SA jocks rule
PUBLISHED: November 18, 2014
The South African jockeys walloped the visitors at Kenilworth on Sunday, following up their three-one triumph at Turffontein on Saturday by taking all four international races.
The final points tally in the Racing It’s A Rush match was 547 to 288 and since this particular series was started in 2008 the home team has won five times out of seven.
Disappointed visiting captain James Doyle said: “I think we had bad luck with the draw. Either that or we are all very bad jockeys!”
The biggest name among the visitors may have failed to notch up his first South African success but it was not for want of trying and you could see why Sheikh Mohammed is prepared to pay so much for him as he pulled out one stop after another in an ultra-determined bid to make all on Valerio in the Betting World Handicap. But in the end his mount had no more to give and third was the best he could manage.
Piere Strydom got up close home to win this on the Brett Crawford-trained Independence and the former champion led two furlongs on Roaring Wind for Glen Kotzen in the last to take his total to just two short of his 5 000 target.
Anthony Delpech (right) took the Victor Ludorum (top jockey) award and he kicked off yesterday’s leg with comfortable win on Indaba in the Table Bay Hotel Handicap. The three-year-old has now won three on the trot and Dean Kannemeyer somewhat understandably reckons she has a real future.
He said: “I am going to enter her for the Avontuur Cape Fillies Guineas although, as Anthony said, she really needs 1 800-2 000m. But she has a lot of potential.”
Bernard Fayd’Herbe, taking part in this competition for the first time, landed the Egyptair Handicap on Saint Sophia for Mike Bass on a day the Milnerton maestro could do no wrong.
Pictures: Liesl King
Classic ‘quinella’ for Shaw
PUBLISHED: November 17, 2014
South African trainer Patrick Shaw not only captured his second Singapore Gold Cup with Argentinian-bred stayer Quechua on Sunday, but for good measure, also his second quinella (exacta) in the time-honoured classic.
After Mr Line (Jeff Lloyd) and War Horn ran 1-2 in the 2200m handicap showpiece in 2006, Shaw made several attempts at another golden strike, but none of his runners could quite pass muster until Quechua finally ended the long wait with Emperor’s Banquet running on to complete the stable queue-up.
It was not just Shaw who was saddling the forecast in the Gold Cup as the Yongs of the Avengers/Tmen Stable race both Quechua and Emperor’s Banquet, not to mention they were also the connections behind Mr Line under the Quartet Stable.
The Gold Cup triumph capped a memorable day for Shaw, who had earlier landed three winners.
“This was the big one we’ve long planned for this horse. We bought him especially for the Gold Cup. And this is my second Gold Cup and the second time I’ve finished first and second. When I do a job, I do it well,” joked Shaw who recently underwent a minor surgery.
“We spoke to Corey after he drew wide and the plan was to jump well and go forward and that’s exactly how it panned out.
“As I said before, he’s the true stayer in the race and Corey rode him a treat. Winning the Gold Cup eight years ago with Mr Line and War Horn second was special but this is also special, especially as I’ve done it again for the Yong family who have been wonderful supporters of mine for a long time.
“I will give him a break now and we’ll look at races like the SIA Cup and the Derby for him next year.”
The $3 million Group 1 Singapore Airlines International Cup in May and the $1.15 million Group 1 Emirates Singapore Derby in July are Singapore’s two most coveted races over 2000m.
– Singapore Turf Club
Tevez on target
PUBLISHED: November 17, 2014
Cape Merchants king Mike Bass did it again at Kenilworth yesterday, winning this hugely competitive handicap for the seventh time in 17 years and, for good measure, sending out three of the first four.
Aldo Domeyer on last year’s winner Tevez, trying to thread his way through the eye of a needle approaching the furlong marker, had to switch right when the tiny gap closed but he still got up on the 8-1 chance 30m out to beat Daring Dave by three-quarters of a length. Hammie’s Hooker was a head away third, half a length in front of Lanner Falcon.
Bass said: “I liked Lanner Falcon and Tevez but I had a lot of respect for Hammie’s Hooker and I think her next run will be the Diadem here on 27 December. Then I will consider either the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate or the Maine Chance Paddock Stakes, both on 10 January.”
Capetown Noir, beaten less than four lengths into eighth and running for the first time since July day, delighted Dean Kannemeyer after running prominently throughout. He said: “I was very pleased. That will bring him on tremendously and I will fit another race in before the Queen’s Plate.”
But, sadly for punters, De Kock added to the appalling record of favourites in this race – the last 13 have all lost. This time the 9-2 chance was in trouble a long way out and finished with only four behind him.
A disappointed Corne Orffer said: “His work had been so good yet he was the first horse gone.”
Mercury Sprint winner Fly By Night made Bass’s day by making a winning return under Grant van Niekerk in the conditions plate and her trainer said: “The Betting World Cape Flying Championship is her mission and she could run in Southern Cross and Sceptre en route.”
Picture: Tevez winning the Cape Merchants at Kenilworth on Saturday (Liesl King)
Earl is one to follow
PUBLISHED: November 17, 2014
The Alec Laird-trained National Assembly gelding Earl Of Derby ran a cracking second in the Gr 2 Victory Moon Stakes over 1800m at Turffontein on Saturday and this should have booked him his place in the Gr 1 Sansui Summer Cup, to be run over 2000m on November 29.
However, he has subsequently been raised from a 95 merit rating to 100 so his weight for the Summer Cup will increase from the original 51,5kg to 54kg.
The winner of the race, Judicial, will virtually be an automatic into the final field but he was given the maximum raise of six points to 102 meaning he will carry 55kg in the big race.
Earl Of Derby was just outside the top 20 on the latest Summer Cup log, but not only did he put 5,75 lengths between himself and the third placed horse on Saturday, but he also comfortably beat two horses, Killua Castle and Knock On Wood, who were incumbents in the top 20.
Knock On Wood has since been scratched by Ormond Ferraris leaving at least one spot open.
The panellists will likely have to drop another horse out of the top 20 to make a place for Earl Of Derby, and that could provide them with a headache.
Furthermore, another horse that wasn’t in the top 20, the St. John Gray-trained Everest, finished a commendable third in the Victory Moon, beating Killua Castle by 6,5 lengths, although the latter was carrying joint topweight and had to give Everest 6kg.
Earlier in the day the Sean Tarry-trained Enchanted Silk won a MR 92 Handicap over 1800m in good style and Tarry is hoping that will be enough for her to get into the field as he rates her as his leading contender. The four-year-old Kahal filly finished 4,85 lengths behind Jet Belle in the weight for age Gr 2 Gold Bracelet over 2000m at the end of last season and will likely receive 4kg from her in the Summer Cup. However, her merit rating was only raised to 93 after Saturday’s win, so she is still very much a borderline case.
The versatile Jet Belle also won on Saturday, but was well treated in the Pinnacle Stakes event and wasn’t given a merit rated raise so remains on 103.
Big day for Zackey and Zechner
PUBLISHED: November 17, 2014
Small string Turffontein trainer Tyrone Zackey has made a habit over the years of mixing it with the big boys in the country’s major races and looks set to make an impact again this year after winning the Gr 2 Victory Moon Stakes over 1800m at Turffontein on Saturday with Judicial, having earlier watched his colt Front Rank win a highly competitive three-year-old handicap in facile fashion.
Jockey Karl Zechner had a fine day too, not only driving Judicial to victory, but also winning the Listed Gardenia Handicap over 1000m with the Lucky Houdalakis-trained three-year-old Trippi filly Ha Lucy, who was bred by Wilgerbosdrift Stud and is owned by Heinrich Rix’s Stone Hill Stud.
The going was soft on the day, but Zackey didn’t believe this had anything to do with his respective charges’ wins and said, “The horses were nice and fit, if you have an unfit horse in those conditions you’ve got problems. This is the second time we have won the Victory Moon with a fresh horse (Smanjemanje returned from a five month layoff go win the race in 2011). It can be done if the owners give you the time to plan the race. If owners are always on top of you like a woodpecker it can unsettle your mind. I got permission from the stipes to scratch Judicial recently from a Tuesday meeting. On the other hand I thought he might not get into this race, so was relieved when he did, and it was a plan come together.”
Judicial has always been well regarded by Zackey and his three-year-old year was interrupted by a legal dispute revolving around his gelding, meaning he didn’t run after the Dingaans at the end of November last year until April this year.
The Scott Brothers-bred Miesque’s Approval gelding had always experienced a problem with one of his testicles rising during a gallop and causing pain.
Zackey said, “That’s why he never used to get into the race early and then would finish like an express train.”
Judicial won his last two starts of last season and was then given a break as well as his vaccinations at the height of winter, a time in which Zackey doesn’t like to run his “better horses” due to the prevailing hard going.
Zackey said about the riding arrangements on Saturday, “Karl has been a regular riding work for me in the last six months. Whenever I ask him he is there. I felt I would have to give him some rides, so I put him on Augustinus and he won. I kept him aboard Augustinus and he won again. In the five rides I’ve given him he’s won three, so has been lucky for us.”
Zackey gives a lot of support to his nephew Craig, a promising apprentice. He said, “He has got potential, he just needs experience, and I nearly gave him the ride on Saturday but thought it would be better to hold back a bit from the big races. Karl won the Victory Moon two years ago on the Saeed Mohideen-trained Zambuca and has got a good big race temperament.”
Zackey’s son in law and daughter Kevin and Nadine Backos had a share in the late great racehorse and stallion Victory Moon, so were thrilled to have won the race named after him for the second time.
Judicial, who has also improved since blinkers were applied, had only about three contestants behind him on Saturday after Zechner had expertly eased him in behind horses from a wide draw of ten. He cut through the pack impressively in the straight to hit the front at the 250m mark before staying on resolutely to repel the challenge of Earl Of Derby.
He will be an interesting Sansui Summer Cup runner, although his chances might also depend on the handicapper. He ran off a 96 merit rating and although only winning by 0,75 lengths, there was a further 5,75 lengths back to the third horse.
Earlier the impressive 5,5 lengths victory of the three-year-old Mogok colt Front Rank, who was also bred by Scott Brothers, prompted jockey Piere Strydom to get off and say to Zackey, “Where have you been hiding this horse?!”
He had just pulverised the highly regarded sorts Mutamakkin and Sun On Africa, despite having kicked a tree earlier in the day and then lost a quarter of his shoe during the race.
Zackey said, “There are not many three-year-olds that have won over a mile yet and I just hope he now gets into the Dingaans. This was the first time he had got a draw and he is also drawn three in the Dingaans, so we’re excited. The Dingaans is a race that gives you a good idea of where a horse stands.”
Zackey has always rated Front Rank. He said, “We ran him in the KZN Yearling Sale Million and Grant van Niekerk said he had given him a really good feel, but was just green in front of the big crowd and under the lights. He is a different horse now and will be better the further he goes and the older he gets. The feel he gives you at the races reminds me a lot of two of the better horses I’ve trained Galanthus and Warrior Man.”
Both Judicial and Front Rank pulled up well and Zackey said, “All we need now is some luck in the Summer Cup and Dingaans.”
Zackey, who is highly complementary about Turffontein as a training centre, only has 19 horses at present and concluded, “It is really nice to know we have some good horses to look forward to.”
Picture: Judicial winning the Victory Moon Stakes (JC Photos)