Watch a candid interview with Brian Joffe post Dubai World Cup Carnival
(Image and Footage : Andrew Bon)
EMPERORS PALACE NATIONAL YEARLING SALE
TBA Sales Complex, Gosforth Park, South Africa
26 - 28 April 2013
Summerhill Stud CEO
Mick GossBig deals make big men excited, but racehorses can turn big men into little boys. You only had to witness Brian Joffe’s leap into the arms of Mike de Kock after Shea Shea’s demolition of the Al Quoz field on World Cup night, to know the truth of that statement. As one of the continent’s leading businessman, Joffe transacts in billions, yet I doubt even the clinching of a major acquisition or the birth of a child could’ve evoked the response Andrew Bon captured on his videocam that night.
The roots of his euphoria started as most of them do, at Bloodstock South Africa’s sales complex alongside Rand Airport on the “other side of town.” Commonly known as the East Rand, the Germiston - Benoni - Boksberg triangle is a sprawling industrial complex, populated largely by the “blue collar” brigade. Yet it’s spawned some of the nation’s biggest celebrities of modern times, Charlize Theron, Princess Charlene of Monaco, Investec’s Stephen Koseff and Larry Nesdtadt, among dozens of others.
So there must be something magical about this place which has given us any number of racing’s legends, right back to Hawaii, William Penn, Sea Cottage and Colorado King.
Among the current luminaries are the outstanding three-year-olds, Capetown Noir; Saturday’s short-priced Derby favourite, Tellina, and the SA Classic hero, Love Struck, all graduates of the 2011 class at the Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale.
Anyone sniffing about at the Summerhill precinct in Block A at the sales ground that year, might’ve thrust his hand into a veritable treasure trove. Besides Love Struck, you might’ve been lucky enough to dig up the prodigiously talented Blueridge Mountain, who’s looking a bargain now as a Group One ace, despite her hefty R2million sales tag. Or Patriotic Rebel, just a length adrift of Capetown Noir in the Investec Derby (Gr.1), or Mullins Bay’s handsome son, Gitiano, who was last seen in flying mode scorching up the Turffontein straight for the 3rd cheque in the Classic. That’s four Group One performers already from our sophomore team, and we’ve forgotten about Rebel Queen, who ran her rivals giddy in the Nkosazana Stakes a fortnight ago.
It’s a tough act to follow, we know, but there are some damn nice steeds out “East” this week, and if you talk to the Summerhill lads, they’ll tell you our lot are as good as we’ve trucked to Germiston. Remember though, they rely on this sale for a living, so take it from whence it comes!
That said, you can’t say you didn’t get the “heads-up”, particularly as it comes from a football team which this weekend literally made the Inter Farm Football trophy (just about as smart as the Jules Rimet version) their own after three consecutive championships. The word is that they are looking to emulate the farm’s eight consecutive Breeder’s Premierships before going “pro”. And to illustrate how seriously this contest is taken, Michael Booysen, Delani Mtshali, John Motaung and Elliot Bhengu made the 900km round trip from Summerhill on Sunday, to provide solidarity. Those on the farm will tell you, they were back on duty at 6am Monday morning, as all good men always are.