(Photo : Drakenstein Stud)
“Top Three on the North American Sires List”
There’s a lot of talk in South African racing circles, about a new definition for the “Big Five”, the stallion Big Five that is. But when it comes to international commentators on the stallion business, the King of the Beasts is undoubtedly Bill Oppenheim, erstwhile American now living in Scotland. When Bill writes about you, you better know you’re in the vicinity of the big time, and this morning, he penned this piece on Gaynor Rupert’s first season sire, Trippi, whose exploits have occupied these spaces many times in the past. Bill wrote thus in the Thoroughbred Daily News :
“South Africa’s Drakenstein Stud acquired Trippi (End Sweep) in the summer of 2008, and his first South African yearlings, foals of 2009 in the Southern Hemisphere, are selling now. He was already doing well when his first representatives came up at the new Cape Town sale at the end of January, when 21 yearlings by Trippi averaged around $79,000 (R490,000). Right after that, his Gourmet Dinner ran second in the G3 Holy Bull, but Trippi’s Grade 2 double at Gulfstream last weekend propelled him into the top three on the North American general sire lists for the year. Travellin Man won the G2 Swale on the Florida Derby undercard on Sunday, but the real championship performance might have been the filly R. Heat Lightning’s win in the G2 Gulfstream Park Oaks, in which she ran a Beyer fig of 100 - already good enough to win the G1 Kentucky Oaks in most years. This followed on from her win in the G2 Davona Dale, in which she ran a Beyer 98; these figures are actually higher than most of the top 3-year-old colts that are running right now, by the way.
What’s really striking about R. Heat Lightning’s figures is that she was very consistent as a two-year-old, winning the G1 Spinaway (Beyer 76), and running second in the G1 Frizette (78) and G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (82), but the times were slow and the figs were low. Now, all of a sudden, this filly has improved by 16 points since November, and sustained that improvement in her second and third starts at three. I’ll be betting on her in her next start. Trippi has 20 more yearlings catalogued in South Africa’s traditional number one yearling sale, near Johannesburg, in a couple of weeks time. He should still be very hot.”
Summerhill consigns two Trippis to the Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale, 15 - 17 April, (Lots 8 and 141).
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