Published by Heather Pascoe, May 12, 2022.
How good? Seriously, how good? That’s what we say every time we look at this wonderful headshot because it reminds us of the old saying: every great stallion only exists on earth because they had a great mother.
You can see in one glance that Nonda Southern Cross – Denzel is the masculine reflection of his dam.
In other words, he is the image of his mother. Yes, he is black and his mother is chestnut – but he has his mother’s head, his mother’s attitude – and his mother’s own brilliant, indefinable energy.
In one glance you can see that he is his mother’s son, a chip off the old block, the apple that didn’t fall too far from the maternal tree.
His dam was chestnut like her sire Doc’s Freckles Oak – but her own dam was black, and her dam was black as well.
While his sire Acres Destiny was black, we believe that Denzel strongly carries all the same qualities of his black grand-dam Nonda Night Bird and his near-black great-grand-dam Nonda Cuddles.
He has their same Nonda station toughness, their same thoroughbred speed, their same gritty defiance to control their cattle, no matter how tough the situation. He also has the same love and commitment to the humans they belonged to.
That’s the power of a dominant family – and that’s the reason we believe we know who he has thrown to genetically right from the day he was born.
Nonda Happy Ever After was a true-stamped sorrel daughter of her sire, the legendary Docs Freckles Oak, who threw so strongly to his dam-sire, the sorrel Jewel’s Leo Bars, who looked so much like his own sire, the legendary Lightning Bars, a sorrel son of the American thoroughbred and AQHA breed-shaper Three Bars.
We will soon show you some more great photos of Nonda Happy Ever After, and you will be able to see why we regarded her as probably the most beautiful looking mare we have ever bred. She was sorrel, she was feminine, and she was flawless.
Sadly, she was never campaigned for a very simple reason. Heather Pascoe already had her niece Nonda Let’s Talk Later in cutting training for the NCHA Futurity and the NCHA Derby.
N. Let’s Talk Later (Doc’s Freckles Oak) was a daughter of Nonda Sweet Dreams (Boab) who was a bay half-sister to Nonda Happy Ever After.
Heather was working as a journalist for The Australian in Sydney, she was paying off a house – and she also had the rest of her good mares on permanent adjistment in the South trying to hold onto her Nonda bloodlines.
Happy Ever After spent time on the road with Heather’s good friend Terry Hall who described her as “a proper cattle horse”.
As the world knows only too well, Terry is a very hard marker and a man of few words, so you can probably read plenty from that one brief sentence.
Nonda Let’s Talk Later made the Final of the NCHA Futurity, the Final of the NCHA Derby, ran second in the Novice at the NCHA National Finals (by one point) and later went on to win the Warwick Gold Cup for Terry Hall.
It was an achievement that has never been matched before or after by any horse in Australia – to scale the heights of not one but of two major industries.
So, here’s the question that everybody wants to know. Was Nonda Happy Ever After an even better mare than her niece Nonda Let’s Talk Later?
Did Heather Pascoe send the wrong mare to be campaigned? What could Nonda Happy Ever After have done if she had been sent camp drafting?
Twenty-seven years down the track, the truth is that we will never know.
The only thing we can be sure of is this: that Nonda Southern Cross – Denzel is doing his Mumma proud, and her name will continue to live on through her descendants.
Exactly the way it should be.