KwaZulu-Natal's Equus National Champion Breeders Summerhill Stud dominates the various categories in the 2016 KZN Breeders Awards with 14 nominations, amongst them the likes of Rabada, No Worries, Heaps Of Fun, Intergalactic, Witchcraft and Arch Rival.
Coming from us, you’d be forgiven for confusing our title today with the great racing filly, Allez France, who carried the colours of the famous art dealers, the Wildensteins, to victories in all the corners of the globe that mattered in her day. For a change though, this piece is about cooking, and another case of a couple of goals scored by Hartford House for every one we get over the line at Summerhill.
You’ve heard us say before that the stallion barn is the soul of Summerhill. The Gosses have been chasing stallions for the best part of a century now, and in many respects our lives on the turf have been shaped by them. As a family, our first real taste of the potency of a stallion’s influence came courtesy of Teddy’s grandson, Asbestos II, sire of my grandfather’s diminutive Durban July hero, St Pauls, yet it wasn’t until almost four decades later that Northern Guest was destined to launch a veritable nation.
Intergalactic’s victory over some of Joburg’s best just reminded us. Rabada, Champagne Haze, Heaps Of Fun, Witchcraft, Africa Rising, Miss Turbo, Unagi and Copper Pot. To a man and a woman, all Classic performers or Classic aspirants. CTS Ready To Run Sale: 24th & 25th November.
You have to love this story just as much as you love the way Chris McGrath tells it. His favourite story of the week is also a perfect story for the time of year; a time when all of us, the dreamers, and the cynics, and everyone in between, follow each new yearling round the ring much as gamblers do the ball bouncing round the roulette wheel. Of course, the business needs the guys who pile millions on odd-or-even, red-or-black. But it also needs them to watch in bemusement, from time to time, as their chips are scooped by the fellow who has staked his modest all at far more precarious odds. The ball bounces, wobbles, and finally snags into a numbered groove: the wrong colour for many, but exactly the right number for one. And, because this game calls for skill as well as luck, that man will often turn out to be Bobby O'Ryan.
LINNGARI was the original globe-trotter, and now his offspring are following in their father’s exulted hoofprints.
People waste countless hours debating whether thoroughbred racing is a sport or a form of gambling, when the answer is simple: it’s both. Without wagering, the economic fuel behind the racing game, the raising of horses would be the preserve of wealthy eccentrics, as if they were breeding champion orchids or poodles. Without the emotional impact the sport has on gambling, racing would be little more compelling than jai-alai or slot machines, just another form of generating numbers and payoffs.
Book the fastlane: Summerhill and the Ready To Run.
The latest Summerhill Sires brochure, penned in the hot aftermath of their tenth national Breeders’ Championship, ended with a piece on its sister business Hartford House, with a statement which in the heady context of what had just happened, might’ve smacked of exaggeration: “For every goal Summerhill has scored of late, Hartford has banged in two".
Capetown Noir... byword for precocity, class and desirability everywhere else.
Galileo attracted another star-studded book of mares at Coolmore this year, as befitting his status as the best stallion in the world.
One week, one source... and the Ready To Run.
If there’s one fellow attendees at the world’s biggest gathering of our sports aficionados that doesn’t need an introduction, it is Andrew Harding, Director, Racing Authority of the Hong Kong Jockey Club and convenor of the Asian Racing Conference.
Underlying the dominance wherever it rests in our sport, is generally a matter of the locality of the great stallions, and right now the reigns of the Sadler’s Wells tribe through Galileo, Montjeu, High Chaparral and now Frankel, as well as Danehill and Dubawi have anchored the crown firmly within the island nations of Ireland and England, in that order.
Steeped in more than 140 years of history, South Africa’s Summerhill Stud, located about two hours west of Durban on the eastern side of the country (930 miles from Cape Town), is by any definition a powerhouse.
For the time being, the KZN Racing Awards for 2016 were concluded on Friday evening with a spritely affair from Gold Circle in the cavernous Ilanga room at one of Durban and Solly Kerzner’s oldest landmarks, the Elangeni.
Summerhill Stud CEO Mick Goss presents the farm's stallions standing for the 2016/17 breeding season.
Linngari: sire now of five Group One performers including multiple Group winner Garlingari in 2016, as well as Stakes winners Mr Pommeroy and Linngaro; second-leading French stallion by three-year-old earnings in 2015.
If it's winners you want, you know where to look.
It’s a hundred and sixteen years since the turn of the nineteenth century, and in that time only eight entities have aspired to the title of Champion Breeder in South Africa, which makes it the tightest-held premiership in all of racing. That Summerhill should’ve arrived at its tenth title in twelve years through a new earnings record with hardly a “Big Five” sire in sight, tell us that besides luck, there must’ve been other factors at work. We can only marvel at the efforts of our people, the generosity of the land, and the contribution of the “boys” in the stallion barn.