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Makybe Diva a famous horse which is both Australian and Croatian brand owned by Tony Santic
By Nenad N. Bach and Darko Žubrinić | Published  03/5/2016 | Sports , Entertainment , Education | Unrated
Makybe Diva the most famous horse in the History of Mankind

The jockey of Makybe Diva is easily recognizable by the jersey and the cap deocrated with elements of the Croatian Coat of Arms that everybody knows.

Mr Tony Santic, tuna farmer and the owner of Makyba Dive

Mr Tony Santic (tuna farmer), Australian Croat born on the beautiful Croatian island of Lastovo, is the owner of a famous mare Makybe Diva. This strange name is an acronym, derived from the names of five ladies employed at Mr Santic: Maureen, Kylie, Belinda, Diane and Vanessa. In 2005 Makybe Diva became the first horse in Australasian racing history to claim three Melbourne Cups and a Cox Plate.

Makybe Diva and Glen Boss with a Croatian cap
Photo by Sebastian Costanzo

The Boss with Croatian Coat of Arms and Makybe Diva
Photo by Wayne Taylor

Celebrating the victory

The winning jersey winning the hearts...

...and media

Mr. Tony Santic is in the middle, Glen Boss on the right (Makybe Diva missing),
with Croatian Coat of Arms on his jersey

Goooooooogling with Makybe Diva and with a Croatian hat ...

Horses in Croatian Art

Makybe Diva on Australian stamps: From Champion to Legend

Monument in honor of Makybe Diva in Australia

Tony Santic (owner of Makybe Diva) and Glenn Boss (jockey)

Tony Santic, owner of Makybe Diva, decorated with national symbols of Australia and Croatia


Tony Santic, a pioneer in Australia’s Tuna industry, established Tony’s Tuna International Pty Ltd in 1994. A tuna fisherman since 1970 Tony started ranching tuna in 1992. Currently the second largest Southern Bluefin Tuna (Thunnus Maccoyii and Minami Maguro) ranch in Australia, Tony’s Tuna International is also the only operator with the ability to control the entire process; that is ranching, feeding, catching, processing and freezing its product without external contractors. This control enables us to achieve our mission of delivering a consistent, high quality, sashimi grade product all year round.


Thousands of miles from any large populated areas, the Southern Ocean is reported to be one of the cleanest in the world. Port Lincoln was chosen because of its excellent waters, closeness to fishing grounds, protection from extreme weather, and availability of fresh local sardines (pilchards) – the preferred feed of Southern Bluefin Tuna.


The Southern Bluefin Tuna are caught between December and March each year whilst on their migratory path from the Java Sea. By the time the fish arrive at our fishing grounds they have swum over 3,000 kilometers, which means Tony’s Tuna International are catching the healthiest specimens. Rounded up by purse seine method, the fish are towed back to approved farming sites off Port Lincoln in specially designed towing pontoons.

Back at the ranch the tuna are fed every day a diet of various fish species including mackerel, red bait, and locally caught sardines. The locally caught sardines are caught during the night and transferred to feeding bins so that they can be fed fresh directly to the tuna the next morning. The freshness and high protein levels in this fish are particularly good for the tuna's growth and condition.

All bait must meet the strict Quarantine Health and Sanitary requirements imposed by Australian Government and Industry. Tony’s Tuna International regularly have bait independently tested to ensure it meets all regulatory requirements and our own specifications.


Mr Tony Santic

Lee Freedman (trainer), Tony Santic (owner of Makybe Diva) and Steven King (jockey), 2005

Daugther of Makybe Diva. Picture: Mark Evans.

Makybe Diva’s daughter for sale on opening day of Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sales

February 20, 2016


Glen Boss smiles as he Makybe Diva claim the lead in the 2005 BMW Stakes at Rosehill.

A DAUGHTER of three-time Melbourne Cup-winning champion Makybe Diva and exciting first-season sire All Too Hard — a half-brother to the peerless Black Caviar — will be one of the most anticipated lots in next Sunday’s opening day of the Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sales.

It is the first yearling out of the Diva to be sold in Victoria and will form part of the Blue Riband Session, which focuses on horses bred to excel at three-years-old and older over distances of 1600m and further.

The blue blood filly is likely to be out of reach financially for the winner of the Herald Sun Inglis Win A Share In A Racehorse competition, which gives one lucky reader the chance to win a 10 per cent share in a horse purchased at the sales to the value of $100,000, with two years of training and insurance also included.

The Diva filly is expected to be sold for in excess of $200,000, but will add plenty of attraction to the sales, which run over four days, beginning next Sunday.

“To have a yearling by a champion three-year-old and out of Makybe Diva is exciting,” Inglis Victorian bloodstock manager Simon Vivian said.

Milburn Creek’s Scott Holcombe has prepared the yearling for sale on behalf of Tony Santic, and he says she resembles her famous mother in many regards.

“She is very much in the mould of her mother,” Holcombe said.

“There is always interest when you take one of Makybe Diva’s progeny to the sales, and there will be with this one as it is her first to be sold in her old home town of Melbourne.”

Maybe Diva, a winner of more than $14 million, has been underwhelming so far in her career in the breeding barn, but Holcombe is confident that can change in time.

“With Makybe Diva being so good, she is going to have to do it at some stage,” he said.

Herald Sun readers have until just before midnight this Wednesday to get their entries into the Win A Share in a Racehorse competition.

The horse will be selected and trained by outstanding young horseman Ciaron Maher, who has won the past two VRC Oaks classics with Jameka and Set Square.

“We are delighted that Ciaron’s name was drawn out as trainer,” Vivian said. “He has been a strong supporter of the sales, it’s important to get these young, aggressive and progressive trainers.

“We’ve had a great run with the competition and Ciaron gives us a chance to keep that going.

“All of the sales in the southern hemisphere have been strong this year and it is fair to say that we will go into the Melbourne Premier sales with a degree of confidence.

“We are very comfortable with the product we have got and the great thing about it is the quality we have. I think we have a few more stars to shine in 2016.”


Formated for CROWN by Darko Žubrinić
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