The Fijian word Malua means "wait a while", but Troy Corstensisn’t one to wait and watch the world go by and neither did Malua the horse whom the stable is named after.
Leon and Troy Corsten’s owned Malua Racing runs like clockwork with prominent multiple Group One-winning racehorse trainer Leon Corsten training horses chosen by his son based on years of experience.
Leon worked with Bart Cummings for 25 years before he decided to part ways in 1994.
His most cherished Group 1 victories though have been those won in partnership with Troy coming with Awesome Rock and Montoya’s Secret.
Over the 2021 yearling sales season, Troy purchased 26 yearlings for over A$3 million. Troy chats with The Impact during a busy week which included a rash of interviews for the racing manager and funerals about the thinking and analysis behind his purchases, his plans for the new horses and his aspirations for the stable.
Q: You spent over A$3 million during this yearling sales season. Is this a typical spend and will all the horses go into syndication?
A: Yes probably eighty percent will go into syndication. Usually, we don’t go up this high. But we have had a good year and the demand has been quite strong. And I’ve felt that there has been some really good buying, so I wanted to jump on when the value was there.
Q: What is your typical buying process? Do you have a bloodstock agent that you work with? Do you evaluate once the sales catalog comes out? What what's your selection process?
A: I look at every horse at every sale that I go to. I don’t shortlist. I look at every horse on its merits. This year I did about five hundred of the Magic Millions’ horses on the farm. Other than that every horse I inspected was at the sale. It a process that I’ve been doing for a very long time and it works well for me.
I also have a guy that helps me with pedigrees. I have another person who helps me with heart scans and of course, we have a vet to do the inspections.
Q: You bought 26 horses this year. Is this the final number or will you be looking at the other winter sales and/or the Ready-To-Race sales later in the year?
A: This is the bulk of our buying. We will buy a Ready-To-Race horse if someone puts in an order for one. I will go to see horses at the winter sales but I will only buy if something special catches my eye.
Q: You paid substantially more for a Zoustar X Fast Fleet filly. What was special about her?
A: She is a half-sister to Santa Ana Lane, a horse I bought originally together with Bahen bloodstock. I trained him at the start and then eventually he moved over to Anthony Freedman.
Q: And what, what are your plans for her?
A: I treat them all the same. If gets to the 2Yo races that will really be great. But for me, it's important that we are patient with her. I will make sure we let her develop and really grow. We will strengthen up to make sure that we can get the best out of her.
Q: What are your plans for the Zoustar (AUS) X Villa Bled (AUS) filly and the Zoustar (AUS) X Cavalry Rose (AUS) filly?
A: The Villa Bled filly is a beautiful filly that was purchased outright for our client Shane Morrissey while the Cavalry Rose was my favourite filly in the Magic Millions sale. She is fully syndicated.
Q: They will go down to the Kolora Lodge in Queensland for the winter. And they will come back to me in Melbourne after the winter is finished. Q: What are the size of horses that will be in training with you after the winter is over?
A: We currently have 80 horses in training. We have 54 yearlings to come in which include the horses we’ve bought, the ones we’ve bred and those that are given to us for training.
Q: What does the name Malua mean?
A: Malua was a racehorse in 1800. He was the most versatile Australian Thoroughbred racehorse in history. Malua won over distances ranging from 5 ¹⁄₂ furlongs to 3 ¹⁄₄ miles. He was just an absolute freak of an animal and he inspired me quite a bit.
Q: And finally, what do you feel about taking your horses to race internationally, once this situation improves of course?
A: The horse has to be able to compete at that level. And if he (or she) can then we would love to take him racing internationally. But the strategy for our stable is to focus on city winners.