My passion for Welsh Ponies began in 1982 on my 21st Birthday with the gift of a Section B filly foal. Her name was Mingara Primrose (Llanerch Cavalier imp x Mingara Jasmin). This was the beginning of an obsession with this wonderful breed, and now, 34 years later our stud has grown in numbers to around 35 ponies. Never did I imagine the successes with breeding and showing that we have achieved since starting with ‘Welshies’.
Shane and I met as teenagers at Pony Club where we had both attended for several years and competed at State Level in dressage and games. I came from a non -horsey family apart from an aunt who rode and showed with Violet Murrell of Garryowen fame, but Shane’s father and uncle were both racehorse trainers. It’s great to be able to share our common interest with the ponies. Breeding and showing them is a ‘team effort’ for us.
After showing my first welsh pony, Primrose with success, I then purchased her dam Mingara Jasmin and bred her to Cennen Secretariat (imp) several times , resulting in some very successful progeny. Two of them, Tooravale Hollyhock was a Royal show winner and Tooravale Golden Ash, a top Show/Working Hunter pony who was exported to the USA as a Sport Pony.
In 1985 we attended the Weston sale where we saw Lot 2, the beautiful dun filly, Weston Philadelphia (Weston Olympian x Weston Parasol). After exceeding the limit I had set myself, we were lucky enough to take her home with us. Philadelphia was shown with great success in hand and under saddle. Her first foal, Tooravale Phantom, a dun colt by Horsegate Chancellor (imp), was a great advertisement for our young stud in the showring. Phantom was Supreme Welsh B at 1995 Sydney Royal and 1996 Melbourne Royal as well as Best Welsh B Youngstock at the 1996 Victorian All Welsh Show.
Phantom has gone on to produce some impressive stock for us, namely Charlton, Cynderella, Portrait, Perrier and more recently My Philadelphia and Armani, as well as being a popular sire for outside mares.
Philadelphia proved to be a challenge to breed from so in 1994 we opted to try embryo transfer which was successful and resulted in the birth of a full sister to Phantom, a cream filly, T.Phantasia. Philadelphia was then put to Weston Edwardian and produced another filly T.Philana. Unfortunately Philadelphia suffered with chronic laminitis and was put down at the young age of 14.
In 1991, when visiting Dilys Edwards at the Weston Stud, we spotted a beautiful cream/grey colt foal, only a week old, but he showed a huge amount of quality, welsh type, length of rein and a beautiful eye. His name was Manhattan, his dam was the famous Weston Mary Ann and his sire, the impressive Weston Cottonwood who was out of my favorite mare the beautiful Weston Choice. Both Choice and Mary Ann were Royal Welsh winners. We were lucky enough to be able to purchase Manhattan that day.
Manhattan was shown as a youngster, winning Champion Colt at the Victorian All Welsh and National Supreme Youngstock at the Silver Jubilee Welsh Show in 1995. He was also shown as a stallion, being Champion at Melbourne Royal and the Victorian All Welsh. Sadly we lost Manhattan in November 2015.
He has laid a strong foundation for our stud, giving us some exceptional females to retain and continue our breeding program with. Manhattan’s progeny have won at Royals in six states of Australia. They have great temperaments and have performed extremely well in hand and under saddle.
Over the years we have concentrated on establishing selected mares line. My favorite is the Weston Choice line. We have had four Choice granddaughters, two of them, Weston Park Candice (Eyarth Sama x Weston Chanel) and Weston Park Cassandra (Dec)(Rotherwood Casino Royale x Weston Christiana), have produced extremely well to Manhattan. We have retained their daughters, T.Celeste T.Crisiant, T.Chiffon and T.Cameo to breed on with. Next is the Weston Mary Ann line. Even though she is Manhattan’s dam , he has crossed well with her granddaughters, Kirreway Panache (dec) (Weston Cherrywood x Weston Charlotte), WP Marigold (Weston Olympian x WP Magnolia), and , WP Magnolia(dec) the dam of our T. My Philadelphia.
We also have the Weston Twilight line. This brings some section A influence back into our ponies. We used Manhattan over two Twilight daughters , W.Teresa and W.Tatiana who are both by W.Olympian. We have retained daughters out of both these mares.
Other successful mare lines we have are Weston Picture, Weston Jessica and Cnapaton Verona. We have retained young females from these lines to add to our strong band of mares.
Weston Miranda (W.Olympian x Weston Dancing Maid) has also had an influence here. We have her daughter, the very successful T.Ivory, who is by Manhattan, and several grand daughters by WP Iolanthe, who is by Eyarth Sama and out of Miranda. In 2010 we purchased Imperial Honora (Eyarth Tigra x Derralea Honour) who goes back to Weston Chippendale, Belvoir Hollyhock and Chamberlayne Don Juan, she proved to be an excellent cross with Manhattan, producing T.Highlander, Harlech, Honolulu, Miss Manhattan and Houston her most famous son. Houston was purchased as a foal in 2013 by the Heniarth Stud UK he remained here and was shown as a foal winning a medal and again as a yearling where he was Best Youngstock Male at the Victorian All Welsh Show. He covered mares here in 2014 then was exported to Wales in May 2015 where he covered mares at Heniarth.
We had a challenge of finding the right stallion to use over the Manhattan daughters. In 2008 we purchased Weston Park Vision (Eyarth Sama x Weston Park Venus(Weston Cottonwood x Weston Park Vogue). This cross has proved to be very successful producing some outstanding fillies for us.
On a visit to the UK in 2010 we were lucky enough to be offered a lease on the very successful colt Heniarth Wood Wind who is by Lemonshill Top Note and out of the very famous mare Eyarth Windflower. Wood Wind went into quarantine over the UK winter and was collected from and the frozen semen sent to us here. So far we have one Wood Wind female and a two year old colt on the ground here, both very impressive with extravagant movement, lovely bone and height, we will retain both to breed on with. We were also lucky enough to be offered semen of Adagio De L’aurore from Ingrid Delaitre in France, this will give us another outcross for our Manhattan females.
Looking further down the track, we have retained a son by Manhattan, Tooravale Castaway who is out of Weston Park Candice, a granddaughter of Weston Choice. Castaway is a very impressive pony who is right up to height, and an exceptional mover, he was Best Youngstock B at the 2010 Victorian All Welsh Show. We believe he will be of great value to us in the future for using over our Phantom daughters and Manhattan granddaughters. He has proven himself already by producing the outstanding and very successful gelding Tooravale Repertiore. We also purchased a filly Weston Park Vanilla, she is by the Dutch bred stallion Steehorst Kyro and out of Weston Park Venus, For her first foal Vanilla produced a very nice colt by Tooravale Houston (exp UK)
We consider that our stud is still very young and we have a long way to go to achieve our ultimate goals. There will always be the challenges that face breeders every season but that is what keeps our enthusiasm alive.
By being involved in breeding and showing ponies over the past 30 years, we have formed some great friendships with so many people both here and abroad, who share the same enthusiasm and passion for the breed as we do.
We are located in the picturesque coastal village of Tooradin approximately 50km South East of Melbourne, Australia.
Over the years Tooravale ponies have excelled in all disciplines of equestrian. Visitors to our stud are always most welcome and we thank you for viewing our website.