Wheels In Motion For Hard Style Rico At Stud

LUCKIE Karabitsakos took days to be able to wipe the smile off his face recently and it all happened through an hour and a half phone call.

David Brasch

2 March 2021

LUCKIE Karabitsakos took days to be able to wipe the smile off his face recently and it all happened through an hour and a half phone call.

That call came from Paul Wheeler who was in search of semen from Luckie’s superstar sprinter Hard Style Rico (Bella Infrared-Bella Rico by Stagger).

Rico, of course, is the Group 1 Melbourne Cup winner and Sandown (28.91) and Shepparton (24.77) track record breaker and the apple of Luckie’s eye.

“Paul rang to buy three straws to Rico and we spoke on the phone for an hour and a half,” said Luckie.

“It was amazing what Paul taught me and shared with me in that time.

“And he is planning on buying more straws to Rico in the very near future.”

Hard Style Rico retired to stud immediately after his Melbourne Cup victory which came in track record time at Sandown and Luckie admits retirement was the least of his thoughts at that moment.

“But a lot of people had been chasing straws for him,” he said.

“No, I didn’t expect to retire the dog and to be honest I have felt Rico was only just hitting his straps. I think he could have got even better than he was at Melbourne Cup time.”

But Luckie is having no second thoughts.

“It took a while to get everything underway for his stud career but in his first full month at stud, in January, he served 12 bitches,” he said. 

“That was a great result for a young, unproven stud dog just off the track.

“And, the demand has continued. In fact, we are getting constant inquiries from around the country for him.”

Recent collections and storage now gives Luckie and his dog plenty of semen available to breeders.

“And the number of quality bitches coming to him, including Manila Knight’s mother Angie Rocks, is something else,” said Luckie.

“Rico certainly has settled into his new job.”

Rico has become a Facebook star.

“We’ve put a video up on his Facebook page and it shows just what a beautiful dog he is,” said Luckie.

Luckie is still “chuffed” that the Wheeler family has chased semen for his superstar.

“To get that phone call from Paul was a real plus for this dog,” said Luckie.

“He will get every chance to succeed with the sort of bitches the Wheeler family will use to him.”