The Louis Goosen-trained four-year-old Trippi gelding, Trip Tease, has put his hand up in earnest now as a genuine Grade 1 Computaform Sprint contender by taking victory in this 1000m sprint, despite carrying a welter 61kg under Goosen’s illustrious brother-in-law jockey Piere Strydom.
Trip Tease won on debut over 1000m on the sand by 8,25 lengths as a young three-year-old, but took four runs to win on the turf. His first win on the turf over 1000m was off a merit rating of 82 and he followed up by winning the Grade 3 Man ‘O War Sprint for three-year-olds over 1100m, also on the turf. After that he rattled off three wins in succession on the sand. A second place on the sand then preceded his win in the Listed Hampton Handicap over 1000m on the sand.
His merit rating had by now rocketed and he looked to have a mountain to climb returning to turf as the handicapper accorded him a 107 merit rating despite his last win on that surface having been off an 86.
However, he continued to defy the handicapper as he started off his turf campaign on 1 November when winning the Listed Golden Loom Handicap over 1000m. That victory was an emotional one for Louis Goosen as he was a colleague and close friend of the late great Buddy Maroun, trainer of the famously tough and prolific Golden Loom.
On Saturday Trip Tease had to race off a merit rating of 112 under handicap conditions, but such is his reputation now that he was sent off as 5/2 favourite. The classy Sean Tarry-trained three-year-old Trippi colt Trip To Heaven was a 3/1 chance and looked the main danger. Trip To Heaven was slowly away again, just as he was when winning the Grade 2 Merchants over 1160m on Sansui Summer Cup day.
Strydom was able to get Trip Tease up against the outside rail, which is usually offers assistance to a horse. The four-year-old Mike de Kock-trained Trippi gelding Tiger Territory was meanwhile making a bold bid from the front and when Trip To Heaven appeared on the scene it looked like those two would fight it out. However, Strydom extracted a late burst from Trip Tease to get up by 0,25 lengths. Tiger Territory and Trip To heaven shared second place.
The big weight for age events like the Computaform Sprint look to be the future for Trip Tease, and as a horse with a winning habit combined with Goosen’s expertise in priming him for a race Trip Tease will always be a tough nut to crack.
Trip Tease was purchased for a mere R70,000 at the Emperors Palace National Two-Year-Old sale and has now earned R879,575 in stakes.
Extracts from Gold Circle / JC Photos (p)