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Ownership a passion for Peta and Paul

It will be a case of not knowing where to look for owners Paul Ninnis and wife Peta Southern-Ninnis in the opening race at Morphettville on Saturday.

They have shares in three of the eight runners – Crown Mint and Ice Ghost from the Gordon Richards and Damien Moyle stable along with Kalamon for Richard and Chantelle Jolly.

“I think we actually had four nominated for that race,’’ Paul Ninnis said.

“We’ve never had more than two in the one race before. I would much rather have one in every race but that is just the way it has panned out,’’ he said.

With shares in over 30 horses on their books, it’s rare that the couple aren’t trackside at Morphettville on a Saturday.

“It’s a hobby,’’ Paul said.

“I’ve got a bit of a spread sheet going,’’ he said.

“We need the spread sheet, so I don’t confuse Paul too much,’’ Peta said.

“I refer to the horses by their stable names, Gytrash is Lewis and Bold Star is Noah, it can get confusing as Paul refers to them by their race names,’’ she said.

“We’re not expecting to make money out of it, when they pay for themselves it’s great and we’ve made so many good friends though racing,’’ Paul said.

The pair said being involved in a horse like Group 1 winner and 2020 SA Horse of the Year Gytrash had been an amazing ride.

“Going to the Everest last year was fantastic, the whole campaign was a great ride,’’ Paul said.

“Anytime any of the horses run in Melbourne we like to go over there and make a weekend of it, we’ve been fortunate that when we have gone over that we’ve had plenty of success at the same time,’’ he said.

“All I ever wanted was to win a Group 1, that was on my bucket list,’’ Peta said.

“Winning the Lightning Stakes was an amazing day, being in the winner’s lounge and then invited to go to Royal Ascot was something else, we’ve been very lucky,’’ she said.

It was the 2002 Bali Bombings that led Paul into horse ownership when the Sturt Football Club named a horse in honour of Josh Deegan and Bob Marshall who were killed in the tragedy.

“A mate asked me if I wanted to go in, I think there were 60 of us and it only had the one win,’’ Ninnis said.

“After that I took a share in a horse with Gordon Richards. It won it’s first race at Cheltenham and then it won its next start at Morphettville, and I thought 'how easy is this'",

“Before ownership I used to like the races, but I think I’d only ever been to the track a couple of times before that.

“When we don’t have a runner it’s nice to actually have a week off, but at the moment it doesn’t happen very often,’’ he said.

“When we do have a spare Saturday, we like to go for lunch somewhere, but we usually find ourselves watching the races anyway,’’ Peta said.

Richard Jolly said the Ninnis’ were a perfect example of modern ownership, where a percentage of ownership can still offer the complete racing experience.

“We met quite a few years ago at a function, they came into a horse, we’ve had a bit of luck and we are now good friends,’’ Jolly said.

“They are always keen to take a small share each year we go to the sales, that’s makes a trainers job a lot easier. Being able to take as little as 5 per cent has really made it a lot more affordable while having the same right and benefits, that’s the landscape of racing now.

“We’re lucky have a few clients who are always keen to take a share each year. This year I bought 20 yearlings and was lucky enough to have them all sold by August,’’ he said.

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