SP Sprint - 31 January 2024

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Wednesday 31 January 2024


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World Sports Betting Cape Town Met winning rider Daniel Muscutt gets a congratulatory hug from Ros Vivienne Coetzee as his proud Dad, Peter Muscutt, looks on. Candiese Lenferna captured the moment.

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Issue: 05/2024

On the cover

Visiting jockey Daniel Muscutt gets Double Superlative home to win Saturday’s R2 million World Sports Betting Gr1 Cape Town Met. Image courtesy of Candiese Lenferna



Highveld Hots Up Guineas day at Turffontein


Superlatives Aplenty! Snaith’s Met twice over


A Princess Royal Story of a star


Kannemeyer’s Derby Hope Don’t be envious!


Premier Power Play Thursday’s inner city sale spectacular

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Sandringham Summit and Gimmeanotherchance – clash again on Saturday | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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Final fields for Guineas Day 2024 were declared on Tuesday as we count the days down to the start of 4Racing’s The Championships Season at Turffontein on Saturday. The individual sex Guineas features kickstart the SA Triple Crown and Triple Tiara series.

Gimmeanotherchance in the Jonsson Workwear Gr Dingaans.

David Nieuwenhuizen star Sandringham Summit makes a welcome return to action in the TAB Gr2 Gauteng Guineas after inclement weather delayed his anticipated programme in the Got The Greenlight Stakes earlier this month.

Trainer Robyn Klaasen will fancy the chances of Purple Pitcher, despite his wide draw.

The race was run a week later than carded, and this was felt to be too close to Saturday’s engagement. Sandringham Summit, who now runs in the familiar Varsfontein Stud silks after being syndicated for stud, last ran on Betway Summer Cup day when beaten into third behind Purple Pitcher and

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The son of New Predator has won five on the trot since shedding his maiden in August. Mike de Kock holds a power-packed five strong hand in the Wilgerbosdrift Gr2 Gauteng Fillies Guineas headed by recent Mike de Kock Gr2 Ipi Tombe Stakes winner Gimme A Nother, who is unbeaten in four starts and looks very special. Summerveld-based Robbie Hill is the only visiting trainer to take his chances, and is represented in both features.


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THE CHAMPIONSHIPS SEASON The eagerly awaited annual 4Racing’s The Championships Season, a thrilling 4-part horseracing extravaganza, is set to make a dazzling return. This year, Champions Day on 6 April introduces a world-class premier World Pool event that allows punters worldwide to participate in a unified pool, generating unprecedented liquidity.

a World Pool event with worldwide liquidity for the first 10 races, this is set to captivate horseracing enthusiasts globally. Concluding the season is The Championships Finale, taking place on Saturday, 27 April.

The highlight includes a multi-million dollar betting experience and a strategic partnership with the renowned The Hong Kong Jockey Club, celebrated for its extensive and fluid pari-mutuel pools. This collaboration aims to deliver an unparalleled betting venture for local punters, ushering in a new era of horseracing standards in the country.

“We are thrilled to present a season that not only showcases the peak of South African horseracing, but also delivers an unparalleled global experience for punters and racegoers. The inclusion of Champions Day as a World Pool event elevates the stakes, and is an enticing opportunity for punters to engage like never before. We welcome the Hong Kong Jockey Club to this amazing season and look forward to a spectacular World Pool event,” said Fundi Sithebe, 4Racing CEO.

Racegoers will witness the country’s finest thoroughbreds vie for victory in this high-stakes season commencing with Guineas Day, on Saturday, 3 February. The day will also kick off the highly anticipated SA Triple Crown and SA Triple Tiara series, with the most recent winner of the Triple Tiara being Richard Fourie and Sean Tarry’s Rain in Holland in 2022. 4Racing also have the pleasure of welcoming back Wilgerbosdrift as the sponsor of the 2024 Triple Tiara as well as TAB which will be sponsoring the first leg of the Gauteng Guineas. The second event of The Championships Season is Classic Day, to be held on Saturday, 2 March, a showcase of timeless horse racing excellence.

“We’re delighted to be further strengthening our ties with South African racing this season, with the inclusion of Champions Day from Turffontein as a World Pool event for the first time, which will give customers from 28 countries the chance to bet on South African racing as well as access to unrivalled pools. World Pool’s involvement on Champions Day – part of the excellent 4Racing The Championships initiative – also seeks to raise the profile of a key race in the South African calendar and showcase high-quality action from an increasingly important racing jurisdiction,” said Michael Fitzsimons, Executive Director, Wagering Products of the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

The highlight of the season is Champions Day 2024, taking place on Saturday, 6 April -presenting four Grade 1 races and being

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Newmarket-based visitor Daniel Muscutt became the first overseasbased jockey to win the R2 million World Sports Betting Gr1 Cape Town Met when he rode a superbly polished race to get the Snaith longshot Double Superlative home to win the Cape flagship race in sensational style at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday. Double Superlative powers in ahead of Bernard Fayd’herbe and Rascallion | Credit: Candiese Lenferna 31 JANUARY 2024 | 15


Going places! Justin Snaith, Nic Jonsson, Rachel Venniker (third place on Without Question) and Daniel Muscutt | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

The 28-year Zimbabwe-born son of leading KZN trainer Peter Muscutt had ridden as an apprentice in the Cape and was on a long overdue visit to see his Dad, and escape the unforgiving Newmarket weather in the African summer sunshine. Looking like he was in a hurry to catch his British Airways flight out of Cape Town on Sunday to get home to his wife Claire and six month old daughter Florence, the Hollywoodbets-sponsored Muscutt rode a cracker of a race from off the pace on 2021 Cape Guineas winner Double Superlative, who made it a triumphant return to the winner’s enclosure after a 14 month lay-off which sabotaged much of the best part of his career. The subject of some serious money in the week, Rascallion, who had run sixth behind Jet Dark in last year’s renewal, was taken to lead by Bernard 16 | 31 JANUARY 2024

Fayd’herbe from his wide draw, as those on his inside jostled for position. Fayd’herbe, a thinking man’s jockey, looked to have pulled off a tactical masterstroke, as he came up the outside in the run for home and kept rolling. But Daniel Muscutt was following the game and he switched Double Superlative in for his run. In a thrilling drive to the wire, Double Superlative (33-1) got up to beat Rascallion (25-2) to give Justin Snaith his third Met victory and a double for high-riding owner Nic Jonsson, who enjoyed a dream day. Jet Dark won in the same silks last year. Double Superlative clocked 123,4 secs and beat Rascallion by 0,40 lengths. Riding in her first Met in the same silks as the winner, newly qualified Rachel Venniker, South


Owner Nic Jonsson and Daniel Muscutt cast an emotional pair after a great win | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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Africa’s only female jockey, got the 50-1 Without Question up for third, with the flat-footed See It Again (5-10) plodding into fourth, and 3,15 lengths off the winner. The favourite, who is still a colt, clearly hit a flat spot as he appears to have done in his last few starts, and jockey Piere Strydom, who described the pace as ‘horrible’, said that the winner had actually come from behind him, so had no real excuses. “He may just run better fresh, but I will leave that up to the trainer,” added Strydom. Described as a horse that is something of a ringer for the stable’s now retired multiple Durban July winner Do It Again, Double Superlative was bred by Patrica Devine Investments from Klawervlei

sire Twice Over (Observatory) out of the Jet Master five-time winner, Come Fly With Me. A R375 000 Cape Premier Yearling Sale purchase, Double Superlative has won 3 races with 6 places from 13 starts for stakes of R1 962 800. Justin Snaith added that his charge was a champion 3yo, whom star jockey Anton Marcus, who won the Guineas on him, had described as one of the best horses he had ridden. Double Superlative is still an entire, so who knows what the future may hold for the lightly raced 5yo? The Pick 6 on the day failed to reach the target pool of R10 million but paid a healthy R585 000.

Daniel Muscutt raises his trophy in triumph | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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‘He’s the most beautiful looking horse. This is what we can breed. We might not have the biggest stud farms or the best stallions and mares, but this is what we produce, which is just so typical of South Africa’ – Justin Snaith Double Superlative (Daniel Muscutt) is welcomed by the Snaith Racing Team | Credit: Chase Liebenberg 31 JANUARY 2024 | 21


Daniel Muscutt is all smiles as Double Superlative seems to be wondering what all the fuss is about | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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Colleagues unite! Winning trainer Justin Snaith and winning jockey’s Dad Peter Muscutt, also a trainer, enjoy the moment | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

There is nothing more heart warming than to see a class horse come back successfully from injury and it was very much a case of patience rewarded when Double Superlative scored a splendid win in the Gr1 World Sports Betting Cape Town Met.

ended the talented colt’s career, not to mention a near fatal bout of colic, but thanks to the expertise of world-renowned vet Dr John McVeigh, Double Superlative eventually returned to training.

Owner Nick Jonsson and the Snaith team deserve all the plaudits for persevering with the striking bay, who had proven himself one of the leading three-year-olds of the 2021-22 season by winning the Gr1 Cape Guineas and reaching the frame in both the Gr1 Cape Met and Gr1 Cape Derby. Sadly, it all went pear-shaped when he suffered a tendon injury after his sole Durban start, a closeup fifth behind Zapatillas in the Gr2 KZN Guineas at Hollywoodbets Greyville. That injury could have

The now five-year-old added considerable spice to an otherwise low-key Hollywoodbets Durbanville midweek meeting and acquitted himself with aplomb to finish second in his pipe opener over 1250m, a distance patently too short.

Finally, after a 16-month layoff, he made his comeback in September, having missed his entire four-year-old season.

Following unplaced efforts in the Gr3 Cape Mile, Gr2 Cape Merchants and Gr1 L’Ormarins King’s Plate, it came as no surprise that he was relatively friendless in the Met market. However, trainer Justin Snaith has always 31 JANUARY 2024 | 23


maintained that this was Double Superlative’s main mission for the summer season and the patience and belief in the horse was fully vindicated when he bounced back with a vengeance. As he is still an entire, somewhat of a rarity these days, Double Superlative looks an attractive stallion prospect for the simple reason that he is a dual Gr1 winner and has the looks to go with it, being a big, bold individual. Granted, his sire Twice Over is not everyone’s cup of tea, but as the sire of a Met winner, a Horse of the Year and dual Durban July winner (Do It Again), not to mention a Gr1 Cape Derby winner (See It Again) and a champion juvenile (Sand And Sea), he surely deserves more respect. On the female side, Double Superlative is a fourth-generation Devine bred, as his first three dams were all bred by Patricia and the late Henry Devine, who acquired his fourth dam, the Drum Beat mare Heaven Help Us. More to the point, they raced both his dam and broodmare sire Jet Master, for whom this race was a coup, as he also sired the dam of this year’s runner-up Rascallion.

Double Superlative’s dam Come Fly With Me won five races and reached the frame twice in both the Gr3 Diana Stakes and Champagne Stakes. Whereas she won up to a mile, her own sister Fly By Night proved her metier as a top-notch sprinter, scoring a career high when defeating male rivals in the final running of the Gr1 Mercury Sprint at the now defunct Clairwood racetrack, a race her sire had won in the millennium year. She also came within a shorthead of handing the brilliant Via Africa a rare defeat in the Gr1 SA Fillies Sprint at Scottsville.

Because his grandad Jet Master was watching with Ben Jonsson and my late husband Henry, all in heaven, shouting him home.

The Devine’s beloved champion continues to add to the history of this hallowed race. Not only did he sire the Met winners Pocket Power (3 times), River Jetez and Past Master, he is the broodmare sire of dual victor Rainbow Bridge as well as Double Superlative and last year’s winner Jet Dark, both of whom carried the Jonsson silks. Incidentally, Nick has an interesting connection to Jet Master: he was bred by Hugh Jonsson, a brother of Nick’s late father Ben! No wonder a clearly elated breeder Patricia Devine remarked in the post-race interviews: “What a wonderful horse and a training feat of 24 | 31 JANUARY 2024

note. And do you know what I do believe made it possible? Because his grandad Jet Master was watching with Ben Jonsson and my late husband Henry, all in heaven, shouting him home.”

The full sisters are out of the Model Man mare Fly The Wind whilst grandam Brave The Wind is an own sister to Newmarket Guineas winner and Gr2 Dingaans third Cardinal Sin. The female line traces to English import Mistress Gwynn, a daughter of the Hyperion horse His Highness.

A three-time winner in Britain, Mistress Gwynn added another nine sprint wins to her tally in South Africa before retiring to Noreen Stud where she produced six winners from as many foals. Double Superlative descends from her daughter Naughty Nell and it is fascinating to note that she was by the Middle Park winner Masham, whose half-brother, the Coronation Cup winner Beau Sabreur, was sired by His Highness. The final word goes to Justin Snaith though: “He’s the most beautiful looking horse. This is what we can breed. We might not have the biggest stud farms or the best stallions and mares, but this is what we produce, which is just so typical of South Africa.”


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Craig Zackey has the consistent Dyce in full control | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

DRAMA – THEN DYCE There was drama at the start of the R1,5 million World Pool Gr1 Cape Flying Championship when the favourite Isivunguvungu was withdrawn on Vet’s advice after rushing the gate on loading and injuring his right shoulder in the process. The withdrawal was a terrible turn of bad luck for the Peter Muscutt team and the Hollywood Syndicate, after an eight-month build-up for the dual Gr1 winner. But visiting trainer Lucky Houdalakis and his connections will take the trophy and the cheque with both hands after the supremely consistent Joburg Merchants winner Dyce finished powerfully to register his first Gr1 success.

With new favourite Thunderstruck (18-10) showing the way under Piere Strydom, it was the high-riding Craig Zackey who celebrated his third winner of a dream afternoon as Dyce surged clear down the inside to beat Thunderstruck by 0,40 lengths in a time of 57,51 secs. The 10-1 Bereave was a length away in third.

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Dyce was the second away horse in three renewals to win the Cape’s premierspeed contest. Bred by Dave Shawe’s Titanium Racing, Dyce is by Cape Guineas winner William Longsword (Captain Al) out of the one-time winning Galileo mare, Beshaayir. Now a prospective sire in the making, Dyce has won 7 races with 6 places from 14 starts for stakes of R1 833 875.

Agents Orange! Winning rider Craig Zackey rode three winners on the big day | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

The Houdalakis team are ‘dicing’ with joy | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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Safari suits and mini skirts made no show in the World Sports Betting Cape Town Met Fashion Stakes last Saturday. The theme of Cape Splendour certainly brought out the colour and imagination - even if some of the outfits were a tad outlandish. Images are courtesy of Cape Racing. 32 | 31 JANUARY 2024


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PRINCESS CELEBRATES FIFTH GR1 WIN Princess Calla storms to victory under Richard Fourie | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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Reigning SA Horse Of The Year Princess Calla bounced back and showed that pace makes the race when she stormed up the outside to win the R1 million City Of Cape Town Gr1 Majorca Stakes at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on WSB Cape Town Met day.

as Princess Calla (15-10) was being unleashed by Fourie.

The powerhouse combination of Betway trainer Sean Tarry and Winning Form jockey Richard Fourie returned with purpose as the magnificent Maine Chance bred daughter of Flower Alley showed her mettle when recording her fifth Gr1 success – achieved from 1200m to 1800m across all of our major racing centres – and her twelfth win overall from 27 starts.

Double Grand Slam (33-1) improved nicely to be a head away in third, with Golden Hostess (33-1) in fourth and outperforming both of her more highly regarded stablemates.

With the muddling theatrics of the Cartier Gr1 Paddock Stakes behind her, and a lesson well learnt there, Richard Fourie showed his skills and made his move up the outside in the wake of the long-striding Red Palace. At the 300m the gallant and versatile Rascova (40-1) continued to bowl along down the inside

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At the line there was 3,25 lengths between the magic mare and her field as she clocked 98,20 secs for the mile.

The forward galloping Red Palace faded out to a 5,35 length fifth, with recent dual Gr1 winner Beach Bomb producing no spark and falling away to ninth place and over ten lengths off the runaway winner. Princess Calla was bred by Maine Chance Farms and has now won 12 of 27 starts with 13 places for earnings of R5 432 176.

Power pair! Trainer Sean Tarry and Richard Fourie have enjoyed great success | Credit: Candiese Lenferna v

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“I have trained many Gr.1 winners and several champions, but never one with this level of constitution or versatility” – Sean Tarry Princess Calla (Richard Fourie) is led in by the Tarry team after her fifth Gr1 success | Credit: Wayne Marks

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Fifth Fastest Time In 77 Renewals Of Majorca!


Richard Fourie it was yet another highlight in the career of a filly who has progressed to become one of the great racemares of South African racing history.

Robin Bruss writes that unusually for Princess Calla, her rider Richard Fourie elected to sit back well off the pace in 8th spot until turning for home and then came to the wide outside to make her sustained run.

In summary, Princess Calla has so far made 27 starts for 12 wins from 1000m to 1800m and 13 places. She has won 11 Graded Stakes races of which five are Grade 1. Only twice she didn’t make the first four – one was when she ran 5th in the Met (Gr.1) at 2000m as a 3 year old filly, and the other when 5th in the blanket finish in the Cape Flying Championship (Gr.1) at 1000m, beaten just over a length.

rincess Calla’s dominant win in the Majorca S. (Gr.1) over 1600m on Saturday was a class act which shone as the best performance on a stellar card of big races at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth.

She barreled past the field of high class fillies to win going away full of running by 3 widening lengths to record her 5th Grade 1 win. Her time was the fifth fastest in 77 runnings of the race and she was unextended. For owner Mario Ferreira, racing manager Des Goncalves, trainer Sean Tarry and jockey

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She has never failed to earn a cheque in 27 starts – and that’s about as impeccable level of consistency as any racehorse could ever have. There are many remarkable things to note about Princess Calla’s admirable racing career.


Dr Andreas Jacobs of Maine Chance Farms collects his Grade 1 trophy for Princess Calla | Credit: Wayne Marks

Apart from her debut win, almost all her races have been in graded stakes events, and she has never faltered: she has won or placed in 14 Grade 1 events. One of the reasons she has been able to do this is her amazing versatility in the range of distances in Grade 1 company – from 1000m to 2000m. many of them against colts, and this aptitude opened up the whole programme for her connections to choose from. “Princess Calla has been a pleasure to train” says Sean Tarry “and I think what sets her apart from other champions I have had, is her versatility over a many different distances and adaptability to the pace they are run at. She also has an incredible constitution and has remained at the top a very long time” “She never leaves an oat, she is very sound and durable and a very straight forward mare to train. She has such a huge girth and great depth to her, she must have amazing heart and lungs. “When she works in the mornings, she gives everything, and I find that I have to slow her

down so that she doesn’t overdo it. This is the reason why I put earmuffs on her, and why she goes to the start in the earmuffs on racedays. Its not about her temperament, it’s about her willingness to give.” It’s rare when a horse – of either sex – can succeed against the best specialist sprinters and yet extend that speed to 1600m., 1800m and even 2000m. This is the domain of the Great Horse, the one that is hardest to breed because it brings about an unusual combination of traits that are hard to predict and to preserve in determining matings: how to extend stamina, but also preserve great speed. Princess Calla has another unusual attribute – during her career she has had four different trainers in different racing centres, and she has cross crossed the country many times. She began with Dennis Bosch in KwazuluNatal, who ran her on the polytrack on her debut and she skated home by 3 lengths. In her second start, she ran 3rd in the two year old fillies Championship, the Thekwini Fillies S. (Gr.1) over 1600m at odds of 12/1. 31 JANUARY 2024 | 49


Moved to Cape Town for the Summer season, she went to Adam Marcus and he won the WC Fillies Championship (Gr.2) over 1400m., ran 2nd in the Cape Fillies Guineas (Gr.1), 3rd in the Paddock S. (Gr.1) 1800m against older mares and in Durban, she won the Umzimkhulu S. (Gr.3) 1400m and then three frustrating narrow defeats in Gr.1s from 1600m to 2000m. Back in Cape Town, Adam won the Prix du Cap (Gr.3) with her over 1400m. Back in Johannesburg, Princess Calla went to new trainer Andrew and Ashley Fortune to record her first Grade 1 win in the Empress Club Stakes WFA over 1600m., her first run at altitude. She was given a break and then joined Sean Tarry, who was to try something completely new. Princess Calla had proven herself a high class individual with each of her trainers, all

of whom could be satisfied with their success rate, but then with Sean Tarry, the direction and tempo changed. He dropped her from middle distances to pure sprints, and the transformation began. “When I looked up her form, I saw four seconds in Gr.1 races in narrow defeats when she just couldn’t get her nose to the wire to finish it off. She was showing tons of speed at home and I thought that in the sprints we could temper her willingness in the early speed and then she would run on strongly to the line.” Her first start for Sean was in the 1000m Southern Cross (Gr.2) and Princess Calla came from last to rocket past a big field an win in 58,3 sec. Then came the Sceptre S. (Gr.2) over 1200m., the top race for sprinting fillies in Cape Town. It was a repeat performance.

Flashback - Princess Calla as a yearling | Credit: Jeremy Nelson

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Flashback to January 2016 - Glen Kotzen’s Princess Royal wins the Sceptre Stakes | Credit: Supplied

Back in Johannesburg and she gave weight and a thrashing to the colts including Gr.1 Winner Thunderstruck in the Tommy Hotspur S. (Gr.2) 1100m in 66,36 secs., near record time. It was a totally dominant run and even though a raised temperature and interrupted prep intervened, she started hot favourite for the Computaform Sprint (WFA) Gr.1 over the minimum 1000m. She wasn’t 100% and finished a creditable third in 56.4 secs. Sean realized something else : she seemed to thrive when trained at altitude. So she was trained in Johannesburg to raid into coastal KZN for the winter championship races and she dazzled in a trio of Gr.1 races to the thrill of racing fans – and earn her Horse of the Year title.

1800m and defeat the best colts in the country in Champion S. (Gr.1). They were all there, except for Charles Dickens, who did not enter. Princess Calla won with authority and ease. The Equus Horse of the Year 2023 title became hers. Owner Mario Fereirra says “it has been an honour to own such a special filly. From choosing her through to winning the Horse of the Year title. A horse in a million, and I have been blessed to own her”. When asked how Princess Calla came to be chosen as yearling, he said “my wife’s name is Carla, pronounced as we do Calla, so her choice was easy!”

Her win in the 2023 SA Fillies Sprint (Gr.1) over 1200m was breathtaking in its majesty and that was followed by a tour de force in the 2023 Garden Province S. (Gr.1) over 1600m.

Princess Calla was a R600,000 purchase at the 2019 Cape Premier Yearling Sales bred by Andreas Jacobs of Maine Chance Farms, Robertson, by Flower Alley – Princess Royal (by Captain Al – Platinum Princess by Rakeen.)

She had thrashed the best fillies but to complete her rout she would have to step up to

“I bought Platinum Princess from Nicky Bartlett” said Andreas “and mated her to Victory Moon, 31 JANUARY 2024 | 51


our leading sire by Al Mufti (by Roberto). That foal was Princess Victoria, who was Champion Filly and 2 and 3 years in South Africa in 2011 & 2012, winning four Gr.1 races.” “Therefore after we lost Victory Moon, it was logical to mate Platinum Princess to another son of Al Mufti – the champion sire of 2 year olds Captain Al. That mating provided more speed and the resulting foal was named Princess Royal.” Princess Royal was a precocious juvenile trained for Andreas by Glen Kotzen and was 2nd in the Allan Robertson Fillies Championship (Gr.1) at 2 years and won the Sceptre S. (Gr.2) over 1200m at 3 – the same race her daughter Princess Calla was to win six years later. “Being physically more compact like Captain Al, and somewhat temperamental, we decided for her first mating to send her to the USA

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Travers S. Gr.1 winner Flower Alley, a horse of size and scope with good bone, and proven as the sire of a Kentucky Derby winner. I believed in him and had bought a share, plus I thought he was the perfect outcross for her and he was inbred to Mr Prospector. He had also won over 2000m., South Africa’s most important distance”. “Princess Calla was a very beautiful yearling and her price was three times the average for the Flower Alleys that year. I have not sent her dam back to Flower Alley as he is now older and I’m not a fan of using stallions after their 10th covering season” Princess Royal’s Hawaam yearling half brother to Princess Calla sold for R2 million to the bid of Justin Vermaak at the Cape Racing Sale last week, she foaled a good colt by leading sire Vercingetorix on 23 Sept 2023, and is now back in foal to Vercingetorix.


“One of the most interesting factors is that Princess Royal always produces outstanding looking progeny and invariably, when you pick the best looking foal in the paddock each year, it tends to be hers. It’s a good looking, running family,” says Andreas. Flower Alley (USA) (by Distorted Humour) stands at Mary Slack’s Wilgerbosdrift Stud and has sired 491 winners from 694 runners, a strike rate of 71% winners from runners, which indicates a high degree of soundness, and they have won 1,741 races indicating 3,5 wins per winner, so he is a prolific winner getter. He has 37 SW (5,3% compared to the breed average of 3%), amongst them five Gr.1 Winners. So these are good overall statistics. Princess Calla is the best filly he has ever sired. Dam Sire Captain Al is South Africa’s ‘chef de race’ – he sired 105 SW of 212 Stakes Wins, amongst them 25 individual Gr.1 winners. He has had 78% Winners from runners and 10,8% Stakes Winners. It’s really a world class statistic – because a good comparison is with

his own father Al Mufti (USA) who sired 54 SW (less than half of Captain Al). Captain Al imparts speed and stamina, great bone and soundness on all surfaces. He is the dominant factor in the pedigree of Princess Calla. The family was founded in New Zealand and two branches arrived in South Africa- one was Petrava (NZ) who won four Gr.1 races for Laurie Jaffee and produced Jallad, another champion sire in South Africa who sired 102 SW and 16 Gr.1 winners. The second branch was Platinum Lady (NZ) who is the 3rd dam of Princess Calla. The story of Princess Calla is one which is yet to end. She goes for the Horse Chestnut S. Gr.1 in Johannesburg “at altitude” on March 2nd and has every chance to record Gr.1 win number 6. She is likely to attain her best performances and value internationally rather than stud in South Africa give the extreme rarity of fillies able to win as many as five Gr.1 races in any major racing country. And that’s a story that still waits to unfold.

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Princess Calla – a majestic head! | Credit: Jeremy Nelson

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PLATTNER TEAM STRIKE IN STAYERS’ FEATURE In the tightest finish of the day, Corne Orffer gets Master Redoute up on the outside to beat Triple Time (Van Niekerk) on the inside, with Aragosta (Fourie, red and white) and Nebraas (Lerena) in the mix | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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In one of the most exciting finishes of the World Sports Betting Cape Town Met afternoon at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday, Corne Orffer got the Querari gelding Master Redoute up to win the R500 000 New Turf Carriers Gr3 Western Cape Stayers in the final stride. The last of the nine features on the bumper day, The top four finished within three quarters of a the 2800m contest is always a crowd pleaser as length of each other. they jump in front of the revamped stands. It was good to see dual Met winning owner Sabine Plattner on course to witness Master And the 2024 renewal will go down as producing entertainment at the start and finish, Redoute improve on his fifth behind Salvator as Orffer rode a sweetly judged race – heart Mundi in 2023. attack for stuff for the connections and backers – as Master Redoute (25-2) dug deep and got The winner is a La Plaisance home-bred son of Querari (Oasis Dream) from the twice winning his nose down to pip the 33-10 Triple Time Redoute’s Choice mare, Lady Redoute. under a determined Grant van Niekerk. Mike de Kock’s Gr1 winner Aragosta (14-10) was a neck away in third, with former champion stayer Nebraas (6-1) producing another great effort in fourth.

Now a winner of 4 races with 8 places from 21 starts, Master Redoute took his stakes total to R898 288.

Trainer Andre Nel and owner Sabine Plattner welcome Master Redoute | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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Green With Envy stamps his authority under Craig Zackey | Credit: Chase Liebenberg


Dean Kannemeyer and his longstanding supporters Khaya Stables last won the Cape Derby with Capetown Noir in 2013, and now look to have a serious SplashOut Cape Derby prospect on their hands in the shape of the talented Green With Envy. The handsome athletic specimen lumbered top weight to score an emphatic victory in Saturday’s R350 000 Schweppes Gr2 Politician Stakes at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth. With champion sires on both sides of his pedigree, and a dam who won her only start at 2400m, Green With Envy has always looked classic material and confirmed his placed efforts in the Cape Punters Cup and Hollywoodbets Cape Guineas late last year, with a scintillating show. Relaxed in last place for much of the 1800m journey, Green With Envy (5-2) made up his ground in the run for home to beat The Grey King (10-1) by 1,25 lengths in a very good time of 111,50 secs. 60 | 31 JANUARY 2024

The runner-up’s stablemate Harajuku (16-1) stayed on best of the rest 0,40 lengths further back in third. Bred and raced by Lady Christine Laidlaw’s Khaya Stables, Green With Envy, who was raised on the beautiful Varsfontein Stud, is by SA champion sire Gimmethegreenlight (More Than Ready) out of the Irish-bred unbeaten in one start over 2400m Miss Coco, a daughter of champion Galileo. Now a winner of 3 races with 3 places from 7 starts for stakes of R515 775, Green With Envy looks set to be seen next in the SplashOut Cape Derby.


A delighted owner Lady Christine Laidlaw enjoyed a great day | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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Triumphant trainer Dean Kannemeyer looking ahead to the Cape Derby! | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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KANNEMEYER EYES ANOTHER CAPE DERBY After an impressive last to first victory at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth in Saturday’s traditional Derby trial, the Schweppes Gr3 Politician Stakes, Dean Kannemeyer has confirmed that Green With Envy is on track for a tilt at the SplashOut Gr1 Cape Derby at the same venue on 24 February. The seafood and jazz festival is the traditional curtain call on the summer season of champions and is headlined by the Cape Derby and the Khaya Stables Gr2 Diadem Stakes. Dean won the Cape Derby in 2003 with the iconic Dynasty, and in 2013 with Capetown Noir, who also raced in the Khaya silks. “There was talk and suggestions at the time to supplement Capetown Noir for the Met. But I have always been of the belief that if a 3yo is good enough, let him take his chances against his own age in the classics – he after all, only gets one chance to win a Cape Guineas or a Cape Derby!” Capetown Noir had won the Cape Guineas and started a red-hot 4-10 favourite for the Derby. With a muddling early pace, things could have gone awry, but the astute Karl Neisius was in tune with the sprint for home and he duly arrived in style. When asked to compare his past winners against Green With Envy, Dean cautions against comparing horses and says he prefers to let his horses do the talking on the racetrack. “Dynasty has been a breed changer – I think he has sired four Cape Derby winners himself! You will notice that Green With Envy doesn’t go with them early and only finds his feet late. Capetown Noir on the other hand had amazing cruising speed. Green With Envy is a classy sort with a really fantastic temperament, but also has plenty of maturing to do still and is far from the finished product,” he adds as he typically conservatively observes that he thought that his charge won ‘really well’. “The going was on top at Hollywoodbets Durbanville in October. He produced a dazzling late run to win there but was then run off his feet. But our jockey Craig Zackey always said that once we get back to Hollywoodbets Kenilworth, he would show his real ability. His third in the 31 JANUARY 2024 | 65


Lady Christine Laidlaw congratulates Craig Zackey after Green With Envy’s terrific win | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

Gr2 Cape Punters Cup and then fourth in the Gr1 Hollywoodbets Cape Guineas saw him running on powerfully. The extra 200m of the Politician Stakes on Saturday was right up his alley, and he showed up admirably carrying 60kgs. His Galileo dam won at 2400m in Ireland, so the stamina is there and I am of the opinion that he will be even better over the 2000m of the Derby.” So how important is the Cape Derby to a trainer in the scheme of things? “Important! One only has to look back over the years and see how many stallions and Equus 66 | 31 JANUARY 2024

champions have won this race. I may be showing my age now, but looking back the Cape Derby has been won by stars like Colorado King, Sea Cottage, Politician, Bold Tropic and Mazarin, who history shows were some of the finest racehorses ever to grace the South African turf. Then Colorado King, Bold Tropic, and Jay Peg all went on to enjoy further success overseas. The results are there!” The Kannemeyer name has been synonymous with racing in the Cape for 75 years, and while the world has changed face in the fifty years since he first started riding work for his late Dad before


school in the early mornings, the now 63 year old Dean has never deviated far from the ‘Peekay Pearls’ – one of which is a philosophy of patience. “Time is money, but you will always be rewarded by patience with a racehorse. Pushing them inevitably comes at a cost. I am fortunate to enjoy the patronage of an owner like Lady Christine Laidlaw who always lets me do the training.” A longtime supporter of racing in South Africa, Lady Laidlaw in fact enjoyed a great day on Saturday, with her super-consistent At My Command finally putting it all together to register his fourth career victory for trainer Brett Crawford after 16 months of frustrating place cheques – albeit, often in the best of company. We asked Dean about the whereabouts of Gr1 star Gimme A Prince, who chased Charles Dickens in the Hollywoodbets Matchem Stakes and missed the Cape Flying Championship,

and his 3yo full-brother The Real Prince. We had hoped to see the latter over the past two months after an eyecatching debut effort in early December. “The top-class Gimme A Prince is lightly raced and we should have him back for the Diadem on Derby day. We had a setback with The Real Prince in Durban earlier last year, and I was happy to just get a run under his belt. He won really smartly as you observe, but I wouldn’t have pushed him into the deep end immediately. I would like to believe that he is a SA Champions Season kind of horse. Let’s see!” he smiles. • Entries for the R1,5 million SplashOut Gr1 Cape Derby close at 11h00 on Monday 12 February. • Supplementary entries close at 11h00 on Friday 16 February. • Declarations are due by 11h00 on Monday 19 February.

Craig Zackey and Thando Mdlulu with Green With Envy at the pull-up | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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Grant van Niekerk has Roman Agent in control as Winds Of Change (Muzi Yeni) chases | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

VARSFONTEIN AGENT EARNS HIS COMMISSION Justin Snaith got his 2024 World Sports Betting Cape Town Met day at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth off to a flying start when the speedy Varsfontein-bred grey Roman Agent ran out a popular winner in sunny and windless conditions, of the R600 000 World Sports Betting Listed Summer Juvenile Stakes. Described as ‘an immature horse with a beautiful stride and tons of ability’ by winning rider Grant van Niekerk, Roman Agent shook off the eyecatching attention of Azzie first-timer Winds Of Change (16-1) to win readily in a time of 65,45 secs for the 1100m. The 13-10 favourite Lion Rampart appeared to run green and missed out on the quartet. He was passed late by 75-1 Gqeberha visitor Golden Rule, who will be unbackable next time in a maiden in his hometown! Full marks to

Kelly Mitchley and her team. A Varsfontein bred son of Vercingetorix (Silvano), Roman Agent hails from the champion family of Goldkeeper daughter, Secret Of Victoria, who is 24 years old but still producing the hits. A really handsome grey, Roman Agent took his stakes to R285 000 with his second win and a place from his 3 starts.

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CHAMPAGNE FOR PAARDEBERG Raymond Danielson and Ripple Effect power clear of stablemates Siddeley (Yeni) and Hunting Trip (Van Niekerk) | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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Woodhill warriors Glen Kotzen and Raymond Danielson threw the cat amongst the Pick 6 pigeons on World Sports Betting Cape Town Met day at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday when the Erupt filly Ripple Effect stormed home to win the R200 000 Pongracz Listed Olympic Duel Stakes. With the 18-10 favourite Winter Cloud failing to produce any kind of effort, the honours were there for the taking and it was the AvontuurZenzele partnership bred Ripple Effect who swooped late in a knockout blow for punters. After two quiet runs in strong company, the former Highveld based Ripple Effect was easy to back at 50-1 and scored a landmark victory for new outfit Paardeberg Stud, near neighbours of the Kotzen family HQ in Paarl. Originally a R200 000 purchase off the National Yearling Sale, Ripple Effect won 3 races and Happy connections at the Olympic Duel lead in | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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was stakes placed from her first six starts in Gauteng before being purchased by her new owners for R850 000 as topseller off the Fortune Racing Dispersal Sale back in June 2023. It was discovered that she had a chip in the fetlock, and with two quiet Grade 2 appearances to her name, she found her prime form on Saturday and proved a great credit to the astute Glen Kotzen to beat Siddeley (20-1) going away in a time of 70,69 secs. The runner-up’s stablemate Hunting Trip (10-1) was in third, with Shantastic (8-1) running another honest race only 1,60 lengths off the winner in fourth. A daughter of Maine Chance Farms’ Dubawi stallion Erupt, the winner is out of the Quiet American mare Sea Of Calm and now boasts 4 wins with 2 places from 9 starts for stakes of R366 875.


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‘Despite the upward trajectory of its median and average prices in recent years, it’s not a sale that (yet) has the ‘Select’ reputation of either CPYS or NYS. The prices will be a long way short of the stellar outcome of January’s CPYS’

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At 3.00 am my sleep is interrupted by the clatter of an empty trailer and the roaring engine of a tractor. There are about half a dozen tractors and trailers ferrying grapes from vineyard to cellar, keeping up their relay throughout the night, until the morning sun gets too hot. The noise varies; when a laden trailer passes, there is a different pitch to the sound of the tractor’s engine. Normandy’s Oscar Foulkes writes that the same limestone that is beneficial to the production of top-quality wine is an important contributor to the raising of top-class racehorses. For over 150 years, my family has been doing both on contiguous farms close to Ashton. The classification of racehorses is based upon their finest performances in the most competitive of racing events. The winning post is an objective arbiter that brooks no debate. Conversely, for wine, any kind of ranking is

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entirely subjective, although the Bordeaux Classification of 1855 attempted some kind of objectivity by basing the ranking on reputation and price. Hence, we have the famous First Growths, Chateaux Lafite, Latour, Margaux, Haut-Brion and Mouton-Rothschild. These are the premier cru (and what a crew they are). The Classification (or cru classé) went as far as second, third, fourth and fifth growths. Over the course of the roughly 170 years since the original classification, there has been a great amount of fluidity in the quality of wine produced, regardless of the original ranking. Super Seconds are not First Growths, but “consistently deliver wines on par, or sometimes better, than these top names while


still coming with lower price tags”. To be clear, these aren’t necessarily Second Growths or even the second wines of top chateaux. It is in the spirit of the Super Seconds designation that we look forward to the BSA Cape Yearling Sale. Despite the upward trajectory of its median and average prices in recent years, it’s not a sale that (yet) has the ‘Select’ reputation of either CPYS or NYS. The prices will be a long way short of the stellar outcome of January’s CPYS. In short, it’s the ideal auction to stock up on prospects for the growing opportunities open to racehorses in the Cape (and further afield). It’s at a previous version of the same sale that we sold the future Champion (and Championproducer), Mother Russia. Incidentally, in the same draft as Mother Russia, we had the Grade One SA Fillies’ Sprint winner, Captain’s Gal. On a quick glance through the other horses on the sale that year, Big City Life pops up as a notable graduate. Super Seconds indeed. There is a further interesting parallel with the Bordeaux wine market. Each year, in March, the previous year’s wines are offered for sale with delivery in the future, once they have been bottled and labelled. These En Primeur wines are still in barrel, and like yearling Thoroughbreds, will continue to develop. While one has a glimpse at future promise, what is currently being offered is not the finished article. Great rewards await the judges who can

see what others cannot. We’ve had to withdraw one of our colts, and excepting the one ‘as agent’ filly, we have 12 yearlings on offer, which happens to be the number of bottles in an old-school case of wine. Continuing our commitment to sell all our yearlings in the Cape, we would have offered almost our entire crop by the end of February.

Two of our forthcoming draft are out of daughters of Nordic Vine, from a family with numerous names that have wine references, beginning with her granddam, Sauterne. Of course, Sauternes (note the minor misspelling of the mare’s name) is the part of Bordeaux famous for its sweet wines. Top of this classification is Chateau Yquem. Appropriately, Yquem was the name chosen for the Fillies Guineas-winning full-sister to Nordic Vine’s dam. We believe that we have a … um … vintage crop for the Cape Yearling Sale and look forward to showing them to you from 23 February.

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The retired jockeys get together at Harold Crawford’s yard for a braai and a beer every year. How many do you recognise? Email editor@sportingpost.co.za with your names, for an honourable mention next week!

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Grant van Niekerk has Rapidash flying as the tactically ridden Coastal Commander (Bernard Fayd’herbe on outside) comes under pressure | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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Justin Snaith struck gold at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth for the second year running in South Africa’s richest race when he made it two from two in the R7,5 million Cape Racing Gold Rush, after Grant van Niekerk steered the Danon Platina gelding Rapidash to a thrilling victory. The mile contest, broadly based on The Everest, is restricted to eligible graduates of the 2022 CTS Cape Yearling Sale. Berths are owned by ‘prospectors’, who purchase their starting rights for R400 000 each. Snaith won the inaugural running with Royal Aussie who beat Dave The King (then with Vaughan Marshall), and the same two yards dominated the show on Saturday with Rapidash beating his draw and a gallant effort by the innovatively ridden Coastal Commander, who just failed to sustain the move to grab the outside track. Grant van Niekerk rode a superb race on Rapidash (10-1), whose run was timed perfectly as he held off the 100-1 Coastal Commander by 0,20 lengths in a time of 99,27 secs.

not disgraced in third, where he earned R600 000 for his efforts. Just Be Lekker did some of the donkey work, and held on for fourth, while the fancied Infrared earned the final cheque of R400 000 in fifth. Raced by Nic Jonsson and first-time owner Doug Ross, Rapidash was bred by Kilimanjaro Bloodstock, and is a son of Danon Platina (Deep Impact) out of the one-time winning War Pass mare, My Lovely. Now a winner of 2 races with 4 places from 7 starts for stakes of R5 148 575, Rapidash was not winning out of turn and proved a serious return on investment on his purchase price of R350 000.

The luckless Tail Of The Comet (33-10) finished with a rattle after being interfered with, and was

Grant van Niekerk points out his big cheque to Brandon Bailey | Credit: Chase Liebenberg

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BALLERINA DOES A 100-1 BREAKDANCE Gauteng trainer Candice Dawson produced the first surprise of World Sports Betting Cape Town Met day at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday when the 100-1 Maine Chance bred Little Ballerina produced the goods under Gareth Wright to win the R1 250 000 CRS Cape Slipper.

Gareth Wright is all smiles as Candice Dawson (back to camera) and owner Lindsay Ralphs look on | Credit: Chase Liebenberg 90 | 31 JANUARY 2024


With an unspectacular and unfancied debut effort under the belt on Hollywoodbets Cape Guineas day last month, there wasn’t much to suggest that the daughter of Vercingetorix would be vying for top honours. But Gareth Wright had other ideas and he sent Little Ballerina to the lead inside the distance, and despite a bit of rein panic by her rider late, the smart filly won the 1200m contest restricted to eligible graduates of the 2023 CRS Cape Premier Yearling Sale.

come a bit early, but that a great ride and a gutsy effort had produced the welcome surprise. A R300 000 Cape Premier Yearling Sale buy, the winner now takes her stakes bank to R781 250 with her first win from 2 starts. Raced by Ralphs Racing (Pty) Ltd (Nom: Miss K Ralphs) & Larry Nestadt, the winner was bred by Maine Chance Farms, the Doyle family, and Silver Ripples (Pty) Ltd.

Little Ballerina went on strongly in a time of 72,83 secs to beat Vaughan Marshall’s Talk To The Master by three quarters of a length.

Little Ballerina is by Maine Chance superstar Vercingetorix (Silvano) out of the Ireland placed Fastnet Rock mare, Little Fastnet.

The 18-10 favourite Handsome Prince was beaten a further length into third.

The Cape Slipper stake for 2025 has been increased to R1,5 million.

Trainer Candice Dawson, who also banked the R50 000 RaceCape Cape Raiders incentive cheque, said that she felt that the race had

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Lot 37 – the topseller Clair De Lune | Credit: Candiese Lenferna

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The 14th renewal of the Cape Yearling Sale, powered by Tattersalls, and held on Thursday afternoon for the second year under the auspices of Cape Racing Sales, produced the ‘bigger and better’ promised in 2023 – and much more – with record results underscoring the sparkling renaissance of the industry down South. The concept of an inner-city racehorse sale in one of the world’s most beautiful locations was a winner from inception, and has proven a hit with local and international buyers. The association with the 258 year old Tattersalls, Europe’s leading bloodstock auctioneers, who sell over 10 000 horses every year, has also added impetus on the back of the reborn thoroughbred that is Cape Racing. Cape Racing Chairman Greg Bortz succinctly summed it up, suggesting that ‘money is not location specific’, and that the quality of the horse on offer, coupled with the timing of the sale in the height of the Cape season in Met

week, contributed to the popularity. “It was a super strong sale that was well attended, including by some great international buyers. The money will find the quality horses and with some new innovations in the pipeline, which will strengthen Cape Racing Sales even further, we can feel very excited about the future,” he told the Sporting Post. While Cape Town sizzled in the summer heat, the temperatures were also soaring in the sales ring, with the 119 lots achieving an aggregate of R64 895 000 (up 44,77% on 2023), at an average of R545 336 (up 22,88% on 2023) and a median of R400 000, an increase of 33,33% on last year.

Basie and Suzette Viljoen enjoying their premier debut | Credit: Wayne Marks

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Gareth van Zyl – on the lookout for his next champion | Credit: Wayne Marks

Topseller was Clair De Lune (#37) who was offered by Drakenstein as agent, and signed for by Jonathan Snaith for R3,2 million on behalf of new buyers, Swiss national Rolf Theiler, and his South African wife Gloria, who are associates of Drakenstein’s Gaynor Rupert, and hail from the world of showjumping.

While international regular supporters Fiona Carmichael and Amanda Skiffington were active, an interesting aspect of the sale is the age profile of the top three locally based purchasers, with Justin Vermaak the leading buyer on aggregate, his 16 purchases totalling R12 400 000 at an average of R775 000.

The beautiful athlete is a full-sister to 2023 Gr1 HF Oppenheimer Horse Chestnut Stakes winner Trip Of Fortune.

“We formed a few partnerships, one fourway between Greg Bortz, Mukund Gujadhur, Laurence Wernars and Rikesh Sewgoolam, and another three-way, through which we bought some lovely youngsters destined for a variety of trainers, including Brett Crawford, Justin Snaith, Adam and Michael Azzie, and Johan Janse van Vuuren. So the idea is that they will, depending on their precocity, start in the Cape and be aimed at the Cape Racing Sales Slipper on Met day,” said Vermaak, who added that he felt that the Hawwaam – Princess Victoria colt (#63) ‘was as good a physical specimen as one would find anywhere’.

Leading sire was Varsfontein Stud’s champion Gimmethegreenlight, who recently celebrated his 60th individual stakes winner. The son of More Than Ready achieved an aggregate of R11 875 00 with his 13 lots achieving an average of R913 462. Breeders of reigning SA Horse Of The Year Princess Calla, Maine Chance Farms was the leading vendor, their 14 flagbearers averaging R798 214 for an aggregate of R11 175 000.

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Gaynor Rupert and the Drakenstein team | Credit: Wayne Marks

“He will be trained by Johan Janse van Vuuren and was the standout horse of the sale for me. He comes from a great family, he is a brother to Princess Calla, and ticks all the boxes. I thought we bought a really great bunch of horses and it’s terrific to see the power of partnerships in action,” Vermaak told the Sporting Post. Jonathan Snaith led the buyer averages, with his nine signings – including the topseller – costing R7 025 000, at an average of R780 556. “With all the exciting changes at Cape Racing we are seeing new owners enter the sport, which hasn’t been the trend for many a year. These are hugely exciting times for racing indeed, and for breeders, who will reap the rewards,” he told the Sporting Post. Leading international breeders Ridgemont, who were again in the top echelon of vendors at the sale, paid R2 million for the smashing unnamed Gimmethegreenlight filly (#110) from the champion juvenile All Is Secret. 98 | 31 JANUARY 2024

This is a classic South African family and the purchase is clearly a move to maintain the upgrade of their high-class and powerful broodmare band.



Carl de Vos and Gavin Pickford discuss the action | Credit: Wayne Marks

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Double Superlative was adjusted to 124 from 118 after landing the Gr1 World Sports Betting Cape Town Met run over 2000m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday. The Handicappers were unanimous in choosing the runner-up Rascallion as the line horse here and he remains on a rating of 122.

Third placed Without Question was raised to 120 from 117 while 5th placed Sugar Mountain was increased to 115 from 109. Sugar Mountain finished 3.25 lengths or 7 points behind the 122 rated Rascallion at

level weights hence his adjustment to 115.

Anfields Rocket received a 2 point drop from 117 to 115 while Waterberry Lane and Al Muthana received drops of 1 point each, from 113 to 112 and 126 to 125 respectively. World Pool Cape Flying Championship (WFA) (Gr1) Top rated Dyce remains unchanged on a rating of 130 after he captured the Gr1 World Pool Cape Flying Championship over 1000m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday.

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Here it was the runner-up Thunderstruck who was deemed to make for the best line horse, leaving him unchanged on a mark of 124. In rating the race this way 3rd placed Bereave and 4th placed Rio Querari also run to their ratings of 122 and 118 respectively, effectively making them line horses as well. Mr Cobbs, who was rated to run 2nd last on official pre-ratings, was only given a partial adjustment to 108 from 103 for his performance in 5th position. Mufasa and Captain Arrow were also given partial adjustments, from 103 to 107 and 98 to 102 respectively. The Handicappers did not take the above performances literally and considered the overall profiles of the unplaced runners when making these adjustments. We’re Jamming was dropped to 110 from 114 after failing to confirm his Grade 3 Champagne Stakes run in his 3 subsequent performances, while Bartholdi was given a 2 point drop from 119 to 117.

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City Of Cape Town Majorca Stakes (WFA) (Gr1) Top rated Princess Calla remains unchanged on a rating of 127 after easily accounting for her rivals in the Gr1 City Of Cape Town Majorca Stake over 1600m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday. The Handicappers were of the view that 5th placed Red Palace would not have run below her official rating of 111 and used her to rate the Majorca. The Handicappers felt that Princess Calla was rated to win this event easily and did not have to produce her career best effort to win this event. Only two fillies received increases to their ratings here, Rascova was adjusted to 115 from 110. Double Grand Slam was also adjusted to 115 from her pre-rating of 104 after finishing together with Rascove at the line on level weight terms.


Golden Hostess was dropped to 115 from 117 as she has failed to run to a 117 in her last 4 starts. The only other filly to receive a drop was Gimme A Shot who also dropped 2 points from 108 to 106. New Turf Carriers Western Cape Stayers (Gr3) Master Redoute had his rating increased to 113 from 102 after winning the Gr3 New Turf Carriers Western Cape Stayers over 2800m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday. Master Redoute was not favourably treated at these weight terms on his pre-rating of 102 and had to run at level weights with Aragosta rated 118 and Nebraas rated 112. It was in fact Nebraas who was deemed to be the most suitable line horse in this event and his rating remains on 112. 2nd placed Triple Time was adjusted from 108 to 112 while One Way Traffic received a 2 points adjustment from 106 to 108. The only other horse to receive an increase in this event was Fight Song who was given a marginal adjustment of 4 points from 90 to 94 despite running to considerably higher. The Handicappers were not convinced that this horse would be able to sustain his literal achievement here given his overall ratings profile and that this higher achievement could well be attributed to the compact nature of the finish to this race and the fact that he ran at unfavourable weight terms. Three horses received a rating’s drop. Flower Of Saigon was down to 104 from 105, Decorated dropped from 100 to 96, and lastly Thefutureisbright was dropped from 98 to 96. Schweppes Politician Stake (Gr3) The well weighted Green With Envy remained on a rating of 110 after winning the Gr3 Schweppes Politician Stakes over 1800m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday.

It was Green With Envy who was considered to make for the most suitable line horse here and his rating remains unchanged on 110. The runner up Grey King, who received 5.5kg weight from Green With Envy and finished 1.25 lengths behind was accordingly adjusted to 96 from 87. Harajuku was adjusted to a rating of 101 from 96 and is now rated higher than the runner up The Grey King due to Harajuku carrying 2.5kg more weight and finishing in close proximity to the runner up. Get Impressed and Blue Bay were each given increases of 2 points from 90 to 92 and 84 to 86 respectively. The following horses were given drops to their ratings, King Pelles was dropped to 87 from 93, Except Temptation was dropped from 89 to 86 and JUST VAR dropped to 82 from 85. Pongracz Olympic Duel Stakes (Listed) Ripple Effect saw her rating increased to 107 from 104 after winning the Listed Pongracz Olympic Duel Stakes over 1200m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday. Miss Marguerite was deemed to make for the most suitable line horse here and her rating remains unchanged on a mark of 99. The runner up Siddeley was only adjusted to a rating of 95 from 92 despite performing to a higher level, due to the specific race conditions that place a maximum adjustment of 3 points for placed horses in this event. Four horses received drops to their ratings in this field, Blue Holly was dropped to 98 from 100, Oni San dropped from 98 to 97, Distinction dropped to 91 from 92 and Distant Winter dropped to 106 from 108. Dr Richard Maponya Handicap (Listed) formerly Drum Star Handicap

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Litigation had his rating increased from 109 to 111 after narrowly winning The Dr Richard Maponya Handicap (Listed) over 1800m at Turffontein on Sunday. The Handicappers were of the opinion that all of 2nd Emirate Gina, 3rd Crimson King and 4th Meridius made for suitable line horses, they remained unchanged on ratings of 105,103 and 110 respectively. There were no other rating increases. The following horses were dropped in the ratings. Shoemaker dropped from 109 to 108, both Whafeef and Star Coin were dropped to 101 from 103. Tab Spook Express Stakes (Listed) Explosive Bond was adjusted to 90 from 84 after winning the Listed Tab Spook Express Stakes over 2400m at Turffontein on Sunday.

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Red Maple was deemed to make for the most suitable line horse when rating this event and her rating remains unchanged on a mark of 93. The specific race conditions of this event prohibits the Handicappers from raising the winner by more than 6 points and the placed horses by more than 3 points. Accordingly, the winner had to be capped to a rating of 90 despite performing to a higher level. 2nd placed Bonete was also capped to an adjustment of 96 despite performing to a slightly higher level. The following runners received ratings’ drops. Special Charm is down to 82 from 83, Namaqua Blossom drops from 80 to 79 and Avoontoast is down from 72 to 70. • Media release by NHA on Tuesday 30 January 2024


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Gavin Lerena gets Litigation (inside) home ahead of Emirate Gina (Khumalo in hooped cap) and Crimson King (Matsunyane in red cap), in a tight call | Credit: JC Photos

LERENA JUDGES IT PERFECTLY ON LITIGATION An enigmatic talent that promised plenty early on but failed to deliver at the top level, the Greys Inn gelding Litigation showed his appreciation of the Turffontein 1800m when benefitting from a top-drawer ride by Gavin Lerena to win the R225 000 Listed Dr Richard Maponya Handicap on Sunday

In the firing line for much of the journey, Litigation, who was gelded after his KZN campaign last year, plugged on resolutely under a simply superb ride by Lerena as the pack closed in from all sides.

when winning the 2022 TAB4Racing Gr3 Victory Moon Stakes, interestingly, over Sunday’s track and trip! Bred by Avontuur, Litigation is a son of Durban July winner Greys Inn (Zabeel) out of the thrice winning Jet Master mare, Jeter.

But the Avontuur bred was not lying down, and in an exciting finish he went one better than his second cheque in the same race last year when run as the Europa Point Drum Star Handicap in March, when securing a desperately close victory.

Raced by Laurence and Jaryd Wernars, Harry Wilson and Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh, Litigation was sold privately during the dark days of the covid-19 reshuffle of the 2020 National Yearling Sale in a transaction brokered by Justin Vermaak and took his earnings on Sunday to R981 875.

Litigation (10-1) held on by a nose in a time of 112,87 secs to beat Emirate Gina (10-1) and Crimson King (25-1) in a blanket finish. Litigation achieved a career peak success 106 | 31 JANUARY 2024

Litigation has now won 7 races with 8 places from 29 starts and could yet come into his own in the latter part of his 5yo term.


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The Ascot Stud-bred Fire Away filly Explosive Bond made her stakes debut a winning one when she powered home under her galloping weight to win the R200 000 Listed Spook Express Stakes at Turffontein on Saturday. Philasande Mxoli has Explosive Bond in command | Credit: JC Photos 31 JANUARY 2024 | 109


Coming in off an eyecatching 5,25 length victory at her last start, the progressive young stayer stalked her pacesetting stable companion Special Charm for much of the 2400m trip before stepping on the gas at the 350m as she made her older rivals carry their weight. The Paul Matchett charge never looked in danger of defeat and stayed on well at 10-1 under Philasande Mxoli to beat Bonete (9-2) by 1,50 lengths in a time of 155,47 secs. The runner-up’s stablemate Red Maple (6-1) made good ground from some way off but was well beaten a further 3,25 lengths away in third, with the Matchett team rounding off the quartet

as Special Charm (25-1) weakened late into fourth. The winner was purchased for what now looks to be a bargain R50 000 by Vermaak Equine off the 2022 BSA KZN Yearling. Bred by Ascot Stud, she is by War Front stallion Fire Away out of the one-time winning Trippi mare, Liwa. Raced by Jace Chetty, Yagan Nair and Trevelen Pillay, Explosive Bond has won 3 races with 5 places from 13 starts for stakes of R262 313. With further improvement, she looks potential SA Oaks material on this performance.

ON FIRE! Wilgerbosdrift’s promising young stallion Fire Away enjoyed a weekend to remember, with his first crop daughter Luna Halo claiming Friday’s Breeders Guineas Plate at Fairview and then celebrating a double at Turffontein on Sunday. He produced his fourth first-crop stakes winner when Explosive Bond ran out a convincing winner of the Listed TAB Spook Express Stakes and is also sire of promising two-year-old Tintamarre, who ran out an impressive winner of the Gauteng Guineas Day 3 February Maiden Juvenile Plate over 1160m on Sunday. Not disgraced on debut, when finishing four lengths off the winner, the Alec Laird trained

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colt showed good improvement running out a convincing three-length winner of Sunday’s heat. Bred by Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfontein, Tintamarre is out of the Tiger Ridge mare Oyster Pond. The colt was a R450 000 buy from the 2023 National Yearling Sale. Fire Away, whose eye-catching first crop also includes graded stakes winners Egyptian Mau and My Golly Molly, has three lots on offer at the 2024 BSA Cape Yearling Sale on 25 February.


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44 DAYS TO CHELTENHAM Cheltenham – it’s not long to go now! | Credit: Supplied

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With three months to go in the Irish National Hunt season, Paul Townend is making a determined bid to catch Jack Kennedy and retain his jockey’s title. The 24-year-old Kennedy has first call at the Gordon Elliott stable and currently sits on 99 wins for the season from 399 rides. With Elliott having enjoyed a fine run of form over the last three months it looked like this highly rated young rider had an unassailable lead, but over the last fortnight that has all changed. Six-time Irish NH champion Paul Townend is literally ‘flying’ in 2024, narrowing the gap on the leader to just twelve. With 87 victories from 217 rides, including 14 from his last 20 rides over the last fortnight, Townend looks determined to defend his title. Over the weekend Townend showed his quality aboard the Willie Mullins raider Capodanno in the Gr2 Paddy Power Cotswold Chase at Cheltenham. Held up at the back of the field in a strongly run race, Capodanno was given time to recover from a slow jump early on before making up ground on his rivals in the final third, to lead two out. He stayed on well under a strong ride to win going away from pacemaker, The Real Whacker with favourite Stay Away Fay in third. “I thought Paul was very good tactically on Capodanno,” Mullins stated post-race.

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Backed into 7/2 second favourite on Saturday morning from an opening call of 8/1, the John McManus owned eight-year-old will now head for the Festival in April. Exciting young hurdler Lossiemouth provided Townend and Willie Mullins with a feature double when easily accounting for the smart mare Love Envoi in the Unibet Hurdle. Again, Townend gave his mount a chance and held her up in rear for much of the contest. When asked to race from three out, she made rapid headway to lead at the last, before running out a near 10-length winner. The Group 2 victory was so professional and impressive, that you have to think Townend might well pick to ride her over State Man if she were aimed at the Champion Hurdle. “Lossiemouth has improved nicely and did it well,” reported Mullins. “We took a chance and waited with her this season, and it seems to have done her good.” There are just 44 days to go to Cheltenham!


Paul Townend – chasing the championship Credit: Supplied

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South African bred and raced champions made their presence felt in major racing events and award ceremonies during the past week. Newly crowned Eclipse Champion Just F Y I wins the 2023 Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf | Credit: Coolmore

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Rock Opera’s son Royal Meeting in action – he has made a bright start to his stud career | Credit: Godolphin

Sensational stallion Justify, who is inbred to South African champion Hawaii, came up with his first US champion when his daughter Just F Y I was crowned Eclipse Champion 2-Year-Old filly for 2023 at the Eclipse Awards ceremony held at Palm Beach last Thursday. Yet another success for the former US Triple Crown winner came when the Justify sired Alpha Bella won the Gr3 La Prevoyante Stakes presented by Ketel One Espresso Martini at Gulfstream Park on Saturday. Alpha Bella is the 26th stakes winner for Justify, a son of the phenomenal Scat Daddy. The latter, whose grandsire Hennessy is out of the Hawaii mare Island Kitty, is also the sire of 118 | 31 JANUARY 2024

2017 Gr1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf winner Mendelssohn -whose son Mendelssohn Bay won the Gr3 UAE 2000 Guineas at Meydan on Friday. South African bloodlines have also been to the fore in Australia recently, with French Group One winner Royal Meeting (Invincible Spirit), whose dam was a champion in South Africa, making a very bright start to his stud career. Royal Meeting, who shares his sire with the likes of I Am Invincible, Kingman and exciting young South African sire Digital Age among others, came up with his first winner and first stakes winner when his first crop daughter Hayasugi won the Gr3 Sportsbet Blue Diamond Preview at Caulfield on Friday.


Hayasugi was just the fourth runner for Royal Meeting up until then, and Royal Meeting has subsequently climbed to seventh on Australia’s Leading 1st Season Sires premiership for 20232024. Royal Meeting is out of South African bred champion Rock Opera (Lecture) –South Africa’s Champion 2YO Filly of 2005. A full-sister to Gr2 The Nursery winner Hit Song and the Gr1 placed dam of dual South African Gr1 winner Van Halen, Rock Opera (whose halfsister Royal Drummer produced Gr1 winning sprinter Gulf Storm, Gr3 winner Seattle Singer and East Cape star Global Drummer) won all four starts at two with her two-year-old campaign ending in a two length defeat of outstanding broodmare Secret Of Victoria (dam of four stakes winners including Saturday’s Listed World Sports Betting Summer Juvenile Stakes winner Roman Agent) in the Gr1 Allan Robertson Fillies

Championship. Royal Meeting, like his dam, was a Gr1 winner at two, winning the Gr1 Criterium International of 2018. In landing the Criterium International, Royal Meeting accounted for the following year’s Gr1 Qipco 1000 Guineas/Gr1 Tattersalls Irish 1000 Guineas Hermosa (whose full-brother The United States stands at Moutonshoek). While he failed to win again, Royal Meeting did manage to finish third, behind dual Australian Gr1 winner Streets Of Avalon (Magnus), in the 2019 Gr3 Ladbrokes Moonga Stakes. A half-brother to the durable Heavy Metal (whose 15 wins included the 2018 Gr2 Godolphin Mile), Royal Meeting is a direct descendant of Polly Mahal (Arabian Night II), whose numerous highclass descendants also include Gr1 winners Along Came Polly, Indira, Marie Galante and Young Rake.

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Derek Leung drives Victor The Winner to his maiden Grade 1 victory | Credit: HKJC

VICTOR’S A WINNER! Victor The Winner could embark on an ambitious overseas campaign after the lightly-raced speedster upstaged decorated opposition, including Lucky Sweynesse and Wellington, with convincing victory in the HK$13 million Gr1 Centenary Sprint Cup at Sha Tin on Sunday. Jumping from barrier 10, the 37/1 chance forged straight to the lead for Derek Leung and strode virtually unchallenged through a leisurely first 400m of the race, clocking 24.30s, before accelerating from the home turn and

building an unassailable lead. Clocking 22.18s for the final 400m, Victor The Winner prevailed by a length and three-quarters from Lucky With You, while Wellington was a further half length away in third place. Lucky Sweynesse, who ambled from the gates and was trapped behind a wall of runners to be 11th with 400m left to run, produced the fastest final sectional of 21.98s but was never a winning chance. “He (Lucky Sweynesse) didn’t jump slow, but he couldn’t get into stride and then when the horses got in front of him and backed the 31 JANUARY 2024 | 121


speed right off, that made it impossible from where we were,” jockey Zac Purton said. “So, he just lost it in the first part of the race.”

Purton leads the Hong Kong jockeys’ championships with 61 wins – 21 clear of Karis Teetan (40) and Hugh Bowman (30).

It was a rare rebuttal for Purton on Sunday, when the Australian dominated the undercard with six winners – Nicholson Returns, Ace Victory, Beato, Gorgeous Win, Sweet Encounter and Green N White – but it was unquestionably Leung’s time to shine as the homegrown talent tasted Group 1 success for the first time since Beauty Generation’s 2017 G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Mile (1600m) victory.

The Australian’s spree began with David Hall’s Nicholson Returns in the Class 4 Fu Tai Handicap (2000m) before he sealed an early double when Benno Yung’s Ace Victory crossed from barrier 12 to find the rail in the first section of the Class 4 On Ting Handicap (1200m).

“It feels great. Thank you for the opportunity from the owner and the trainer. We draw an outside gate, but we flew out of the gate, so (we) took advantage and just went forward – he was quite relaxed after that and at the 500m, I knew he was going to kick very strong. Very lucky, it was a win,” Leung said. Asked if he was surprised to have led as easily, Leung said: “Very lucky. It could not be better.” Shum, who savoured G1 W.S. Cox Plate (2040m) and G1 LONGINES Hong Kong Cup (2000m) victories with Romantic Warrior, said Leung had followed instructions perfectly. “His pace for the first (sectional) was absolutely great, he did it in 24 something (seconds). I’m very happy for the stable, the owner and Derek as well,” Shum said. “When he got a good lead, I thought he had a chance. He’s tough and very good in front.” Shum said he would consider a tilt at the G1 Takamatsunomiya Kinen (1200m) at Chukyo Racecourse, Japan on 24 March. “I entered him in Japan over 1200m, so I will see how he pulls up and then decide if I keep him in Hong Kong or send him to Japan in March,” Shum said. “I’ve considered Japan for a long time, because it’s a left-hand turn. In the morning, his left-hand turn is better than his right-hand turn, so we have to give him a chance overseas.”

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The six-time champion jockey’s domination continued with Tony Cruz’s Beato in the Class 4 Yan Oi Tong Cup Handicap (1600m) before Danny Shum-trained Gorgeous Win presented the Australian with his fourth spoil of the afternoon with a convincing win in the Class 3 Tai Hing Handicap (1200m). Purton then teamed with John Size’s Sweet Encounter in the Class 3 Yan Tin Handicap (1600m) before he closed the meeting as he started it when Ricky Yiu’s Green N White – a BMW Hong Kong Derby (2000m) nomination – crowned a fabulous day for the Australian. “It’s good (the six-timer) – it’s been a bit of a grind through the season so far. There have been a number of factors behind that but hopefully the second half of the season can be a bit stronger, like it was today,” Purton said. David Hall also completed a brace when Andrea Atzeni piloted Champion Instinct to victory in the second section of the Class 4 On Ting Handicap (1200m), Hong Kong International Sale graduate Smart Beauty broke through for his first win with success under Angus Chung in the Class 5 Lung Yat Handicap (1600m) for Tony Cruz and Chris So’s Panda Legend scored in the Class 4 Po Tin Handicap (1400m) under Keagan De Melo.


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results up to: 2024-01-31


Win Stake (R)

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Wins Win%



Other Places

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Mr M A Yeni











Mr C J Habib











Mr G J Lerena











Mr S Khumalo











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Mr S J Snaith







Mrs C L Bass-Robinson







Mr S G Tarry






Mr B J Crawford





Mr M F de Kock






Mr R D Fourie



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B.T. B.T. Total Wnrs/ Wnrs Wins Rnrs% Places Winrs Wins Stakes (R)

Drakenstein Stud (Nom: Mrs G A Rupert)











Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfontein

269 1089









Klawervlei Stud











Varsfontein Stud











Maine Chance Farms (Pty) Ltd












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B.T. B.T. Total Wnrs/ Wnrs Wins Rnrs% Places Winrs Wins Stakes (R)

Gimmethegreenlight (AUS)






















Querari (GER)











Master Of My Fate











Pathfork (USA)












See all the detailed standings - Click here 124 | 31 JANUARY 2024


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