Looks Like The Cat sold to Hong Kong interests in deal “too good to refuse”
OWNER Troy Schmidt has revealed the successful offer to sell Looks Like The Cat to Hong Kong was “too good to refuse”.
After months of speculation and five official requests to buy, the star Queensland three-year-old was sold to overseas interests on Tuesday and will be trained by last season’s champion Hong Kong trainer Caspar Fownes.
Managing owner Schmidt spoke while Looks Like The Cat was being loaded onto a float at his River Junction Farm in Gympie on Tuesday and said he had mixed emotions about the sale.
After purchasing Looks Like The Cat for $60,000 as a weanling in May 2012, Schmidt also bought his mother Fiery Dee for $10,000 at a Patinack Farm broodmare sale months later and said the future still looked bright for his breeding operation.
“I’ve got mixed feelings about the sale but we are breeders and we have got to be seen to be sellers,” he said.
“It’s a bit exciting really because we’ve got a half-sister to him by Murtajill going through the (Magic Millions) yearling sale in January and we have a full sister to him on the ground and the mare is 45 days positive to Snitzel.
“All of (Fiery Dee’s foals) will be for sale and we have recently purchased Fiery Dee’s sister as part of our broodmare band as well.”
Schmidt, who sold Looks Like The Cat for $175,000 prior to his first start only for the deal to fall through, did not reveal how much the Husson gelding was sold for but said the offer “was too good to refuse”.
Schmidt said in October that he had already knocked back multiple offers in excess of $1 million for Looks Like The Cat as he wanted to race him on until at least the end of the spring carnival.
Schmidt was hoping to claim an elusive Group 1 win with Looks Like The Cat in the Caulfield Guineas and while it didn’t pan out, trainer Tony Gollan is confident he will still breakthrough at the top level.
“What we’ve seen is only a drop in the ocean to the ability the horse has got and he is nowhere near his full potential yet,” Gollan said.
“I don’t know enough about the racing over there but I definitely felt there was a Group 1 in him in Australia and if you can win a Group 1 here you can win a Group 1 there.”
Gollan has trained Group 1 winners Spirit Of Boom and Temple Of Boom but said Looks Like The Cat was potentially the best horse he has put a saddle on.
The Husson gelding leaves Australia with only one win next to his name from seven starts but he has notched five Group placings already.