David Mollett
It was The Eagles who penned the hit song New Kid in Town but Summerhill Stud in Mooi River might boast it has doubled that with the arrival of two new stallions for the 2015 breeding season.
— David Mollett / Business Day

The new kids on Summerhill's block, which seems to almost annually upgrade its sires with Champion Thoroughbreds, are Capetown Noir and the Aga Khan's former top performer, Linngari.

The former needs no introduction to local racing fans since the son of Western Winter proved a Champion Miler in the hands of astute Cape trainer Dean Kannemeyer.

Linngari probably earned more air miles than Gary Player, with his travels in search of equine glory taking him to France, England, Dubai, Hong Kong, Italy, Ireland, Germany and Turkey. At the end of his career, boarding a plane was as easy as people boarding a bus.

What needs to be remembered about Capetown Noir is that his contemporaries were some of the best horseflesh we have seen in the past decade; they included both Yorker and Jackson, whose careers are still being closely followed.

After a foray to Dubai where he never ran, dual Grade 1 winner Yorker is in the UK with trainer William Haggas. Jackson has been retired to stud.

 Capetown Noir

Capetown Noir



It was in the L'Ormarins Queen's Plate at Kenilworth that Capetown Noir put up arguably the best performance of his career, beating three quality horses in Yorker, Jackson and King of Pain.

"His arrival at Summerhill marks him as the best South African racehorse to set foot on the property since National Emblem two decades ago," enthuses Summerhill chief Mick Goss.

Although Linngari, a son of Indian Ridge, could match it with the best, he might have chalked up more than two Grade 1 wins if he had had a bit of luck. He ran second in the prestigious Grade 1 Prix de la Foret at Longchamp and missed out on another winner's cheque when runner-up in the Dubai Duty Free.

"Linngari was a racehorse, no doubt about it," says Goss.

At Summerhill he will be under the care of longtime stallion master Greig Muir. He said: "Our eyes have been fixed on Linngari since those heady days in Dubai and we followed him to Hong Kong, Germany, France, England, Ireland, Italy and Istanbul in the hope he'd make it here one day."

Extracts from Business Day