Perfect 10! Up Hill Jill Whelps To Fernando Bale

CHAMPION race bitch Up Hill Jill has whelped a litter of 10 pups to Fernando Bale.

Adam Dobbin

13 May 2019

CHAMPION race bitch Up Hill Jill has whelped a litter of 10 pups to Fernando Bale.

“She’s had six boys and four girls and no surprise she’s been a fantastic mum,” beamed Dave Geall on Tuesday morning.

*********************************************************************

WHEN it comes to closely kept secrets, few have been kept more guarded than this one was.

But in the aftermath of champion race bitch Up Hill Jill whelping a litter of 10 pups to the great Fernando Bale, her proud owner/trainer and breeder Dave Geall explains just how close his 38 race winner came to contesting this year’s Group 1 Golden Easter Egg Series at Wentworth Park.

“Pretty close, she was trialling the house down, but we kept it all very quiet,” said Geall of Up Hill Jill, a finalist in the 2017 Golden Easter Egg, before landing the Easter Saturday feature in 2018 with a pulsating triumph over Striker Light.

“We retired her after the Melbourne Cup last year but she hadn’t come on season and was jumping out of her skin so we put her back into work on the quiet. She was never one for trialling outstanding by herself but she was going unbelievable. A crack at a third Easter Egg was becoming a real possibility.”

With her list of feature race wins including victories in the 2017 Topgun and 2018 Golden Easter Egg, Up Hill Jill retired with 38 race wins and prizemoney of $882,000.

“We got to about three weeks out from the Easter Egg starting and she came on season would you believe,” reflected Geall.

“It was probably the return to the tracks and the excitement that brought her on as it turned out – she just loved to race, she had white line fever if ever I’ve seen it. I was happy with her coming on season but I must say, with the way she was going, it would have been great to see her return to the track for the Egg.”

And whilst Geall says there was an air of disappointment given how close she was to a surprise race track return, no one was more upset than Jill herself.

“I know this might sound strange to some people but when I started making the trip to Sydney for the Easter Egg with Miss Splendamiro I could tell Jill knew exactly where I was going – and didn’t she have the shits with me,” said Geall.

“Jill and I had done that same trip so many times – she knew that I’d do the dogs early and get home at a certain time of a Sunday. When I got home those three weeks she wouldn’t come near me. She was nice and dirty with me.”

During the course of Sunday night, Up Hill Jill whelped 10 pups to Fernando Bale. Six boys and four girls. All healthy. Mum doing well.

“I’m excited to think what they might be in a couple of years’ time,” says Geall.

“To think both mum and dad could run 5.40 early at Wentworth Park and have that ability to turn it on when it mattered most, that’s what I’m looking forward to with these pups.

“Like everything she does Jill is handling the early stages of motherhood with ease. Her mum Where’s Demonica was much the same. It’s a very exciting time!”