It’s not an occupation for the faint hearted: Long hours, testing days, a lot of blood, sweat and tears. Morgan + English is privileged to be the law firm of choice for a young couple’s exciting new business venture, Parrakoola Park. We believe they have the rain, hail or shine attitude to make it in the thoroughbred industry.
We talk to Jack Buckley and Beth Grant of Parrakoola Park about their past, present, future and why having a thoroughbred specialist law firm helped them jump strongly out of the barriers.
Why Parrakoola Park?
Parrakoola Park is located in Kulnura on the Central Coast of New South Wales. Being close to the coast it enjoys a good amount of rainfall. The farm has lush green grass year round and is close to transport links, and offers safe and secure fencing for foals through to older thoroughbred stock.
The boutique farm has room for about 40 horses with regular paddock rotation. “We offer foaling down, horse spelling, walk out services and sales preparation. We live on farm to ensure the best possible care is achieved for the Parrakoola horses.”
Tell us about your background?
Beth Grant with horse
Beth came from a non-horsey family and started riding lessons when she was 12.
At 17, she started working for Newcastle thoroughbred trainer, Paul Perry, while completing her Business Management Certificate at Maitland TAFE. She then took on a fulltime job with Tony Bott at Evergreen Stud, where she rode pre-trainers, had two extremely busy breeding seasons, sales preparations and attended yearling sales. After two years at Evergreen, she moved to the Upper Hunter and started working for Julie Harris at Holbrook Thoroughbreds. At Holbrook she gained a lot of confidence and knowledge thanks to larger breeding and sales seasons, and the added responsibilities that came with being the farm’s Yearling Manager, and Assistant Broodmare Manager.
What do you enjoy the most?
Beth reckons her favourite on-the-job experience is prepping a yearling that is difficult and tests her patience. “Finally getting them to the sale with a lot of hard work and having them sell well above their reserve. It’s a great feeling for the client and myself knowing I have put in 110% to get that horse there,” she says.
Beth has a strong admiration for people that started from nothing and built up a farm on their own, she hopes to go down in history as one of those greats.
Jack Buckley of Parrakoola Park
Jack has been involved with thoroughbreds since he was 13, educating and pre-training horses on weekends and school holidays. After completing his HSC, he began his full time journey with thoroughbreds at the Messara’s Arrowfield Stud where he was involved with some serious horse flesh like Sooboog and Spill the Beans. He also worked for the Chitticks in New Zealand at Waikato Stud assisting in the preparation of up to 70 yearlings for sale.
He spent the past three years as a stallion handler at major breeding operations, Swettenham Stud and Newgate Farm, and completed a breeding/ foaling course at Scone TAFE.
What has been your biggest influence?
Jack credits the late Tim Jones of Swettenham Stud for giving him a lot of confidence as a horseman and shaping his mindset that the industry wasn’t just a man’s game, it was a woman’s as well.
“There’s a lot of influential people in this industry the ones that are truly influential to me are those that start from nothing , the battler stories, they’re the stories I love,” says Jack.
Mane being done by Beth
How did Morgan + English help Parrakoola?
“Morgan + English was so helpful with starting out and giving us all the information we needed. Without them we wouldn’t know half the things we do now, they have a great client relationship and are very welcoming to everyone with anything,” says Beth.
“Having a firm that knows your industry is critical, they know what you need and when you need it.”
What is in the Future for Parrakoola Park?
Jack and Beth have plenty of plans and ideas to keep improving and developing. Their main goal is to have happy, healthy horses and to give outstanding results to their clients. In the future they plan to expand to a more commercial thoroughbred stud.