Death of Indian Ridge's breeder Averil Whitehead
AVERIL Whitehead, who bred the great stallion Indian Ridge, died on Wednesday aged 86.
Whitehead owned Broadfield and Owenstown Studs, the first of which was where Indian Ridge was foaled. She bought Broadfield Stud with her late husband Bill Whitehead in 1959.
Brought up at Owenstown Stud, her father, Frank Tuttle, was a breeder and a racecourse judge. She was his shadow from an early age and later took up the reins from him, inheriting the stud when he died. She latterly had a broodmare band of eight mares at Broadfield Stud.
Her nephew, John Tuttle, took over the running of Owenstown Stud in 1997. He said: "She has been my mentor and my advisor. She was always very modest, not one to complain, very shrewd and with a great eye for a horse. She always had a great sense of humour."
Whitehead liked to have a horse in training, and employed Kevin Prendergast and Dermot Weld to prepare her runners.
Indian Ridge won the Duke Of York Stakesand the King's Stand Stakes and was by the strong speed influence Ahonoora. Like his sire, he latterly stood at the Irish National Stud, and produced ten Group 1 winners including Ridgewood Pearl, Indian Haven, Compton Place, Namid, Domedriver and Linngari as well as the jumps sire Definite Article.
Whitehead also bred stakes winners Evening Time, Maledetto, Sondrio, Bussalino and Negligent.
Her funeral will be held at St Davids in Naas on Saturday at 11am, the burial will follow in Moyglare. Please contact John Tuttle for further details.