the Met and travelling to the UK is definitely a stand out for me. Our first sales draft from Mauritzfontein, as previously my grandparents never sold any yearlings and now being part of the Wilgerbosdrift and Mauritzfontein team and winning the Breeders Championship for the first time, is a real honour. The best thing about this sport though are the horses themselves, the people and the friends one makes. It’s a community of likeminded, often crazy people, and we are all always dreaming of the next big thing.
Q: Please tell us about the most interesting book you have read recently or the most interesting movie you have watched? What did you like about it? A: I am currently reading a book called “Start with why” by Simon Sinek that I am loving. It has great insight on how to look at inspiring teams and achieving goals. To be honest the only movie I have watched in the last few years is Bohemian Rhapsody. I really enjoyed it and of course have been singing Queen songs in my head ever since.