Solskjaer (left) and Way West (right)
(Photos : Greig Muir)
“Two Stealthy Operators”
Some people go about their business with inordinate fanfare, and gather the legions in their wake. The Pied Piper comes to mind, so does Julius Malema. But at Summerhill, we have two stealthy operators, who are quietly carving a name for themselves with a gathering force of quality performers from their two small crops at the races.
Solskjaer’s a man who’s taken his time making his mark, but those with memories will know he debuted in the Irish Two Thousand Guineas (Gr1). While that was some statement of the esteem in which he was held by Coolmore and one of the world’s top trainers, Aidan O’Brien, it was nonetheless well into his three-year-old season that he first set foot on a racecourse.
It was unlikely then, that his progeny would be any different, and the emergence of Ice Axe as a proper contender for the R2million Sansui Summer Cup (Gr1) is a welcome endorsement for what we’d come to expect from a 120-rated son of one of the world’s top sires of his era.
This weekend, two daughters from his second lot, Final Score and I Got You Babe, put up their hands as likely contenders for higher honours in the impressions they made at Turffontein and Scottsville. Both are modestly priced (R50,000 and R7,000 respectively) graduates of the Summerhill Ready To Run programmes, and Final Score’s victory represented a final bold bid for a place in Saturday’s Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup. It seems the “Sollys” like the sound of “R2million”.
Danehill’s other Summerhill-based son Way West, reminded us of his capacity to surprise, when the unbeaten Hot Girl stampeded up to take her story to two from two. The Way Wests have an affinity for “two”, it appears. Two small crops, two Group One fillies to date, two runners in the Cup (both running for R2million) and Hot Girl two from two.
Two good to be two?