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Cape Flying Championship

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WHAT A WINTER RECLAIMS CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP CROWN

What A Winter - Cape Flying Championship
What A Winter - Cape Flying Championship

Click above to watch What A Winter winning the Cape Flying Championship (Grade 1)

(Image : Gold Circle - Footage Tellytrack)

BETTING WORLD CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP (Grade 1)

Kenilworth, Turf, 1000m

26 January 2013

Mike Moon
Mike Moon

Mike Moon

Tab NewsWhat A Winter melted away any thoughts that he might not be South Africa’s best sprinter with a commanding performance in the Grade 1 R600,000 Betting World Cape Flying Championship over 1000m at Kenilworth on Saturday.

The minimum dash was thought in some quarters to be a tad too short for the five-year-old entire these days but, with favourable weight-for age conditions, a brisk headwind and a smart pace, he showed that he is the supreme speedster.

The only horse in Saturday’s contest that looked remotely in the class of What A Winter was three-year-old filly Via Africa from Duncan Howells’ Durban yard. The daughter of Var took the lead shortly after the start and for a while looked like she might burgle it, but eventually succumbed by the best part of a length.

Third-placed Cap Alright, always a game performer, never looked threatening and was several lengths back at the line. The impressive-looking Chave De Oura finished fourth and might need a lot more ground at this stage of his career.

What A Winter jumped on terms and matched strides with some of his eager young rivals in the first half of the race. However, once jockey Bernard Fayd’Herbe got to work on him inside the final 400m there was no doubting the eventual outcome.

Before the race, What A Winter’s trainer Mike Bass said that his colt was in the peak of condition, having come out of the 1600m L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate - false start, challenging trip and all - in very good nick.

And he justified his conditioner’s bullishness with a consummate performance.

With many of the country’s other top sprinters of recent years retired or exported - such as Val De Ra and Shea Shea - What A Winter would seem to have a clutch of upcoming weight-for-age sprinting titles at his mercy and is likely to be aimed at big prizes in the KwaZulu-Natal winter season.

The young filly Via Africa is clearly a talent of note and will win some big races.

What A Winter, a five-year-old son of Western Winter out of the Ahonoora mare Waseela, was bred by Daytona Stud. He is owned by Mike Bass, Bryn Ressell, Marsh Shirtliff and GN Shirtliff.

BETTING WORLD CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP (Grade 1)

Final Result

#

LBH

Horse

Kg

MR

Dr

Jockey

Trainer

1

0.00

WHAT A WINTER

60.0

120

9

B Fayd’Herbe

Mike Bass

2

0.75

VIA AFRICA

54.0

100

4

A Forbes

Duncan Howells

3

5.00

CAP ALRIGHT

60.0

110

6

K Teetan

Justin Snaith

4

6.00

CHAVE DE OURA

56.5

103

7

S Cormack

Dennis Drier

5

7.25

TORRA BAY (AUS)

57.5

96

1

M Byleveld

Dennis Drier

6

7.30

CAPE ROYAL

56.5

106

5

K Neisius

Dean Kannemeyer

7

8.55

MAGICO

60.0

107

3

G Schlechter

Eric Sands

8

9.80

TETELESTAI

60.0

106

8

* K der Melo

Garth Puller

9

10.30

JINZO

60.0

106

2

C Puller

Garth Puller

Extract from Tab News

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Comment

NHLAVINI : THE PASSING OF A LEGEND

Nhlavini
Nhlavini

Nhlavini

(Photo : Summerhill Stud Archives)

NHLAVINI (SAF)

(National Emblem (SAF) - Valley Mist (SAF)

The frenetics surrounding the Cape Premier Yearling Sale and the J&B Met, and the speed at which the social goings-on were taking place, made us oblivious to the fact that the World Economic Forum was in full swing in Davos. Sadly, and significantly for us, we even missed the death in relative infancy, of our ageless champion, Nhlavini. If you’re chalking up the great names of those that grew up here, he’d be up there with the best : we speak of St Pauls, Mowgli, Sentinel, Magic Mirror, Panjandrum, Dancing Duel, Imperial Despatch, Spook and Diesel, Pick Six, Igugu, Pierre Jourdan, Rebel King and Imbongi.

For that matter, the Markus and Ingrid Jooste’s colour bearer would’ve ranked with best anywhere. Apart from Pocket Power, he must be the only horse to have lined up six times for an Equus Award, where he walked away with the championship on three occasions as the nation’s leading sprinter, the last time at eight years of age. The Brits will tell you that the Zulus are feared for their exploits in battle, and Nhlavini (Zulu for “playboy”), would stand right alongside the warrior kings, Shaka and Cetewayo, as a racehorse.

A championship class campaigner by any standards, he got more than he would’ve anywhere else in the hands of Charles Sydney Laird. We use his name to emphasise his ancestory, as a clue to the expertise that made Nhlavini what he was. There was a sentimental attachment to the progeny of National Emblem in general in the Laird family, but nowhere was it stronger than it was with Nhlavini. Religiously, at the end of his winter campaigns in KwaZulu Natal, his trainer sent him home to his birthplace, where he occupied the sacred paddock which in the 60s, housed the multiple champion sire, Masham, in the shadow of the great eucalypts of Hartford House.

Rested, the brave soldier always returned to the fray, always faithful, always true. This was especially so in his latter years, when it seemed his heart was willing but his limbs could take no more. His master was always masterful, and it was a measure of his great respect for the great horse that in his latter years, there were only two races on the official calendar. The Diadem Stakes and the Cape Flying Championship, at six, seven and eight. His three consecutive Diadems and two Flying Championships (some still say three) tell us the respect was mutual. His harvest was three million and more.

His father’s tally at Summerhill alone included some fifteen Stakes winners, among a litany of Black type scorers, the best of them (Nhlavini, Rebel King, Carnadore, all champions, Decorated Hero, Princely Heir and Lotti), trained by Charles Laird, while top-liners, Fez (Gr1), Royal Emblem (Gr1) and Thekkady, were also inmates of our paddocks carrying the National Emblem hip- sticker on their backsides.

summerhill stud, south africa
summerhill stud, south africa

Further Information :

Linda Norval 27 (0) 33 263 1081

or email linda@summerhill.co.za

www.summerhill.co.za

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LOW FLYING CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP

jj the jet plane winning the mercury sprint
jj the jet plane winning the mercury sprint

Click above to watch JJ The Jet Plane’s last run in South Africa; The Mercury Sprint (Gr1) in July 2010

(Photo : Gold Circle - Footage : Tellytrack)

CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP (Grade 1)

Kenilworth, Turf, 1000m

21 January 2012

For as long as we can remember, the time-honoured Cape Flying Championship (Gr1) has been one of the better subscribed sprints in the land. That there are only six competitors for Saturday’s renewal would’ve been remarkable if it weren’t for the fact the line-up includes three current champions, the emerging rocket, What A Winter, the amazing filly Val Da Ra, and it marks the return of the globe-trotting international Group One hero, J J The Jet Plane. He hasn’t been seen on a South African course since July 2010, and that was at the end of an unbroken sequence of seven consecutive victories.

JJ of course, has a strong genetic connection with Summerhill and Hartford. His mother was a Stakes-winning daughter of the world record equalling broodmare sire, Northern Guest, our most famous resident, and she was bred here by Gordon Sigcau, brother to the reigning King of Pondoland, Mpondimbini Sigcau. The family traces to an old Hartford taproot, so this man’s prowess, up there with the best sprinters the country has known, is not surprising.

Equally unsurprising is the size of the field. Champions have always got something to prove when pitted together, but when at best, all the others are doing in the line-up is running for fourth place money, you may as well reserve your talents for other fish. Whatever the outcome though, the presence of these three champions guarantees purists one helluva contest.

For the record, Summerhill’s recent history in the event surpasses all-comers. In the course of the first decade of this millennium, graduates of these paddocks took the laurels three times (Nhlavini in 2005 and 2006, and Rebel King in 2009) while each of them were runners up in other years.

FINAL FIELD

#

Horse

Kg

MR

Dr

Jockey

Trainer

1

J J THE JET PLANE

60.0

122

3

B Fayde’Herbe

Lucky Houdalakis

2

WHAT A WINTER

60.0

117

6

K Neisius

Mike Bass

3

COPPER PARADE

60.0

108

4

G Hatt

Joey Ramsden

4

CAPTAIN’S SECRET

60.0

107

5

M Byleveld

Mike Bass

5

RABATTACHE

60.0

107

2

R Fourie

Glen Puller

6

VAL DE RA

57.5

111

1

A Forbes

Dennis Drier

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2010 CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP VIDEO AND RESULTS

cape flying championship 2010 video
cape flying championship 2010 video

Click above to watch the 2010 Cape Flying Championship

(Footage : Tellytrack)

R600,000 CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP (GRADE 1) 1000M

KENILWORTH RACECOURSE

23 JANUARY 2010

FINAL RESULTS

#

LBH

Horse

Kg

MR

Dr

Jockey

Trainer

1

0.00

WARM WHITE NIGHT

58.0

109

2

A Marcus

Charles Laird

2

0.25

BLUE TIGER

58.0

108

14

B Fayd’Herbe

Mike Bass

3

1.50

THUNDER KEY

58.0

106

3

*K Teetan

Glen Kotzen

4

1.60

HEAR THE DRUMS

58.0

112

1

G Schlechter

Des McLachlan

5

1.85

CASEY COOL

58.0

101

13

F Anthony

Darryl Hodgson

6

2.35

GAULTIER

58.0

107

10

C Puller

Mike Bass

7

2.60

BUSH PIRATE

58.0

99

4

B Morgenrood

Joey Ramsden

8

2.70

MAINBRACE

58.0

99

6

K Jupp

Basil Marcus

9

2.75

VILLANDRY

54.5

105

9

M Byleveld

Vaughan Marshall

10

3.25

CAPTAIN’S SECRET

54.5

104

5

K Neisius

Mike Bass

11

3.75

RUSHING WIND

58.0

100

7

*A Domeyer

Mike Bass

12

5.25

ALVARO (AUS)

58.0

97

11

R Fourie

Justin Snaith

13

6.75

CYBER CASE

58.0

101

12

M Mienie

Charles Laird

14

8.25

RELINYANE

58.0

100

8

M Winnaar

Justin Snaith

HEAR THE DRUMS : THE WAR HORSE

hear the drums
hear the drums

Hear The Drums

(Photo : Wally Strydom)

“Can you hear the drums, Fernando?

I remember long ago another starry night like this.”

Extract from The Times

By Mike Moon

mike moon
mike moon

Mike MoonListen carefully, and you might hear distant drums beating out a call to arms. Before there’s panic, let’s explain that the boom-boom is all about a horse.

Unless you’ve had your ear close to the ground, you might never have heard of Hear The Drums. Indeed, many racing fans have yet to fully grasp the legend of this seven-year-old gelding.

Some might have heard of Sentinel, a champion racehorse of the 1970’s that won 29 times. Well, Hear The Drums topped that a fortnight ago, galloping to his 30th victory.

It was commonly thought that Sentinel held South Africa’s winning record, but anoraks have come up with a nag called Screech Owl, with 32 wins in the 1950’s.

These numbers are mind-boggling.

Most thoroughbreds never win a race; two victories constitutes a satisfactory turf career, and five brings bragging rights. Thirty is in the Tiger Woods-Lance Armstrong league.

Then consider that Hear The Drums has only had 53 starts, with 15 place finishes, and that most victories came under handicap weighting that might have stopped a train.

Hear The Drums is likely to claim the record in due course, and could well inch closer to it when he contests the Cape Flying Championship at Kenilworth in Cape Town today.

However, this race is of greater import than just one more notch on a stable doorpost. It would be his first Grade 1 victory.

It seems unbelievable that a horse with 30 wins doesn’t have a top-grader among them. But Hear The Drums is a resident of Port Elizabeth, a busy racing centre that bafflingly doesn’t have graded sprint races on its calendar.

So, the warhorse must travel to conquer beneath the Great Mountain.

He’s been there before. Twice he’s tackled this big sprint - finishing fifth, then fourth, with good excuses for failure both times.

Owner Peter Fabricius tells me he’s confident of a bold showing today. But, whatever the outcome, he won’t be complaining - Hear The Drums has already delivered him R1.6-million in stake money, for a purchase price of R42,000.

Hear The Drums came to Fabricius by chance.

Sitting bored in the office of his Durban clothing firm one day, he idly called a friend, Mick Goss, who was at a horse sale.

Goss mentioned that in the auction ring right then was a horse he himself had bred - a speedster that would go for a song because he was small and unfashionably pedigreed. The finger of fate tapped lightly.

Speaking of songs, by now I trust that you’re humming the lyric slyly inserted above (even highbrow musicos get darn Abba on the brain).

If Hear The Drums wins, there’ll surely be some lusty singing of it down Port Elizabeth way.

“I can see it in your eyes, How proud you were to fight for freedom in this land.”

SELECTION

Kenilworth, Race 8: 1 Hear The Drums, 13 Villandry, 7 Cyber Case, 3 Blue Tiger

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WHO WILL CAPTURE THE CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP?

cape flying championship kenilworth racecourse
cape flying championship kenilworth racecourse

BETTING WORLD CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIP (GRADE 1) 1000M

KENILWORTH RACECOURSE

23 JANUARY 2010

megan romeyn
megan romeyn

Megan RomeynTomorrow sees the much anticipated running of the Grade One Cape Flying Championship over 1000m at Kenilworth and it promises to be a cracker of a race, despite the absence of Private Jet whom trainer Geoff Woodruffis aiming at the Computaform Sprint.

Summerhill is well represented with four challengers; Hear The Drums (winning-most horse of the last thirty years in South Africa) aiming to crack his first Grade One victory, Thunder Key (winner of the Gr.2 Diadem Stakes) and Relinyane(both sons of Summerhill sire Muhtafal) as well as Bush Pirate.

One can never discount the Charles Laird entries, the mercurial Warm White Night and the inform Cyber Casewho is always dangerous over short distances. Vaughan Marshall’sVillandryand the four Mike Bassentries (Blue Tiger, Gaultier,Rushing Wind and Captain’s Secret) are all in with a shout.

FINAL FIELD

#

Horse

Kg

MR

Dr

Jockey

Trainer

1

HEAR THE DRUMS

58.0

112

1

G Schlechter

Des McLachlan

2

WARM WHITE NIGHT

58.0

109

2

A Marcus

Charles Laird

3

BLUE TIGER

58.0

108

14

B Fayd ‘Herbe

Mike Bass

4

GAULTIER

58.0

107

10

C Puller

Mike Bass

5

THUNDER KEY

58.0

106

3

*K Teetan

Glen Kotzen

6

CASY COOL

58.0

101

13

F Anthony

Darryl Hodgson

7

CYBER CASE

58.0

101

12

M Mienie

Charles Laird

8

RELINYANE

58.0

100

8

G Hatt

Justin Snaith

9

RUSHING WIND

58.0

100

7

*A Domeyer

Mike Bass

10

BUSH PIRATE

58.0

99

4

tba

Joey Ramsden

11

MAINBRACE

58.0

99

6

K Jupp

Basil Marcus

12

ALVARO (AUS)

58.0

97

11

R Fourie

Justin Snaith

13

VILLANDRY

54.5

105

9

M Byleveld

Vaughan Marshall

14

CAPTAIN’S SECRET

54.5

104

5

K Neisius

Mike Bass

BETTING

#

Horse

Current

Opening

2

WARM WHITE NIGHT

5/2

3/1

14

CAPTAIN’S SECRET

9/2

9/2

13

VILLANDRY

9/2

11/2

1

HEAR THE DRUMS

8/1

8/1

6

CASEL COOL

10/1

10/1

3

BLUE TIGER

12/1

10/1

5

THUNDER KEY

12/1

8/1

7

CYBER CASE

12/1

10/1

8

RELINYANE

16/1

12/1

10

BUSH PIRATE

20/1

20/1

11

MAINBRACE

20/1

20/1

9

RUSHING WIND

25/1

20/1

12

ALVARO

25/1

20/1

4

GAULTIER

25/1

25/1

BETTING COURTESY OF BETTING WORLD AS AT 3PM 22 JANUARY 2010

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GRADE ONE GALLOPERS : The Holy Grail

summerhill stallion statue(Summerhill Stud)

REBEL KING’s big win in Saturday’s Cape Flying Championship, marked the third Grade One winner to emerge from the Summerhill paddocks in the past six months. Muhtafal’s daughter, OUTCOME got the ball rolling with a comfortable win in the Garden Province Stakes, in July. DESERT LINKS (Kahal) followed up in the Canon Gold Cup, and now REBEL KING has paid tribute to the benefits of his own upbringing.

Grade One winners don’t just happen, certainly not in this sort of succession. They take painstaking planning, rearing and education. The hoisting of the full regalia of the six Summerhill flags at the stallion barn, hails a team that never lies down.

THE REBEL IS A KING : AT LAST

rebel king and connectionsRebel King
(Photo : Gold Circle)

South Africa is renowned for the quality of its sprinters. The names of SENTINEL, TROCADERO, ABBEY BOY, MAGIC MIRROR and SENOR SANTA among many others, resonate from the not so distant past, yet recent years have witnessed a plethora of outstanding performers in this department. GOLDEN LOOM, NATIONAL COLOUR, WAR ARTIST and the appropriately named JJ THE JET PLANE and MYTHICAL FLIGHT, illustrate the point as forcibly as any other generation might have done.

In most countries and in most eras, horses of the calibre of Summerhill-bred, REBEL KING, might’ve stood out among their contemporaries. There have been few horses less fortunate than this one, to have been born when he was. Generation after generation have thrown up one good horse after another, and just as he dispensed with MYTHICAL FLIGHT, along came WAR ARTIST and then JJ THE JET PLANE. On Saturday, REBEL KING finally earned his Grade One glory in the Cape Flying Championship, unfettered at last by the threat of these giants and unsullied by the complications of unsoundness which have blighted his C.V. thus far.

The net result? Markus Jooste and his partners have a deserved stallion prospect on their hands; Charles Laird increases his lead in the Trainers Championship to a R1million plus; and NATIONAL EMBLEM goes to the top of the Sires Log, alongside his erstwhile paddock mate at Summerhill, KAHAL.

REBEL KING cruises in Cape Flying Championship

rebel king and anton marcusRebel King with Anton Marcus aboard
(Photo : Gold Circle)

A polished performance by Rebel King lead to his richly deserved victory in Saturday’s Gr1 Cape Flying Championship. For the Charles Laird stable, Rebel King’s win adds to the superb double by champion sprinter Nhlavini in 2005 and 2006.

Racing South Africa reports that as the gates opened, Port Elizabeth star Hear The Drums and KwaZulu Natal visitor Battlestar Express immediately engaged in a battle for the lead, with the Gauteng challenger, Rebel King, settling just a couple of lengths off the pacesetters. The chestnut quickened into the lead at the furlong mark and although strongly challenged by Blue Tiger on his inside, he maintained his advantage to the line to score a rather cosy neck victory. Blue Tiger held on to the runner-up spot from his fast-finishing stable companion Gaultier.

A dual Gr.2 winner prior to this victory, Rebel King had mixed it up with some of the finest sprinters in South Africa. He finished runner-up to champion Mythical Flight in the 2007 Computaform Sprint and chased home War Artist and JJ The Jet Plane respectively in the last two renewals of the Mercury Sprint. Rebel King entered the Cape Flying Championship off a tight runner-up effort in the Gr.2 Merchants Stakes at Turffontein and a fast-finishing third behind Blue Tiger in the Gr.2 Diadem Stakes. All credit to ‘caretaker’ trainer Joey Ramsden for supervising the winner’s preparation since that run and saddling Rebel King in the absence of Charles Laird, who is currently in New Zealand.

Joey Ramsden said : “It’s been tremendous fun having him, he’s very intelligent, a real thinker. Hats off to his devoted groom Joseph, who has done a wonderful job.”

Five-year-old Rebel King, a  R210,000 yearling purchase, has been a consistent moneyspinner for his connections, boasting an enviable record of seven wins and 13 places from 22 starts, with stakes earnings now in excess of R1.5million. Still an entire (a rarity among South African-bred older males), victory here has obviously boosted his prospects as a potential stallion and his pedigree certainly warrants him a place at stud in time to come.

Bred at Summerhill Stud, Rebel King is one of seven Gr.1 winners sired by champion and top sire National Emblem, out of Cousin Linda, a half-sister to stakes winners Lucy’s Lad and Cousin John, both sons of Jallad.

Grandam Cousin Lucy never raced, but earned her place at stud as a daughter of champion sire Foveros and Gr.3-placed Luciennes, the dam of Gr.1 Garden Province winner Lyrical Linda (also by Jallad), Gr.3 Peninsula Stakes hero Acacia Woodland (Fort Wood) and Gr.3-placed five-time winner Tolme (Model Man). She hails from one of Highlands Farms’ leading families, that of Elevation full brothers Duc Du Orleans (Gr.1 SA Nursery) and Gr.2 winner and multiple Gr.1-placed Count Du Barry, as well as Persian Wonder siblings Gay Mam’selle (Natalia Stakes) and Big Swinger, who finished second in three Gr.1 Guineas.

CAPE FLYING CHAMPIONSHIPS : The Three Musketeers

battlestar expressBattlestar Express
(JC Photos)

Observant students of this weekend’s Cape Flying Championship (G1), might’ve noticed that the top three in the merit ratings have one thread in common; they all grew up at Summerhill. While they represent three different generations, it’s a tribute to their upbringing that the current top three horses in any category in a nation, should emerge from one place, and that surely says something about the environment in which they were raised and the people that had their hands in the mix.

The honour of carrying the number one saddle-cloth rests with Des McLachlan’s millionaire, HEAR THE DRUMS, presently the winning-most racehorse in South Africa, with 21 victories to his credit. Number two is Charles Laird’s REBEL KING, whose forte as a top athlete has been complicated by the fact that at five years old, he’s had to contend with the spectacular talents of NATIONAL COLOUR, MYTHICAL FLIGHT, JJ THE JET PLANE and WAR ARTIST as his adversaries; a collection of some of the most formidable sprinters in history. In any other era, he might have been a Champion several times, yet he’s had to content himself more often than not, with the role of bridesmaid.

Rounding out the trio is MUHTAFAL’s dual Stakes winner of this season, BATTLESTAR EXPRESS, whom Karen Anthony shipped to Cape Town in a team-up with Hong Kong ‘s Champion Jockey, Felix Coetzee.

The competition? No doubt the stiffest will come from last month’s impressive Diadem Stakes winner, BLUE TIGER, and Glen Kotzen’s in-form filly, LADY WINDERMERE, who goes to post in the name of Gary Player, and Gaynor Rupert’s Drakenstein Stud, among others.