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Notable South Australians/William Gerrard

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William Gerrard,

THE pioneer breeder of blood stock in South Australia. He owned 6,000 acres of freehold land at Rapid Bay, and in 1861 turned his attention to the breeding of thoroughbred horses, an industry which till then had not been undertaken here, except on a small scale. Having a thorough knowledge of blood stock, and with means to purchase the animals he considered best suited for the purpose of a first-class stud farm, it is not to be wondered at that Mr. Gerrard's venture proved successful. The names of some of his horses are doubtless familiar to the reader, especially as they have come so prominently before the public at race time,—South Australian, Union Jack, Ace of Clubs, King of the Ring, Ace of Trumps, The Ace, Argus Scandal, Irish King, Southern Cross, Talk-o'-the-Hill, Tregeagle, and Pride of the Hills, which last magnificent steed won for South Australia her first champion race. Mr. Gerrard disposed of the Rapid Bay stud in 1880; fifty-eight lots were offered, and the sum realised was £11,360. From that time until his death he confined his attention to sheep, but always had a hankering after the more noble animal, and would probably, had he lived, have again returned to his old pursuits. He died at Glenelg, July 30th, 1884, aged 45 years.