hear the drums east cape horse of the year
hear the drums east cape horse of the year

Hear The Drums

(Photo : Wally Strydom)

(Please click photo to enlarge…)


While it may have been a foregone conclusion that Hear The Drums would win his third consecutive Horse Of The Year title in the Eastern Cape, you never want to be complacent about these things. Summerhill’s association with that part of the world is not coincidental: it’s a matter of birth. The boss grew up in Pondoland in the erstwhile Transkei, and while he’s now a nationalised “Zulu”, his staff still say that when he’s cross, his language is unmistakably the language of that part of the world, Xhosa.

So it’s a matter of some affection then, that we celebrate six of the past eight Horse of the Year titles, courtesy of Brigadier Parker(two), Paris Perfect (who glorified South Africa with his effort in this year’s Dubai World Cup), and now Hear The Drums (three).

Hot off the press, the latest issue of Parade Magazine carries the Hear The Drums story, so we’ll not impinge on their territory.  Since it’s topical though, and you wouldn’t want to leave a good story untold, he is a graduate of the Ready To Run (now the Emperor’s Palace Ready To Run), and he has only six wins to go to equal the all-time South African record of 30 victories. While six wins is more than a lifetime in most horse’s careers, for a fellow with 26 under his belt already, it’s not entirely beyond him.

Hear The Drums didn’t only win the Horse Of The Year title; he also took the Champion Sprinter and Champion Older Horse titles, in the latter category from his fellow Summerhill paddock mate, Vangelis.