rebel king and connectionsRebel King
(Photo : Gold Circle)

South Africa is renowned for the quality of its sprinters. The names of SENTINEL, TROCADERO, ABBEY BOY, MAGIC MIRROR and SENOR SANTA among many others, resonate from the not so distant past, yet recent years have witnessed a plethora of outstanding performers in this department. GOLDEN LOOM, NATIONAL COLOUR, WAR ARTIST and the appropriately named JJ THE JET PLANE and MYTHICAL FLIGHT, illustrate the point as forcibly as any other generation might have done.

In most countries and in most eras, horses of the calibre of Summerhill-bred, REBEL KING, might’ve stood out among their contemporaries. There have been few horses less fortunate than this one, to have been born when he was. Generation after generation have thrown up one good horse after another, and just as he dispensed with MYTHICAL FLIGHT, along came WAR ARTIST and then JJ THE JET PLANE. On Saturday, REBEL KING finally earned his Grade One glory in the Cape Flying Championship, unfettered at last by the threat of these giants and unsullied by the complications of unsoundness which have blighted his C.V. thus far.

The net result? Markus Jooste and his partners have a deserved stallion prospect on their hands; Charles Laird increases his lead in the Trainers Championship to a R1million plus; and NATIONAL EMBLEM goes to the top of the Sires Log, alongside his erstwhile paddock mate at Summerhill, KAHAL.