Racing folks rally to help embattled Kiwi horsewoman Kaye Sanders

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The thoroughbred industry is rallying to help Kaye Sanders, pictured at right with her daughter, Holly.
The thoroughbred industry is rallying to help Kaye Sanders, pictured at right with her daughter, Holly.  © NZ Thoroughbred Marketing

The thoroughbred breeding industry is stepping up with a charity auction and other assistance to help one of its own, lifelong North Canterbury horsewoman Kaye Sanders.

Kaye suffered a brain aneurysm on September 13. Following complications during surgery, she suffered a stroke the following day, requiring further surgery to alleviate swelling on the brain.

She required a three-week stay in intensive care and was then transferred to the Neurology ward at the Christchurch Hospital. Kaye is currently at Burwood Hospital where she is working hard on her rehabilitation journey to develop enough independence to return home.

The New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association and the Canterbury, Marlborough, Westland and Otago branch have organised an auction to raise funds for Kaye’s road to recovery, made possible with generous donations from right around New Zealand. The auction is live on gavelhouse.com and runs until 7pm, Monday November 1.

“Kaye has dedicated her life to horses and now the thoroughbred breeding industry she has poured her heart and soul into is rallying to support her in her time of need,” the NZTBA said.

Items on offer include a tonne of Dunstan feed, a service to Vanbrugh donated by Windsor Park Stud, a service to Coats Choice or Highly Recommended donated by Berkley Stud, Unborn Foal Insurance policy to the successful bidder on Vanbrugh and Coats Choice/Highly Recommended service nominations from NZB Insurance, a horseshoe pin with Melody Belle’s hair entwined in it from Equine Mementos and sport horse stallion services.

There is also a silent auction for items that include vouchers from Race Images and gavelhouse.com, equine industry goods and services and rare racing memorabilia. Both close on November 1 at 7pm.

Kaye’s daughter Holly, who has been living in Australia since 2018 and working as a civil engineer, is back home helping out, but her partner was turned away at the border and is yet to gain confirmation he can travel to New Zealand.

Kaye suffered a brain aneurysm on September 13. Following surgery, she suffered a stroke, requiring more surgery.
Kaye suffered a brain aneurysm on September 13. Following surgery, she suffered a stroke, requiring more surgery. © NZ Thoroughbred Marketing

“We’d just moved from Melbourne to Newcastle and a few weeks later mum had her aneurysm,” Holly said. “I was fortunate enough to get a spot in MIQ so I packed up my life to move back and take over the horses and help mum.

“Mum is on the recovery path but there have been other complications like infections that haven’t helped. She has had to just keep battling on.

“It’s called left-sided neglect. Basically, the brain doesn’t recognise the left side of her body.

“They don’t know her prognosis, they know it will be a long road but can’t say how long.”

Friends and neighbours have been helping care for the horses at Kaye’s Mansfield Park property in Loburn.

“It’s been amazing,” Holly said, describing the support as “overwhelming”.

“There has been so much support and without it, things would be so much harder. I could not be more thankful. It is so incredible what people will do.”

Debbie Kingsland, secretary of the Canterbury, Marlborough, Westland & Otago NZTBA branch said members would now focus on how to help Kaye in the long term.

“She is so passionate about her horses, just loves them and looks after them like they are her own babies.

“For her to have this horrid thing happen is going to be life-changing for her.

“You know Kaye would be the first person to help you if you needed it so it was an easy decision, everyone just rallied around.”

» A fundraising page for Kaye has also been set up, to help cover costs to help keep her farm running while she is unable to work.

New Zealand Thoroughbred Marketing
Additional reporting: Amie Best, NZTBA

Items up for auction on gavelhouse.com to raise funds for Kaye include:

  • A ton of Dunstan Breed And Grow
  • Service to Vanbrugh, donated by Windsor Park Stud
  • Service to Coats Choice or Highly Recommended, donated by Berkley Stud
  • A service to Twin Blues Golden Legacy
  • A service to Solitaire HL
  • A horseshoe pin with Melody Belle’s hair entwined in it from Equine Mementos, two Te Akau Racing caps and a framed picture of Melody Belle from Trish Dunnell
  • NRM & McMillan Equine feeds package
  • A $500 transport voucher from NZ Horse Transport

In addition to the above, the below are also available via a silent auction. Email offers to Deb Kingsland by 7pm Monday, November 1 – debkingsland@yahoo.co.nz

  • A Featured gavelhouse.com listing valued at $400 + GST
  • Race Images gift voucher to the value $245. Covers a fully framed & delivered race win photo for any winner since 2006 size 450 x 400mm
  • Framed picture of Secretariat.
  • Sir Tristram book signed by Sir Patrick Hogan.
  • Two $150 SOHO Wine packages
  • 15 reusable facemasks with logo from JD – thinking outside the square valued at $360
  • NZTBA Membership and Stallion Register book valued at $195
  • Cover Queen cover package valued at $500
  • $200 Majestic Horse Transport voucher
  • Two Harriet covers valued at $350
  • $200 Prezzie Card donated by Fulton Hogan
  • $100 Farmlands voucher
  • $150 Betavet voucher
  • A two baleage voucher from Ivy Farm valued at $200
  • BONAFIDE® valued at $430
  • POSEIDON Product Package valued at $344 kindly donated by Poseidon Equine. 

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