Playrio was born in the drought of 2010 at Caiwarra Station in NW Qld. We were looking for a colt to keep our “Rio” line going and we had Playrio and one other bay colt both from entirely different mare lines.
The old original Daleys Rio (Playrio’s grandsire) was a mixture of Thoroughbred, Stockhorse and Imp Quarter Horse. His dam, the Thoroughbred mare Joy had been bought by my Dad from a drover for a considerable amount when she was seen doing brilliant work cutting out bullocks on the flat on a property north of Julia Creek. Dads brother Ken Daley was managing Canobie at this time and the resident stallion there was by the Imported QH stallion, Jackeroo, so Joy was bred to him and the resulting brown colt was Rio. He had the agility of a stockhorse, the speed of a TB and the stocksense of a QH. At 15.3hh and with a beautiful nature, Dad won over 70 Open drafts on him, Mum 2 ACA Lady Rider Titles and us kids won Juniors on him. He picked up, bulldogged, jumped, hacked, barrel raced..he did the lot. You could pretty well say we were raised on Rio and his progeny earned him 3 ACA Sire Progeny Awards.
We had retained a black colt by Rio called Rio’s Legend who very early in his life broke his leg leaving us with very few progeny by him…Scenario, Remenisce, Levi, Special Request, Rio Grande and Playrio. So we had a decision to make on 2 colts as to which one to keep and even thought we really liked Rio Grande, Playrio was probably a little more practical – he had better bone and doing ability and he had a very smart, inquisitive but quiet nature and once we broke him in, he was so soft and he was like an old horse to ride in no time. Chasing cattle was natural to him, he was smooth and could walk…all old time values.
In the end though, it doesn’t matter how good a stallion is, it is how good their progeny are and that they better the mares they are bred to. I don’t think we really appreciated Playrio to the full extent or knew how good he was until we started handling, riding and drafting his foals.
We are extremely happy with our Playrio progeny. They have won The Canning Downs, The Triple Crown Aggregate, ACA Novice and Open Horse Titles and many other prestigious drafts in a relatively short time-frame and with a small number of outside mares to him each year but probably some of our proudest moments are seeing them safely and effortlessly carry our daughter Madison to Junior wins time and time again.
With the untimely early passing of his sire, we didn’t really plan the breeding of the colt as is so often done nowadays but we feel he is the best unplanned horse to ever happen for us! His progeny are stamped with his good traits and we breed everything we can to him while we still have him!