Mette Campbell-Andenaes

Nancy Sexton, 1 Jan 2010
Fur Will Fly & Forest Fire Sand Vixen Sand Vixen as foal at Andbell

Mette Campbell-Andenaes was advised to sell Forest Fire alongside her Sakhee foal in 2004.

Her decision to retain the multiple-winning daughter of Never So Bold struck gold this season, however, when Presvis, the Sakhee gelding in question, landed the Group 1 QE II Cup at Sha Tin in April. As a result, Forest Fire is now the jewel in Campbell-Andenaes’ 15-strong broodmare band, the majority of which are based at her Andbell Stud in East Sussex.
 
Remarkably for a small operation, that number also includes Fur Will Fly, whose daughter Sand Vixen captured the Group 2 Flying Childers’ Stakes and Listed Rose Bowl Stakes this season. Although former model Campbell-Andenaes has been involved with horses for most of her life – she rode in the first of approximately 20 races in her native Norway at the age of 13 – it wasn’t until 1992 that Andbell officially became a stud. Today it boasts facilities such as a walker, indoor school, treadmill and 70 acres of paddocks, although the stud’s interests at auction are handled by Ted Voute and Caroline Green’s Templeton Stud. “I had bought a few horses cheaply in Norway with success but as my daughter Monica was showjumping in Britain, I decided to have horses over here and bought Andbell,” says Campbell-Andenaes of her entry into the industry. “I knew Con Horgan, as I used to ride out for Ryan Price when Con was his assistant, so I sent some horses to him, with the initial plan being that I would breed from the fillies when they retired.” She adds: “I used stallions which I had admired as racehorses. I didn’t know much about bloodlines but because I’ve been with horses all my life, I understood conformation. I’ve learnt as I’ve gone along.”

One of Campbell-Andenaes’ first purchases was a mare named Bumpkin, who was sent to Petong following two visits to Midyan. The resulting produce was Fur Will Fly, who was sold for 24,000gns as a yearling before re-entering the Andbell fold as a broodmare prospect. 12 years on and she is the dam of Sand Vixen, a 30,000gns yearling purchase by Emma O’Gorman, as well as Listed winner So Will I. Fur Will Fly is booked for a return visit to Dubawi, while Sakhee’s Secret is the selected mate for Forest Fire. “I bred and raced Forest Fire and I knew that what she might lack in family, she made up for in guts and soundness,” she recalls. “I was advised to sell her but leased her instead. I sold Presvis as a foal for 15,000gns, which was the covering fee. Luca told me when he was a two-year-old that he thought he had something, but the horse was always getting into trouble, which was one of the reasons why he didn’t race until he was four.”

Campbell-Andenaes also owns a half-share in dual 2,000 Guineas winner Cockney Rebel, whose first foals are “very correct, strong and good-walking,” as well as six horses in training. They include the exciting hurdler Pepe Simo and an unraced coloured twoyear- old named That’s Showbiz, who is a son of her own I Was Framed, the only coloured Thoroughbred stallion in Britain. The son of Racey Remarque stands at Rectory Farm Stud and has been well-supported by Campbell-Andenaes, making her equine assets as diverse as they are successful.

 

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