Anyone watching racing on the weekend had to be “bowled” by two particular performances. The first at Turffontein, where the Rambo Dancer filly, Spring Garland, took a Fillies Graduation for four-time winning trainer, Gary Alexander, by a hand-and-heels 4 ¼ lengths. In common with the big winners at Clairwood, she received her pre-training education at Summerhill, following her purchase for R150,000. She comes from a family that displayed temperament and was given the easiest and most patient of schooling, and she’s a tribute not only to our farm staff, but also to Gary’s patience. It didn’t take long for interviewer Dave Mollet to identify her as a major feature race prospect for the forthcoming Highveld Spring season.
At Clairwood, Andre Kirsten’s Catmandu took on Mike de Kock’s Braggadacio at levels, following a lay-off since February, and he held on for a neck victory in spite of needing the run. Knowing he’d already been placed behind Kildonan at Graded Stakes level, his trainer took no time endorsing him as a major race contender, and he’s another for the Spring season notebook. As a R70,000 graduate of the 2005 Ready to Run sale, he comes from the celebrated English family of classic winner, Teenoso (English Derby), Give Thanks (Irish Oaks), Old Country (Italian Derby) and Violetta (English 1000 Guineas). With this ancestry he has every right to be good, and he’s not a bad advertisement for the quality and value at the Ready to Run.