So the R699,000 average at last month's Cape Premier Yearling Sale was a little beyond your pocket - Summerhill Stud have just what the doctor ordered at their 2017 Emperors Palace Summer Ready-To-Run Sale.
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There were many oddities in the story of Kelso. For one thing, he was a perfect gentleman but he was named for a lady. Mrs duPont was actually hoping for a filly when she bred Maid Of Flight to Your Host, as she wanted to name it for a friend, Kelso Everett, whom she considered the most perfect hostess she’d ever known.
Summerhill Stud CEO Mick Goss presents the farm's stallions standing for the 2016/17 breeding season.
Some of the sharpest eyes in the business, see a lot of High Chaparral in the Golden Swords. Which means a word to the wise might be worthwhile. Now, his first standout runners are headed for the Classics.
The day after South Africa's most prestigious race, the Group 1 Vodacom Durban July, was captured by Australian-bred The Conglomerate at Greyviille Racecourse on July 2, racing journalists from nine countries joined breeders and racetrack officials to raise a toast at Summerhill Stud in Mooi River, KwaZulu-Natal.
The old adage “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”, has never been truer. Breeding racehorses is as competitive now as it’s ever been, which means that to play a winning hand, you need to hold the aces. All of them.
When Golden Sword's first crop was admired by some of the best judges in the land, the writing was on the wall. This weekend, Oasis Queen trotted up for Michael Azzie and Adriaan van Vuuren.
When Golden Sword’s first crop was admired by some of the best judges in the land, the writing was on the wall. Last week, the first chickens came home to roost.
Following a somewhat tepid fortnight, the sparks flew for Summerhill this past week with action on both the racecourse and off it. It’s part of our history though, that hard on the heels of a setback, such is the nature of the racing beast that if you keep your tail up, the good news quickly follows the tough tidings.
It was perhaps fitting that Mike de Kock would saddle the first winner of the high class Timeform 122 rated Golden Sword. The son of High Chaparral’s athletic daughter Belle Rose opened her account over a mile at her third start, at the inaugural meeting held on the Vaal Classic track on Thursday.
Thursday marked the 109th renewal of the time-honoured Chester Vase. Derby favourite US Army Ranger won the race in a titanic tussle making it 7 wins out of 10 for Ballydoyle’s Aidan O’Brien.
Summerhill’s young resident sire Golden Sword, the only son of High Chaparral at stud in South Africa, has seen his full-brother, All Body And Soul, get his second in Ireland over 2400m for trainer Tracey Collins. The 2012 gelding has had just five starts, winning twice and placing once.
The last roll of the Golden Sword dice for this season takes place at the Emperors Palace Ready To Run Sale at Summerhill on Tuesday, 23rd February.
The bare numbers from Sunday’s Emperors Palace Ready To Run Sale were a mirror image of the state of the local economy, with a strong upper end, a muddled middle, and a tough lower end. Like racehorse sales the world over, the wealthy are impervious to the vagaries of financial meltdowns, and our old adage of “one rich man doing what he has to do to beat another” was in excellent health yesterday.
Better judges than ourselves have labelled Golden Sword's foals the toast of last season.
One thing you can't deny Greig Muir, is his sense of humour. When Golden Sword's acquisition for our stallion barn was first announced, he was quick to quip "There hasn't been this much excitement about a sword since King Arthur wrenched one from a rock."
've attended Ready To Run sales all over the world, and remembering the remoteness of yesterday's location and the logistics involved in achieving this, I have never seen a more beautifully appointed venue anywhere
This year's Summerhill two-year-olds, in terms of their performances so far, rank with the best former graduates of this farm, and by some measures, they may even be the best.
The fact that the "white smoke" from the de Kock yard is also signalling Golden Sword's pre-eminence, confirms the beatification of his stock.
On Sunday, Summerhill held its 32nd annual Stallion Day at the School of Equine Management Excellence, and the occasion was dignified by the presence of heads of state, cabinet ministers, representatives of two royal families, close on 20 different countries and the usual multitude of guests.