Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup - Turffontein
Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup - Turffontein

EMPERORS PALACE READY TO RUN CUP

Turffontein, South Africa

2 November 2013

It’s getting tight, but if you’re a candidate with a ticket in a race this week, you’ve still got a shot at lining up for the Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup. In the past week alone, three more put up their hands, and the field doesn’t close till the fat lady sings. It’s a regular refrain of trainers after an indifferent ride, to label jockeys “illiterate”, but the one thing they aren’t, is innumerate. Put R3million bucks on the line, as Phumelela does for the “Cup”, and there’s pandemonium. The problem is, there are just eighteen slots for the big day (sixteen runners and two reserves), and this year competition is as intense as ever, with any one of the top 36 in the merit ratings in with a shout on exposed form. Of course, it’s conceivable that a big performance from a first-timer this week, could leapfrog him right into contention as well, so the door is by no means shut.

Spare a thought for the selection panel for a moment. Big prizes attract big entries, and big controversy is inevitably the bedfellow. While there’s always plenty of ecstasy among those that get over the line, there’s a measure of agony too, for the “near-misses”. The mandate of the panel though, is plain enough. “Choose the best field to compete on turf on the standside track at Turffontein over 1400 metres on the first Saturday in November”, nothing more, nothing less. No matter your merit rating, if you look like a sand specialist, a 1000 metre horse or an-out-and-out -stayer, you’re risking elimination, not that it’s necessarily fatal, but it can put an amber light next to your name, in the absence of compelling evidence of these credentials.

It’s an old adage of the Sale and a race now patronised by Her Serene Highness Princess Charlene of Monaco, that “there’s a horse for everyone at the Ready To Run”. This was best illustrated in the line-up for last year’s Cup, when almost 50% of the field cost R100,000 or less. There’s a slightly more “elitist” feel to this year’s top entries, with a strong element of the R200,000 + purchases (19) among the leading contenders… Which puts a bit of dampener on the conjecture in the press recently that none of last year’s “millionaires” are currently in contention, though it’s also true that only a handful have been to the races, and both have shown glimpses of future potential. Times like these remind us that just a few renewals ago, the first two home, Hollywoodboulevard and Igugu, cost almost R2million between them, and in that particular year, they were the only two in the betting. That said, as long as you have hope, you’ve got a chance, and 10 of this bunch either made R100,000 or less, or were unsold.

“Big” movers this past week included perennial Ready To Run “champion,” Alesh Naidoo’s Nisa’s Love, who obliterated what looked like a competitive field at Turffontein, to take her from 25th in the rankings to 7th. While this week’s log has yet to be published, there were two more sparkling performances at Turffontein Saturday before the rain came down from Shout Out (by Mullins Bay) who franked the form of another claimant, Rainy Day, with a 4.5 length destruction of a field jammed with form, followed by Flight Check’s 2.75 length demolition of an aspiring bunch of stayers over 2600 metres. The daughter of A.P. Arrow’s “sin” may of course, be the distance, but that’s a matter for the selection panel: certainly, the victory was impressive enough.

The “thin red line” on the 18 mark appears to be hovering around the 84/85 merit rating, and traditionalists will tell you that a rating of 85 has long been held as the passport for Stakes-class horses. Scroll down to number 36, and you’ll find a shoal of aspirants in this category. Numerically Charles Laird appears to have the boldest hand, with Admirals Eye, Pej and Nisa’s Love, though he’s matched for numbers by Mike de Kock, Gavin Van Zyl, Geoff Woodruff and Michael Azzie, with Sean Tarry and Weiho Marwing breathing down their necks. A fresh face among them is the former Woodruff assistant, Johan Janse Van Vuuren, who has hopes for the highly regarded Winter Star and first-timer, Casha.

Among consignors, the champion breeders, Summerhill hold the strongest hand with 23 of the top 36 (65%) while demographically, fillies dominate the colts with 21 (60%) against 15.

On the stallion front, the much-lamented loss of Stronghold is evident in his 7 candidates, while Kahal (5), Mullins Bay (4), Admire Main (3) and Solskjaer (3 in the top 16) explain the hand Summerhill has been dealt. As for the imports, the presence among this year’s race “finalists” of the progeny of celebrated international stallions Rock Of Gibraltar (2), Encosta Da Lago, Dylan Thomas and Danehill Dancer, is mirrored by their representation in the sales entries.

EMPERORS PALACE READY TO RUN CUP

Log as at 16 October 2013

#

Horse

Sex

Sire

Trainer

Price (ZAR)

MR

1

UMGIYO (AUS)

Colt

Danehill Dancer

Mike de Kock

525,000

105

2

WINTER STAR

Filly

Solskjaer

Johan Janse Van Vuuren

100,000

104

3

ADMIRAL’S EYE

Filly

Admire Main

Charles Laird

340,000

102

4

ARCETRI PINK (AUS)

Filly

Rock Of Gibraltar

Geoff Woodruff

vendor buy back

102

5

PEJ

Filly

Kahal

Charles Laird

240,000

91

6

DULY ORDAINED (AUS)

Colt

Encosta Da Lago

Mike de Kock

350,000

96

7

NISA’S LOVE

Filly

Kahal

Charles Laird

375,000

90

8

ENCHANTED SILK

Filly

Kahal

Sean Tarry

150,00

88

9

DOVER BEACH

Filly

Mullins Bay

Michael Azzie

80,000

87

10

CELTIC LEGEND

Filly

Stronghold

Mike de Kock

300,000

86

11

ARTIC ROUTE

Filly

Solskjaer

Lucky Houdalakis

60,000

85

12

CHELSEA

Filly

Rebel King

Duncan Howells

260,000

85

13

DIAMOND DIVA

Filly

Solskjaer

Gavin Van Zyl

80,000

85

14

FRANCOIS P

Colt

Captain Al

Michael Azzie

425,000

90

15

JUDICIAL

Colt

Miesque’s Approval

Tyrone Zackey

vendor buy back

90

16

PRINCESS CREO

Filly

Kahal

Justin Snaith

300,000

85

17

TAIPAI TIGRESS

Filly

Tiger Dance

S Janse Van Rensburg

90,000

85

18

USISI (AUS)

Filly

Rock Of Gibraltar

Roy Magner

425,000

85

19

WILD ASH (AUS)

Filly

Dylan Thomas

Geoff Woodruff

vendor buy back

85

20

MOUNT HILLABY

Colt

Mullins Bay

Dominic Zaki

80,000

89

21

LADY OF THE LORDS

Filly

Stronghold

Gary Alexander

340,000

83

22

MANIEVIC

Colt

Var

Vaughan Marshall

375,000

88

23

RAINY DAY

Filly

Stronghold

Sean Tarry

180,000

83

24

PLAYINGTHEENEMY (AUS)

Gelding

Teofilo

Weiho Marwing

700,000

85

25

SHOUT OUT

Filly

Mullins Bay

Geoff Woodruff

120,000

83

26

SOLAR STAR

Colt

Kahal

Dean Kannemeyer

300,000

88

27

ROMAN EXPRESS

Gelding

Antonius Pius

Stuart Pettigrew

80,000

87

28

ONE COOL CAT

Gelding

Tiger Ridge

Heather Adamson

80,000

85

29

BODYBUILDER

Gelding

Stronghold

Gavin Van Zyl

160,000

84

30

GAMBOL

Gelding

Stronghold

Paul Peter

65,000

84

31

HENRY OF YORK (AUS)

Colt

Henrythenavigator

Weiho Marwing

400,000

84

32

CASHA

Filly

Stronghold

Johan Janse Van Vuuren

240,000

77

33

FLIGHT CHECK

Filly

AP Arrow

Gavin Van Zyl

320,000

78

34

DON VITO

Gelding

Stronghold

St John Gray

240,000

82

35

MYSTICAL STAR

Filly

Jet Master

Michael Azzie

1,500,000

-

36

SENSEI

Gelding

Admire Main

Tony Rivalland

110,000

82

Summerhill Candidates denoted by Yellow

National Horseracing Authority

Correct as at 16/10/13

Summerhill Stud Logo
Summerhill Stud Logo

Enquiries :

Tarryn Liebenberg +27 (0) 83 787 1982

or email tarryn@summerhill.co.za

www.summerhill.co.za

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