20211229 - Sporting Post Sprint Ver 1.2 Single Pages

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Cover Image Vodacom Durban July winning owner Ashwin Reynolds & his wife Rene - image courtesy of Candiese Lenferna

4 Michelle Rix, Ashwin Reynolds and family watching Kommetdieding enjoying a roll at Milnerton

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While Ashwin Reynolds and Rachel Venniker came into horseracing from two very different worlds, the duo provided thrills and entertainment, and scripted their unique individual chapters in the history book of South African horseracing in 2021. In a popularity poll run by the Sporting Post, that included ten nominations by our readers, only 0,32% separated Vodacom Durban July winning owner Ashwin from South Africa’s newest groundbreaking female rider, Rachel. Ashwin Reynolds achieved an SP reader vote of 26.03% versus Rachel Venniker’s 25.71% at close of the poll at noon on Tuesday. While the current season holds great new Gr1 hopes for L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate and WSB Cape Town Met entry Kommetdieding, it was the Vodacom Durban July victory by the Michelle Rix and Harold Crawford -trained son of Elusive Fort that put Mr Reynolds on the racing map. The man who lives a minute away from Kenilworth racecourse and grew up in Grassy Park on the Cape Flats said that he was thrilled that the Cape Flats community had gotten behind the people’s horse the way they had.

Ashwin watched Africa’s greatest horserace from home together with his wife Rene and sons Brandon and Aiden and said the neighbours must have believed ‘a Tsunami’ had hit. The neighbours asked politely the next day whether something had happened as they were not aware of his association with racehorses. Hailing from a dynasty of KZN showjumping champions headed by her Dad Brett, Rachel Venniker has been riding since the age of 4, competing in the show arena, and riding work on racehorses since the age of 14. Having injected a whole new attitude in SA racing to the way lady riders are viewed, Rachel has made great strides in her short time in the professional saddle and currently heads the SA National Apprentice Champion log, with a more than 100% lead over hear nearest rival. The Dacha-sponsored Venniker recently also joined the ranks of the greatest female riders to have graced the SA turf when her first year winner statistics put her in the Genevieve Michel and Jessica Goslett league. We thank our readers for participating with such enthusiasm, and doff our cap to all the nominees. The rest of the nominees, with their percentage vote shown are: 6

The Punter 12.54% Next to the owner, the most important person in racing. But does the game treat him right? Awful Tote service and endless technical glitches, information chaos around Tellytrack, inconsistencies with Stiping decisions, and a general apathy from the hierarchy, make the ideal of the boosting of tote turnover a distant pipe dream. We salute the punter for mostly coming back every day. Lyle Hewitson 10.79% A treble SA Champion jockey, Lyle Hewitson rode the first winner of his second Hong Kong campaign on Sunday 5 December and just a week later found himself in hospital after a dreadful accident on Longines International Races day at Sha Tin. The 23 year old is recovering well and remains a firm public favourite. Justin Snaith 7.14% Newly crowned SA Champion trainer Justin Snaith is being given plenty to think about by last season’s runner-up Paul Peter, who is a marginal leader on the national log as the year winds down. After saddling Double Superlative to win the Cape Guineas a fortnight ago, Justin will have a few more Gr1 aces up his sleeve before the end of the local season in February.

Alistair Cohen 5.71% Our proudly newest international export, Dubai racecaller Alistair Cohen has earned wide respect for the seamless manner that he has transcended from calling the likes of Kommetdieding and Bevoeterd here, to Reem Baynounah, Af Fakhama and Qalb Almutawa in his new home, where he has adjusted to a whole new world in a matter of weeks. Brandon Bailey 4.76% South Africa’s youngest racecaller, the Boy from Brackendowns goes by the interesting nickname ‘Chopman’. No slouch in the commentary box, and something of a nice guy, Bailey probably earned his nomination here for his pursuits when calling Mauritius racing from a

makeshift ‘hokkie’ at the local Gauteng tracks. Urban legend or not, he receives full marks for passion and dedication to the game. Tony Rivalland 3.97% A Summerveld racehorse trainer and founding member and chairman of SANTA, Tony Rivalland is on record that the best advice he ever received was ‘Never Say Die’ and to keep yourself in the best company and your horses in the worst. It could be argued that he has lived up to that maxim and was recently lauded by his colleagues for his unwavering drive and determination, consultative prowess, and astounding work ethic for facilitating sensitive negotiations – not unlike a World Peace summit – with the National Horseracing Authority.

Candiese Lenferna

7 Rachel Venniker – changed the way some view female jocks

Fundi Sithebe 1.75% The first CEO of 4Racing, Fundi Sithebe spoke to the Sporting Post after a hectic first month in the cockpit of the 4Racing superjet. Read her story on page 9. Mike de Kock 1.59% The multiple SA Champion trainer is always a newsmaker, his outspoken and forthright demeanour making him a favourite with the media and the racing public. MDK put South African racing on the world map with his exploits in Dubai and elsewhere, and will likely be seen participating again in the 2022 Dubai World Cup Carnival.


4Racing CEO Fundi Sithebe – aiming for the stars

Flying aeroplanes is not for the faint of heart. But neither is running a racing operator in the current climate. And it’s been a mildly turbulent start for Fundi Sithebe, the first Chief Executive Officer of 4Racing. A nominee in the Sporting Post Racing Person Of The Year awards, Miss Sithebe, a qualified pilot from Diepkloof, Soweto, has some stormy weather ahead and it looks like a flight that is going to require deviations and changes of course along the way. The reality of aeroplanes is that they have passengers and baggage. Captain Sithebe may want to check her manifest after a December of tote mini disasters threatened to ground the brand new jet. The Wolverhampton card on Monday was the latest botch in a month they'd rather forget. A large part of Fundi's responsibilities will be to ensure a successful turnaround, stabilising and the growth and sustainability of the horse racing business whilst managing the day-today operations, transformation and modernisation of the various business units. Fundi was previously the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Airports Company South

Africa (ACSA), in the period between December 2017 and April 2021.

several organisational strategic projects across the African continent.

Her area of responsibility at ACSA included directing, planning, and leading the company’s overall business operations (namely overall airports management, infrastructure asset management, technical services and solutions, enterprise security and information technology), ensuring that the business operations were set to achieve the company’s set performance commitments.

She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Midrand University, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management (Business Administration) from Wits Business School. Her passion in the aviation industry was sparked in 2003, when she obtained her Private Pilot’s License (PPL).

She was responsible for the integration and seamless operations across the network of 9 airports. She also assumed the responsibility for the day-today overall airport operations. In addition, she led the Commercial Division, which is mainly responsible for nonaeronautical revenue. As an “Old Boy” of Hilton College - she completed her A-Level studies at Hilton College as one of its few female students at the time in 1996 - Fundi is currently serving on the Board of the Hiltonian Society, an NPC responsible for oversight on the running of Hilton College, appointed in February 2019. She started her career as a management consultant, focussing in the areas of strategy and operations in


One of her biggest passions is the inclusivity and growth of female representation in the industries she serves in. She was previously a member of a few non-profit initiatives within the aviation industry (namely, Southern African Women in Aviation and Aerospace (SAWIA), Women in Aviation (W&A) as well as chairperson of Akani Aviation Leadership Initiative South Africa) that aimed to ensure a larger and a sustainable base of females in the aviation industry, and ensuring greater gender representation in the Horse Racing industry is an important objective for her.

The Sporting Post Sprint is interactive. Click on the live links throughout and enjoy the read!

SUGGESTIONS? Please email editor@sportingpost.co.za

Ten Quick Questions For Fundi What’s your one top tip for doing a deal?

to live your life based on someone else’s standards.

Nothing beats human connection, so networking is very important and counts for the greater part of clinching the deal.

If you could fix only one thing in SA, what would it be?

What was your first job? Business analyst for Deloitte Consulting. How much was your first pay cheque, and how did you spend it? My first pay cheque was R7 500. I recall being overexcited and spending it all on anything and everything. What is the one thing you wish somebody had told you when you were starting out? I wish someone had told me to invest, invest, invest. I also wish someone had told me to invest in horse racing then. What is the hardest life lesson you’ve learnt? You do not have to have immediate gain or go into debt to have a particular lifestyle. You do not need

I would fix the culture of mediocrity and complacency. We’ve reached a stage in the country where we accept what we are given. Similarly, in many instances we are satisfied with doing the bare minimum. It’s important that we all strive for the highest of standards, no matter how small the task at hand. What’s the most interesting thing about you that people don’t know? I qualified as a private pilot many years ago. I juggled my lessons with my job at Deloitte and managed to obtain my licence at the age of 24. If you were President Cyril Ramaphosa, what would you change, or do, tomorrow? If I were the president of SA, I would focus more on the advancement of black professionals. We are economically significant but ideologically marginalised.


What’s the worst investment mistake you’ve made? I trusted a person who presented what seemed like a lucrative investment in an energy-related project. I "invested" money in it without doing the due diligence. Needless to say, the deal did not come through. What’s the best investment you’ve ever made, and how much of it was due to luck? Two properties I fully own, as well as co-ownership in a group of properties. I’ve also recently started to buy shares through EasyEquities. My most recent, exciting investment is having fractional ownership in three horses. It also allows me to play a little when I go to the races. The best way for a novice like myself to enjoy the journey of ownership is through partnerships. I’ve partnered with some of the best trainers in SA: Mike de Kock and Sean Tarry. Questions & answers courtesy of www. businesslive.co.za


JC Photos

‘No matter what lies in store for either War Of Athena or Malmoos, theirs was a rare achievement, one which is unlikely to be repeated any time soon’

Malmoos cruises in under Luke Ferraris to win the SA Triple Crown


The 2021 racing year will be remembered by many for an historical first, that of threeyear-olds Malmoos and War Of Athena stepping into the history books as the newlycrowned Triple Crown and Triple Tiara winners, a feat never achieved before in a single season. Triple Tiara winner War Of Athena has illuminated this wonderful sport like few others. She first caught the eye as a juvenile when

beaten a neck by champion Anything Goes in the Gr1 Thekwini Stakes. Building on that promising start, she would take owners Roy and Rose Waterman-Wentzel on an exhilarating journey during a stellar three-year-old campaign. The diminutive daughter of Cape Guineas winner Act Of War prepped for the Triple Tiara with a defeat of Gr1 winner Queen Supreme in the Gr2 Ipi Tombe Challenge


before beating old rival Anything Goes in the Gr3 Three Troikas Stakes.

The first leg of the Triple Tiara, the Gr2 Gauteng Fillies Guineas, featured the anticipated rematch between the two three-year-olds, yet War Of Athena again proved her superiority, scoring by the best part of two lengths. It was more of the same in the Gr1 Wilgerbosdrift SA Fillies Classic, where she

struck the front 300m out and cruised to another dominant success. As expected, Paul Matchett's charge clearly proved a cut above her overmatched rivals in the final leg, the Gr2 Wilgerbosdrift SA Oaks. Relaxed early on, she made rapid progress from off the pace and having claimed the advantage, went on to score with authority to join champions Igugu, Cherry On The Top and Summer Pudding as the fourth Triple Tiara winner. Dubbed the ‘Iron Lady’ of South African racing, War Of Athena returned two months later to score a scintillating

victory in the Gr1 Woolavington 2000 at Hollywoodbets Greyville. That was her seventh success of the season and second at the elite level. Having dominated her division, it came as no surprise that she was named the Champion Three-Year-Old Filly. Her owners have reputedly refused sizeable offers for their star asset, who was snapped up for a trifling R30 000 as a breeze up from breeders Summerhill Stud and has to date accumulated more than R1,9-million in career earnings. In contrast, War Of Athena's price tag pales in comparison to that of the late Sheikh Hamdan's Triple Crown winner

Malmoos, who cost R4,4 million as a National Sales yearling. The Varsfontein-bred colt impressed from the moment he stepped onto the racetrack and by the time he lined up for the Gr1 Cape Guineas, counted both the Gr3 Graham Beck and Gr2 Concorde Stakes amongst an unbeaten four-win streak. Sent off a warm favourite, he lost that unblemished record by finishing ninth, four lengths off the winner Russian Rock. However, he firmly put that disappointment behind him with a game victory in the Gr2 Gauteng Guineas and kept his Triple Crown dreams alive JC Photos

13 Muzi Yeni and War Of Athena in typical pose


when he forged away in the straight to land the second leg, the Gr1 SA Classic, by two lengths. Trainer Mike de Kock had always maintained that the son of Captain Al would improve with each leg of the Triple Crown, and so it proved. Malmoos made it look super easy with a dominant romp in the final leg, the Gr1 SA Derby, where he ran away from his rivals to score by an imperious five lengths. Sadly, that was to be the colt's last visit to the winner's enclosure. Rested following his fifth place in the Gr1 Premier's' Champions Challenge in May, Malmoos resurfaced five months later and has yet to show

his earlier brilliance in three disappointing starts. Barring the 'unkindest cut' of gelding, we may well have seen the last of this handsome individual. As a well-bred Triple Crown winner and likely to be the last Gr1 winning colt sired by Captain Al, he rates a valuable stallion prospect. War Of Athena meanwhile continues on her winning ways and has captured two of three starts this season, the most recent of which a gutsy win over the Turffontein mile. Blessed with the heart of lion, she looks set to make her presence felt wherever she goes. No matter what lies in store for either War Of Athena or


Malmoos, theirs was a rare achievement, one which is unlikely to be repeated any time soon.

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Juddmonte Farms

The magnificent Frankel: Galileo ex Kind (Danehill)


The thoroughbred industry lost its greatest stallion this past year, with the passing of Galileo in July. The greatest sire son of the legendary Sadler's Wells, Galileo's death at the age of 23 ended a notable era in the world of bloodstock. Perhaps fittingly, however, it was Galileo's unbeaten son Frankel who dominated at the top level in 2021. The Champion Sire of GB for 2021, Frankel (who is set to stand for a fee of 200 000 pounds in 2022), had an exceptional year - even by his own tremendous standards.

When Frankel's unbeaten two-year-old daughter Inspiral won the 8 October Gr1 bet365 Fillies' Mile, she became her sire's 20th individual G1 winner (Inspiral is also the second daughter of Frankel to win the Fillies' Mile with the Frankel sired Quadrilateral having won the Fillies' Mile back in 2019). His progeny shown over a range of trips this year, from daughters Inspiral, Snow Lantern (Falmouth Stakes) and Wild Beauty (Natalma Stakes) all capturing G1 races over a mile, to son Hurricane Lane landing the 2021 St Leger over 2921 metres.


In total, Frankel has supplied eight Gr1 winners in 2021, with that tally including Adayar- victorious in both the Gr1 Cazoo Derby and G1 King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Qipco Stakes. Adayar is one of two Gr1 winners that Frankel has sired thus far produced by a daughter of Dubawi, with Dubawi also damsire of Frankel's 2021 G3 Darley Stakes winner Mostahdaf. Other Gr1 winners representing Frankel this past year include the aforementioned Hurricane Lane - also victorious in both the G1 Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby and Gr1

Grand Prix de Paris - triple German Gr1 winner Alpinista, and Australian Gr1 winners Converge (Treasury Brisbane J.J. Atkins) and Hungry Heart (The Star Australian Oaks, Vinery Stud Stakes). While many outstanding racehorses fail to live up to high expectations when retired to stud, it is safe to say that Frankel has met the lofty expectations set when he retired to Banstead Manor in 2012. The champion has already sired 83 stakes winners,

with Frankel's tally of British classic winners standing at one Derby winner, two St Leger winners and the Oaks winning Anapurna while his daughter Inspiral has been installed as favourite for the 2022 1000 Guineas and Oaks. Frankel also looks poised to make his mark as a sire of sires, with his four-time Gr1 winning son Cracksman (bred on similar lines to Alpinista) having first crop yearlings make up to 410 000 guineas this year.

While it is safe to say that Frankel has received every chance at stud in terms of quality of mare that he has covered, his statistics clearly indicate he has more than merited those opportunities. Already represented in South Africa by the stakes winning Miss Frankel, as well a handful of other winners, it is hopefully only a matter of time before Frankel has a sire son standing at stud in this country.


21 Frankel's mutiple Gr1 winner Adayar



Oisin Murphy – hard fought title win

UK 2021 – HIGHS, LOWS & UNDERDOGS With 2022 upon us, now’s a good time to reflect on and review the UK horse racing season of 2021. Despite the Covid pandemic’s effect on the industry, crowds were allowed back to race courses in July and they were treated to high quality racing in a year where the depth

of fields in group races were considered stronger than most seasons recently. Amongst the many great races and finishes, controversies and occasional wins by the underdog over the big Newmarket yards; here are my highlights of 2021.


Firstly, Adayar become the first Epsom Derby winner since Galileo in 2001 to follow up at Ascot in the prestigious all-aged race, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes as a threeyear-old. Galileo, the greatest stallion in Europe for over a century,

was unfortunately euthanized in July due to health reasons and Adayar his grandson by Frankel will hopefully follow in his footsteps at stud when retired. Next has to be Adayar’s trainer Charlie Appleby, who had a fantastic season winning the British Trainers title for the first time. Worldwide, his Moultan Paddock Stable amassed an incredible 17 Gr1 races in 2021, which included seven in the UK. Apart from the two Gr1 wins by Adayar, fellow sophomore and Frankel colt Hurricane Lane was victorious in the Irish Derby, the Grand Prix de Paris and the St Leger at Doncaster.

His leading sprinter Creative Force won the Champion Sprint and Champion TwoYear-Old Colt, the unbeaten Native Trail landed the Dewhurst Stakes on his final start of the season. Leading jumps jockey Rachael Blackmore broke records throughout 2021. The 32-year-old from County Tipperary, was crowned leading jockey at the Cheltenham Festival in March. Her six wins included Gr1 victories aboard Bob Olinger, Allaho and the super mare Honeysuckle in the Champion Hurdle. A month later at Aintree, she became the first female jockey to win the Grand


National in the 182-year history of the famous race aboard Minella Times. Blackmore finished a narrow second on the Irish Jockey’s Championship Log and was voted Irish Sportsperson of the Year and the BBC Sports Personality - World Sport Star of the Year. Finally, and ‘Topping the Pops’ as it were, was the British Flat Jockey’s Championship where defending champion jockey Oisin Murphy and William Buick went “tooth and nail” over the last few months, riding all over the country in search of race wins. Buick retained by the Godolphin operation with all

their major successes, still found the time to raid the smaller country tracks hunting winning rides just to try and stay with leader Oisin Murphy. Over the last three weeks of the title race, both jockeys and their respective agents had no rest as William Buick closed the gap from 13 to a mere 2 winners on the final

day that counted, Champions Day at Ascot. Both of these great riders (with win strike rates of 22%) certainly gave their followers a lot to cheer home during the run in and when William Buick struck early on the last day to narrow the gap further, a potential for the title being decided on the

a 26 Adayar - superb

final race of the day was still a possibility. Ultimately that did not materialise and a much relieved Oisin Murphy retained his jockey’s title by a mere 2 wins. After a titanic contest with all the effort from both jocks that lasted months, it’s a pity that there could only be one winner…



AN EARLY HANGOVER ? This wasn’t the way Cape Racing would have wanted to start 2022! The first racemeeting of a new year filled with hope and dreams has been replaced by a Fairview polytrack slot after the Mother City programme failed to muster sufficient interest. Maybe Cape racing just doesn’t work on Sundays at this time of the year, and it’s surely high time to start implementing a balancing of the books as the imbalance of stable power is now chipping away at the foundations. While the racing operator places the cause of a lost racemeeting at the door of the SA horse population situation, the predicament down South still does not augur well for the future. The Cape thus loses a racemeeting in the height of the local summer season and a week before the two day L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Festival. Given the reduced local horse population, it could well be that the two day festival just 5 days later contributed to the lack of interest, but a local veteran said that the imbalance of yard population numbers – ‘the big guys are

big and the small guys are small’ – is killing the local product. “It’s understandable that trainers pick and choose races – one doesn’t want your owners bumping each other. But the cherry picking, for want of a better word, distorts the census figures and leads to the big yards not providing the numbers support they could. Also, if one watched the scratchings for the meeting, it could be seen that horses were left in their ‘first choice’ races, where a move to ‘second choice’ might have seen a few eight horse fields being created and the meeting potentially saved,” said the insider. In a statement issued to the Sporting Post, Cape Racing said that unfortunately the race meeting scheduled for 2 January 2022 at Kenilworth did not attract sufficient declarations even after attempts to offer alternative races to replace those that didn’t stand up. The statement goes on to say that Western Cape trainers were asked for suggestions as to what races might work and four such races were put forward which also unfortunately did not stand up


with optimal declarations to host the race meeting. Cape Racing was left with no choice under the circumstances but to cancel the race meeting accordingly. The stakes for the cancelled race meeting will however not be lost to stakeholders and races will be added to forthcoming race meetings. This will be decided based on the programme requirements of the trainers and the horse population accordingly. Cape Racing has already reduced the number of race meetings in the region for 2022 – including reducing the number of meetings in January by one. The problem we’ve experienced here is sadly indicative of the current horse population situation in South Africa. Going forward, we will review the Western Cape fixture list further, in consultation with trainers to discuss future improvements we can make to the programme going forward.



a The 2021 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate winner Jet Dark


Candiese Lenferna



Entries were received on Monday for the 161st renewal of the Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate.

South Africa’s premier weightfor-age mile will be held at Kenilworth on Saturday 8 January, Day 2 of the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Festival.

A total of 14 entries, headed by defending champion Jet Dark and dual Met winner Rainbow Bridge have been received for the R1,5 million contest.

L’ORMARINS QUEEN’S PLATE – FIRST ENTRIES 2 5 9 3 4 14 6 13 8 1 10 7 12 11

Rainbow Bridge Jet Dark Kommetdieding Linebacker Seeking The Stars Russian Rock Warrior FireAlley Rockin’ Ringo After The Rain Pomp And Power Good Traveller Trip Of Fortune Pacaya

In a typically star-studded line-up, the likely line-up includes Vodacom Durban July winner Kommetdieding, dual Gr1 winner Linebacker and recent Cape Guineas

(7G) (4C) (4C) (4G) (4C) (4G) (4G) (4G) (6G) (4C) (3G) (3G) (3C) (3C)

runner-up, Pomp And Power. In the other Gr1 contest on what promises to be a sensational day of racing, Gauteng star War Of Athena stands out in a thirteen strong


Eric Sands Justin Snaith HWJ Crawford/M Rix Vaughan Marshall Vaughan Marshall Dean Kannemeyer Justin Snaith Candice Bass-Robinson Piet Botha Gareth van Zyl Justin Snaith Glen Kotzen Candice Bass-Robinson Justin Snaith entry for the R750 000 Cartier Paddock Stakes to be run over 1800m.

Candiese Lenferna

Craig Zackey – has the BMT and takes over from Grant van Niekerk

ZACKEY GETS THE CALL-UP The plum big race engagement by Milnerton trainer Vaughan Marshall for the top yard’s spearhead Linebacker will provide 26 year old Craig Zackey with a flying start to 2022. Zackey told the Sporting Post on Tuesday that he was thrilled to get a ‘big horse’ for the season. “It’s an honour to get the callup for Linebacker, who is one of our top ranked gallopers and a horse who just doesn’t know how to run a bad race,” said Zackey.

The dual Gr1 winning Klawervlei Stud-bred son of Captain Of All has proven to be one of South Africa’s most consistent gallopers over an extended period and rounded of the prep for his January Gr1 double assault with a gutsy third behind stablemate Seeking The Stars in the Gr2 Green Point Stakes on 4 January. “With Linebacker’s regular rider Grant van Niekerk giving his notice and many of the other guys already committed, we were fortunate to get Craig Zackey. He has ridden his Gr1 winners and he arrives in the Cape next week for the month


of January,” trainer Vaughan Marshall told the Sporting Post. He confirmed that his 2021 Cape Derby winner Linebacker would be aimed at the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate on 8 January and the WSB Cape Town Met three weeks later. His stablemate, Green Point winner Seeking The Stars, will also likely be lining up in the royal weight-for-age mile, while there are hopes that another of the Marshall stars Rascallion will have recovered from an injury to be ready for the SA Champions Season on the East Coast.

January is a big month for the Zackey family. It was almost two years ago when Craig booted Vardy home to win the Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate. A month earlier he had captured the Gr1 Cape Fillies Guineas on the subsequently exported Missisippi Burning for Adam Marcus And four days after Vardy’s royal victory - 15 January, to be precise – Craig and his partner Sasha welcomed their daughter Sierra into the world. And to round off a lifechanging dream three months, Craig crowned a Cape Summer Gr1 treble when Golden Ducat won the Cape Derby in February.

Fast forward to the present – a very different world - and the Zackeys’ beautiful bundle of joy is almost 2 and Dad’s on the hunt for his next Gr1 trophy! The party yearn is gone and fatherhood and age has definitely mellowed the former SA Champion Apprentice. “I will be travelling to the Cape as soon as possible after our Highveld New Year’s Day racemeeting and will spend the week there focussing on the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Festival,” added an excited Zackey. In a relatively brief career, the Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfonteinsponsored jockey has always


been a standout, and is a man for the big occasion, as his ten Gr1 winners bear out. He has ridden his Gr1 winners in all three of our major provinces, including his most recent, Battle Force in the Gr1 Golden Horse Sprint at Hollywoodbets Scottsville in June 2021. His first was aboard Arabian Beat in the Gr1 SA Nursery during his apprenticeship.

Not Only Royalty Are Welcome! Cape Racing have advised that loyal attendees at Kenilworth Racecourse are welcome at the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Racing Festival. Naturally attendance is limited in terms of current constraints.

and racing action from the Pocket Power facility with great views across the racecourse. Many regular punters have already been communicated with around the lounge being available for them to enjoy the racing from on the weekend.

As per the previously released Press Statement with regards to hospitality and on course access for the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Racing Festival the organiser and operator have allocated the Pocket Power lounge to loyal attendees of Kenilworth Racecourse.

Pocket Power

Eager punters and fans can follow the social spectacle

– Bookings will be essential (no cost to book)

– The Pocket Power lounge will be serving an a la carte lunch – The venue will be able to accommodate 150 people – In venue tote facilities will be available

Please note that the smart casual, blue and white dress code will be applicable, and normal COVID protocols will be in place. Only fully vaccinated spectators will be granted access on course. Whilst all hospitality packages purchased are inside the venue, patrons will be welcome to enjoy trackside viewing and walk around outside where there will be various decorative elements on display. Bookings can be made via admin@caperacing.co.za or WhatsApp 063 929 8630.

Love & Money! Has a sporting championship ever been battled out between fiancees? That is a scenario we potentially could follow through the British Flat season. The Racing Post reports that reigning three-time champion Oisin Murphy has handed in his licence to focus on his rehabilitation and faces multiple disciplinary charges following a breach of Covid-19 travel protocols in 2020 and two failed breath tests over the last eight months.

Tom Marquand has finished third in the last two seasons and is one of the top riders best placed to make a serious challenge. He hit triple figures in the condensed championship campaign for a second time in 2021, riding a career-best 117 winners from 2,000 Guineas day to Qipco British Champions Day. Just as importantly, no rider showed a greater endeavour than Marquand, who had the most rides of any jockey in that period courtesy of 737 mounts, 20 more than his nearest rival. Marquand did the same in 2020 when he rode 114 winners from a mammoth 822 rides. 37

That proves he has the work rate and desire to ride winners wherever and whenever they come – a key attribute for a title race that can only be described as a physical and mental slog. Marquand’s record-breaking partner Hollie Doyle has finished fourth and fifth in the last two seasons and is regarded by many as a future first female champion. Doyle’s career continues to go from strength to strength and she can certainly have a leading say. Game on!




JC Photos


The girls dominate as Anna Capri (Gavin Lerena) storms home to beat Gallic Princess (Keagan de Melo)

ANNA WRAPS UP 2021 IN STYLE In the year that her supersire retired from the stallion barn after an illustrious career at Avontuur, there was some sentimental irony in VAR’s flashy grey daughter Anna Capri’s victory blitz in the R200 000 Gr3 Lebelo Sprint at Turffontein on Tuesday evening. The race brought the curtain

down on the South African feature race programme for 2021. Gavin Lerena has enjoyed a purple patch as the sun sets on the old year, and after picking up both features at Hollywoodbets Greyville on Sunday from just two rides, the former SA Champion was on the mark again from just a handful of chances 48 hours


later. After stalking the pacy Winter Stories for much of the 1000m trip, Anna Capri (20-1) turned on the jets at the 250m marker to beat the low-flying Gallic Princess (40-1) by a length in a time of 56,78 secs. Bard Of Avon (3-1) did good work late to bank third cheque, three quarters of

a length ahead of the tiring Winter Stories. The favourite Alesian Chief showed some early pace but fell away midway to finish just over 8 lengths off. Both jockey Lerena and trainer David Niewenhuizen credit the starting stall handler staff after allowing the 4yo some leeway. “She was a bit uppity at the start her last few starts. Today they loaded us a bit later, and

while she jumped awkwardly, she was quickly away,” added Lerena.

Anna Capri cost R200 000 at the 2018 BSA National Yearling Sale.

Racing in the silks of Zane Kirsten, Anna Capri made it 5 wins with 8 places from 16 starts for stakes of R425 600.

Next up is the Gr3 London News Stakes, Gr3 Tony Ruffel Stakes and the Gr3 Three Troikas at Turffontein on New Year’s Day. Follow all the action and news on www. sportingpost.co.za

Bred by Riethuiskraal Stud, she is a daughter of VAR (Forest Wildcat) – who is nearing close on 60 stakes winners – out of the twice winning Daylami mare, Zemfira.

The River Retires Native River, the 2018 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner, has been retired after failing to finish in the Coral Welsh Grand National on Monday. The 11-year-old also won the Hennessy Gold Cup and Welsh National in 2016. In all, he won 11 of his 24 chase starts for trainer Colin Tizzard, bringing in more than £1m in prize money for owners Garth and Anne Broom. Assistant trainer Joe Tizzard said Native River had been "an absolute legend for us all".

"His wins in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, the Hennessy and the Coral Welsh Grand National were all massive, memorable days for Garth and Anne and the whole team," he added. "He's a lovely character, and has been a special horse to train. He will now enjoy a happy and well-deserved retirement." Having won the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury in 2016, Native River added victory in the Welsh National the same season before finishing third in the 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup.


The following year, he beat Might Bite by four-anda-half-lengths to win at Cheltenham. Owner Garth Broom described him as "a horse of a lifetime" adding that "the writing was on the wall" after pulling up in the Welsh National on Monday. Broom added: "He has been such a grand servant and we decided enough is enough. It is the first time in about 25 races that he has been out of the first four, I think. We have been very lucky to have him."


Candiese Lenferna

Gavin Lerena steers Zimbaba to a long overdue victory

TARRY – LERENA’S BOXING DAY DOUBLE With a 100% partnership strike-rate on the day, Randjesfontein trainer Sean Tarry and jockey Gavin Lerena rounded off a terrific Christmas weekend raid on KwaZulu-Natal when they celebrated a Boxing Day feature race double as the 4yo Zimbaba stormed to

victory in the R125 000 Gr3 Flamboyant Stakes. Much like her stablemate Ikigai, who won the Listed Christmas Stakes a half hour earlier, Zimbaba ended a prolonged period in the doldrums – her last win was in the Listed Swallow Stake in January 2021


– when she stormed in from some way off the pace to register a top-class win over the year older Mount Laurel, who looked a winner close home. The Gr3 Flamboyant Stakes headlined a competitive card at the holiday province city

venue and with the Pick 6 delivering a dividend a shade over R100 000, it was a mixed day for punters.

Tombe. The dam, named Pin Turn, is credited with one win in the USA.

Enjoying her first win over ground, Zimbaba (2-1) put it all together from the widest draw to beat Mount Laurel (backed to 5-2) by 0,90 lengths with the 10-1 Lyrical Dance a further 1,20 lengths back in third.

Zimbaba has now won 3 races with 5 places from 12 stars for stakes of R252 875. She was the only Legislate progeny to run on the day and is one of four stakes winners to have emerged from the first crop of South Africa’s Horse Of The Year in 2013-2014.

Bred and raced by Drakenstein, Zimbaba is a daughter of Legislate (Dynasty) out of a Pivotal daughter of Zim Champion Ipi

Legislate’s first crop also includes Gr3 WSB Legal Eagle Stakes winner Hoedspruit, winner of this season’s Listed Nelson Mandela Bay Racing


Algoa Cup, and Veronica Mars. The latter caught the eye when finishing a close up third in the recent Gr3 Victress Stakes.


Candiese Lenferna

Guy Farrell and Anthony Delpech lead Ikigai (Gavin Lerena) in after the smart win


A 5yo entire and winless since an impressive victory in the first leg of the 2020 SA Triple Crown, the Gr2 Gauteng Guineas, Sean Tarry’s Ikigai gave the highriding Hollywood Syndicate a first stakes winner for the former multiple SA Champion trainer when winning the R100 000 Listed Christmas Stakes at Hollywoodbets Greyville on Boxing Day.

Rivalland longshot Tristful (161) by 0,40 lengths in a time of 97,31 secs.

Easy to back at 8-1, Ikigai finished powerfully to give Gavin Lerena and Sean Tarry the first leg of a Boxing Day feature double when he stormed clear to beat Tony

The South African Champion Sire elect for 2021-2022 other flagbearers this season include Chansonette (Gr1 World Sports Betting Cape Fillies Guineas), Seeking The Stars (Gr2 WSB

The Gauteng raider and 2-1 tote favourite Sound Of Summer was a further 0,40 lengths back in third, with the 33-1 Tread Swiftly a further half length back in fourth. Ikigai is from the first crop of the exciting Maine Chance stallion Vercingetorix (Silvano).


Club Prive Green Point Stakes, Gr3 #ThisIsRacing Matchem Stakes), Alesian Chief (Gr3 World Sports Betting Merchants) and Pomp And Power (Gr2 Concorde Cup). Sunday’s winner is out of the one-time winning Al Mufti mare, Al Shiba. Ikigai is thus bred on a similar cross to the Silvano sired Gr1 winners Al Sahem, Bold Silvano, and Kings Gambit. Ikigai has won 5 races with 5 places from 20 starts for stakes of R986 875.

Visionaire, Roberts, Venniker On The Double Lammerskraal Stud’s Gr1 winning stallion Visionaire had a notable day on Boxing Day, when the King’s Bishop Stakes-winning son of Grand Slam sired a pair of winners at Hollywoodbets Greyville. Both winners were trained by Michael Roberts and both Visionaire runners were ridden to victory by Rachel Venniker. Visionaire’s first success

on Sunday came when his three-year-old son Chara Sands shed his maiden when victorious in the first race. A full-brother to the useful Nikiya, Chara Sands built on two good previous runs when storming home to land the Compliments Of The Season Maiden Plate (1000m) by an emphatic three lengths. Bred by Verna Roberts, Chara Sands is out of the Joshua Dancer mare Baronova.


Roberts and Venniker also teamed up to win the third race, the Call Telebet Track And Ball Fixed Odds On 031 314 1155 MR 94 Handicap, with Visionaire’s gelded son Ad Altisima. Bred by Mr Kalil, the fiveyear-old claimed the fifth win of his career.


A Shoe In! On 31 December 1953, Bill Shoemaker set the world record for most winners (485) in a year -- a mark that held up for 20 years Racing people frequently referred to Shoemaker's ‘soft hands’ – those that took the reins of a horse and made ‘Shoe’ the boss. Those hands guided 8833 winners, a world record that would stand until broken by Laffit Pincay, Jr. in 1999. In 42 years, Shoemaker won 11 Triple Crown races, 1,009 stakes races and 10 national

money titles. He earned more than $123 million in purses, about $10 million of which went into his pocket. Shoemaker's two most famous races came in the Kentucky Derby. One was in 1957, when he misjudged the finish line with Gallant Man and blew a sure win. The other was aboard Ferdinand in 1986, at age 54, when he became the oldest to win the Run for the Roses. Billie Lee Shoemaker was born on 19 August 1931 in the


west Texas town of Fabens. He weighed between 2940 ounces and was 10 1/2 inches long. One apocryphal story has it that Shoemaker's grandmother put him in a shoebox and placed it next to an oven to keep him alive that first night. He retired in 1990, riding his last race in Santa Anita, the place he called home. Shoemaker died in October 2003 at age 72.

- Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden

n Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies -

Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies

Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golden Oldies - Golde


EYES.HEART.SOUL. Internationally renowned as the home of fine wines and fast horses, and a landmark on the R44 that connects the historic towns of Stellenbosch and Somerset West, the magnificent Avontuur Estate will host an unique ‘Art & Equus Exhibition’ from 12 January to 13 February 2022. The time-honoured vineyards of Avontuur Estate have been producing quality wine grapes for over a century and their world-class range of awardwinning wines and champion racehorses proudly carry the flag of a destination that

is spoken of with admiration across the globe. The Art & Equus Exhibition will be a popular port of call during the Cape’s Sizzling Summer Season, and with the highlight calendar drawcards of the WSB Cape Town Met on 29 January and the CTS Cape Premier Yearling Sale on 6 February, interest amongst local and international horse and artlovers, as well as racing fans, is building. Participating artists include Riaan Van Zyl, Tarryn Stebbing and Robin Kutinyu, while the internationally acclaimed


racing photographer Liesl King, Equus Champion photographer Candiese Lenferna and local lensman Chase Liebenberg, will showcase their individual thoroughbred trademark in what will be a feast for the eyes, heart and soul. The trademark eclectic Avontuur blend of horses and wines will be celebrated against a backdrop of fine wine and fabulous food in the intimate gallery space at the Avontuur Wine Estate, where a spectacular range of equestrian art will be showcased.

The ‘Art & Equus Exhibition’ will play host to fine art, illustrated works, photography and sculpture, in a celebration of the beauty and majesty of a beloved animal that has enthralled millions, inspired bestsellers, changed lives and won wars. Join likeminded folk on this journey into the creative world of equine artistry, where reality and love coalesce in a blaze of fantasy, and where

the mind is your only boundary!

Restaurant inquiries:

Avontuur is open daily for wine tasting and a delicious meal, or even consider spoiling yourself with an overnight stay at the Avontuur Manor House.

021 8554296 Or openhand@polka.co.za

The ‘Art & Equus Exhibition’ will be open daily from 12 January to 13 February 2022.


Art inquiries: 021 8553450 Or info@avontuurestate.co.za Accomodation inquiries: Email enquiries@ avonuurestate.co.za, speak to Chantelle, or visit www.booking.com


LAST CHANCE TO BE A WINNER! The Sporting Post is proud to partner with BUSH and offer our breeders and readers the opportunity of enjoying the new generation of Future Stars.

share in the future champion by the generous breeders. This week we ask our readers to choose from an eighteenstrong impressive class of December 2021.

Our November winner was Ian Trimmel, who selected Heuningsfontein's Horizon colt bred by Armand and Leon Lotz.

All you have to do is select your foal of choice by means of a comment on this post on our website.

In an exciting and unanticipated conclusion to the win, Ian will be allocated a

Please quote the number of your choice, telling us briefly why you decided on your pick. Voting closes Tuesday 4

January midday. This is your last chance to win a BUSH WELLNESS HAMPER! The winner will be announced in the Sprint on Wednesday, 5 January. Please scroll down to view the foals and provide us with your comment here - quoting your winning number and supporting thoughts!



Drakenstein Stud (c) One World ex Mar Del Sur

Avontuur Estate (c) Rafeef ex It’s My Life



FUTURE STARS PROUDLY SPONSORED BY BUSH Winner announced! And more fun facts in the Dacha article, hiliting CBD in women's health

CBD Health for all genders Holistic health is getting easier, and Bush is 56 bringing it closer to you.



Hemel ‘N Aarde (c) Horizon ex Sizedoescount

Hemel ‘N Aarde (c) Horizon ex Miracle Play



Hemel ‘N Aarde (c) Horizon ex Big Sugar

Bush Hill Stud (f) Willow Magic ex Ikimasu




Summerhill Equestrian (c) Act Of War ex Fullfillyourdream

Sherwin Jerrier (f) Master Of My Fate ex Regardstobroadway



Mr & Mrs Devine (c) Gimmethegreenlight ex Come Fly With Me

Sherwin Jerrier (f) Talk Of The Town ex Seek The Summit




Camargue Stud (f) Erupt ex Daily Flight

Camargue Stud (c) Querari ex Vino Veritas




Geoff Van Lear (f) Vercingetorix ex Schippers

Mr & Mrs Devine (f) Royal Mo ex Captain’s Darling



Winterbach Stud (c) What A Winter ex Pemba Island

Peter De Lacey (f) Oratorio ex Sounds Positive 60



Camargue Stud (f) Act Of War ex Royal Berkshire

Camargue Stud (c) Last Winter ex Winging It Wild


results up to: 2021-12-28

TRAINERS Name Mr P A Peter Mr S J Snaith Mr S G Tarry Mr M F de Kock Mr G D Smith


Wins Win%

422 572 320 195 488

79 82 42 43 56

18.7 14.3 13.1 22.1 11.5



65 74 30 31 55

47 75 29 19 49



111 66 67 78 49

93 62 58 68 56

Other Places Place %

Win Stake (R)

Total Stakes (R)

79 118 53 40 92

45.3 46.7 35.0 46.2 40.2

4,391,125 4,233,400 3,302,625 2,583,688 2,318,750

6,506,875 6,492,650 4,443,438 3,614,375 3,575,875

Other Places Place %

Win Stake (R)

Total Stakes (R)

134 99 70 128 91

6,376,000 4,446,575 3,357,175 3,761,500 2,644,888

9,463,250 6,450,538 5,000,025 6,228,850 4,355,338

191 267 112 90 196

JOCKEYS Name Mr W B Kennedy Mr S Khumalo Mr R D Fourie Mr M A Yeni Mr K de Melo

Rides Wins Win% 709 521 375 621 405

123 88 75 74 54

17.3 16.9 20.0 11.9 13.3

338 227 195 274 196

47.7 43.6 52.0 44.1 48.4

BREEDERS B.T. B.T. Total Runrs Runs AEPR Wnrs Wins Winrs/ Places Winrs Wins Stakes (R) Rnrs %


Wilgerbosdri� & Mauritzfontein Klawervlei Stud Drakenstein Stud (Nom: Mrs G A Rupert) Maine Chance Farms (Pty) Ltd Summerhill Stud (Pty) Ltd

226 277

747 946

36,233 26,380

81 106 75 92

35.8 315 27.1 362

7 3

7 4

8,188,713 7,307,275

123 114 113

395 378 433

37,171 37,585 28,125

42 41 26

34.1 165 36.0 160 23.0 154

7 2 1

7 2 1

4,572,088 4,284,688 3,178,125

B.T. Wins

Total Stakes (R)

9 5 1 1 0

5,381,800 4,640,563 4,357,813 4,264,275 4,200,450

61 54 33


Runrs Runs AEPR

Vercingetorix * Silvano (GER) Master Of My Fate What A Winter Querari (GER)

122 127 140 141 146

382 404 499 450 492

44,113 36,540 31,127 30,243 28,770

B.T. Wnrs Wins Winrs/ Places Winrs Rnrs % 52 49 43 48 48

67 60 52 59 56

42.6 38.6 30.7 34.0 32.9

153 173 236 186 200

See all the detailed standings - Click here 62

7 5 1 1 0




One of two very exciting games that will chorus the New Year! What better way is there of bringing in 2022 than with some simply sumptuous English football. I’m excited about this one! Arsenal are slowly coming into their own and City are the ultimate test. Ryan Liberty suggests we sit back and take this all in – before we do it all again on Sunday with Chelsea and Liverpool! Arsenal vs Manchester City | Saturday 1 January | Emirates Stadium | 14h30 To Win (90 mins) Arsenal 48/10 Draw 36/10 Manchester City 5/10 Arsenal Arsenal have truly adopted the narrative of prioritizing one’s defence. Mikel Arteta is beginning to show why the patience shown by the club (and only some of its supporters) was justified. Their record against ‘struggling’ teams is exactly what it needs to be if they want to challenge for Champions League spots. Duly dispatching Norwich, Burnley, Leeds, Newcastle and Watford are games that would have instilled confidence in their

young squad…doing it without conceding a goal would have been the very necessary cherry on top.

Gerrard will largely influence the narrative around young managers in the world’s top leagues.

The relationship between Ben White, Gabriel and Aaron Ramsdale have seen the Gunners craft a secure defence and a solid platform for their midfield to transition the game. I saw a brilliant statistic which further speaks to the impressive defensive performance of those three, Arsenal haven’t conceded a goal before the 38th minute of the 14 games they have played together…I think its these sorts of milestones (small as they may be) that have changed the feel at the Emirates and given Arteta’s side a run of fantastic results.

Arsenal will no doubt come into this game brimming with confidence, they have won their last five fixtures (in all competition) scoring 19 times and conceding just twice! They will challenge Pep’s City and if they ask the right questions, we could enjoy a traditionally English, endto-end, game of football to welcome the New Year. Manchester City

What more can one really say about this City side? They’ve won their last 10 games Of course, they will face a titanic with the utmost conviction. challenge in Manchester City, but They are becoming as sure I would hope they see the game a bet as betting may allow, according to the bookmakers, as a free hit. Arsenal is not yet to lift the league title once a side capable of challenging again…although stranger City, that’s clear. Their fight is things have happened. not at the summit of the league at this moment in time. They need to continue chipping away City have been ruthless but looking back at the start of and crafting out their identity the season they seemed a under their young manager, little awkward at times. They beat midtable and struggling lost to Spurs on the opening teams and ensure they secure weekend, and we all sat up those points…and when they a little straighter…but since face sides like City – use it as a measuring tool of their progress then they have been almost impossibly clinical. and a test of the resolve in their team. The Sky Blues have become I say all of that with the greatest synonymous with getting out of the gates quickly, amount of respect. I’ve enjoyed scoring early and then watching their slow and steady suffocating their opponents improvement and I think the into submission. The likes Mikel Arteta and Steven



pressure is unrelenting and the expectation for the boss is nothing if not constant. It will be interesting, however, if Arsenal can weather the early storm and just try and cause City to question themselves a little bit.

with the added curveball of COVID-19 the margin for error is small…even for City. They are still just six points ahead of Liverpool and Chelsea (Liverpool have a game in hand) with half the season to go.

We saw glimpses of those nerves at the Etihad in the second half against Leicester, but the Foxes have issues of their own which would always inevitably come back to haunt them – set pieces being one of them.

Arsenal have a dreadful record against City in the league, and the way City are playing I think the best outcome is a good game…but for the result, it’s an away win...

Arsenal have been impressive though and I wouldn’t discourage you from backing them to get on the scoresheet themselves. But for me the straight away win is just as good as any ‘Christmas Cracker’ you might have enjoyed on Boxing Day.

Prediction: Manchester City (5/10)

This point of the season is always exciting, games come thick and fast, squads are stretched already and now \

to suggest they don’t win here, the quality they have in their first-team, coupled with the rotational depth available to Pep Guardiola is simply scary.

To be completely honest, I think 5/10 about Manchester City is a brilliant price. There is nothing

Covid Shocker The Premier League has announced 103 new Covid cases among club players and staff, the highest weekly number recorded since testing figures began being circulated in May last year. The Premier League has confirmed it has reverted to emergency measures following a raft of top-flight postponements. Increased testing to daily lateral flow and twiceweekly PCR tests have been introduced. Lateral flow testing was previously

carried out twice a week. “The League can today confirm that between Monday 20 December and Sunday 26 December, 15,186 Covid-19 tests were administered on players and club staff. Of these, there were 103 new positive cases,” read a statement. “The Premier League’s Covid-19 emergency measures include protocols such as wearing face coverings while indoors, observing social distancing, limiting treatment time, as well as the increased testing.


“The League is continuing to work with clubs to keep people safe by helping mitigate the risks of Covid-19 within their squads. “We are also liaising closely with the Government, local authorities and supporter groups, while being responsive to any future changes to national or local guidance.”


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