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New Zealand champion sire Thorn Park dies at 13

THE New Zealand breeding industry has suffered a major blow with the death of the country's former champion sire Thorn Park at Windsor Park Stud on Saturday.

The Australian-bred son of Spinning World sucumbed to a long-running and deep infection in the navicular bone of his near-hind foot, which had disrupted his covering season. He was 13.

A statement by Windsor Park Stud said: "Over the past few months every effort has been made by veterinarians and staff to overcome the infection, which also gave rise to laminitis in his off-hind foot.

"While good progress had been made in the lamanitic foot unfortunately the infection in his near-hind foot proved insurmountable."

Thorn Park was crowned champion New Zealand sire in the 2010-11 season thanks primarily to his son Jimmy Choux, whose victories included the New Zealand Derby and the Rosehill Guineas in Australia.

The sire has another star on his hands in the shape of Ocean Park, who won four Group 1 contests in Australia and New Zealand - the Challenge Stakes, the Underwood Stakes, the Caulfield Stakes and the Cox Plate - in September and October.

From six crops of racing age Thorn Park has sired 17 stakes winners, five of whom scored at the highest level.

In his own racing career Thorn Park was trained by Bob Thomsen to win the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap in Australia.





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