Bloodstock South Africa had another tremendous day at Hollywoodbets Greyville on Saturday, with BSA graduates claiming no fewer than four graded stakes races on the day. Trainer Sean Tarry had a day to remember and saddled BSA alumni Future Pearl and Mrs Geriatrix to win Saturday’s G3 DStv Gold Vase (3000m) and G2 Zulu Kingdom Explorer Golden Slipper (1400m) respectively, with both horses ridden to victory by Richard Fourie.
The Drakenstein Stud bred Future Pearl made it his second graded win from his last three starts when he bounded clear to win the 2023 Gold Vase as he liked by over two and three-quarter lengths at the expense of fellow Bloodstock South Africa purchase Fight Song.
Racing for Antony and Angela Beck, the progressive three-year-old, an impressive winner of the G3 World Sports Betting Gold Bowl back in May, has now won four of 13 starts for earnings of R567 625. A son of Drakenstein’s four time G1 winning stallion, and former Horse Of The Year, Futura, Future Pearl was a R525 000 purchase from the 2021 National Yearling Sale.
Future Pearl, who is out of the Al Mufti sired G1 Woolavington 2200 runner up Arabian Pearl, looks set to play a leading role in the Gold Cup at the end of this month.
The Clifton Stud bred Mrs Geriatrix all but ensured herself an Equus Award when she ran out a convincing winner of Saturday’s G2 Zulu Kingdom Explorer Golden Slipper, while accounting for a field of highly promising two-year-old fillies. Unbeaten in four starts going into Saturday’s race, the Sean Tarry trained filly was coming off a win in the G1 Allan Robertson Championship, and she duly made it a hatrick of graded stakes wins with a polished, near three and three-quarter lengths win in Saturday’s contest. Remarkably, BSA alumni filled the first three placings in the Golden Slipper this year, with Mrs Geriatrix beating Rascova and Egyptian Mau into second and third placings respectively.
Now unbeaten in five starts, Mrs Geriatrix, who races for the Magical Lady Syndicate, was a R200 000 buy from the 2022 National Yearling Sale.
A daughter of outstanding sire, and former National Sale graduate, Vercingetorix, Mrs Geriatrix is out of the Kahal mare Velvet Glove, herself a full-sister to G2 Joburg Spring Challenge/G3 Spring Spree Stakes hero Prince Of Kahal.
The brilliant Vercingetorix enjoyed more graded stakes success on Saturday when his son Gladatorian stormed home to cause a 50-1 upset in the G2 Post Merchants (1200m) for Stuart Ferrie and Sean Veale. Racing for Messrs the Late Agasthamuni Gujadhur, E G Hart de Keating, M L Jean Hardy & M J L Nairac, the three-year-old made amends for an unplaced effort last time out when flying up late to catch favourite, and former G1 Gold Medallion winner, Thunderstruck and score by a neck.
Gladatorian, who had won the Listed In Full Flight Stakes two starts back, was bred by Erasmus Thoroughbreds and the gelding was a R400 000 buy from the 2021 National Yearling Sale.
Varsfontein Stud’s outstanding sire Gimmethegreenlight, whose progeny also include this season’s unbeaten star two-year-old (and BSA purchase) Lucky Lad, was responsible for the first two home in Saturday’s G2 Durban Golden Horseshoe (1400m), with Bloodstock South Africa purchase Sandringham Summit flying up late to best tote favourite, and fellow Bloodstock South African buy, Gimmeanotherchance by nearly half a length. Remarkably, the first three home (all BSA purchases) in the Golden Horseshoe, Sandringham Summit, Gimmeanotherchance and Guy Gibson, were all bred by Varsfontein Stud! Now a two time winner from just four starts, Sandringham Summit looks a hugely exciting prospect for trainer David Nieuwenhuizen.
Owned by Rakesh Singh, Sandringham Summit was a R1 700 000 buy from last year’s National Yearling Sale. The promising colt, a half-brother to Clifton Stud’s new sire, and multiple graded stakes winner, Eden Roc, is out of the Captain Al sired G2 Odessa Stud Fillies Championship winner Townsend. Remarkably, Eden Roc had also won the Golden Horseshoe, when he triumphed in the 2018 renewal.
The Bloodstock SA Sales Cup (Fillies) and Bloodstock SA Sales Cup (Colts & Geldings) were won by Betula and Main Defender respectively, with both looking to be two-year-olds of considerable promise. The Stuart Pettigrew trained Betula was given a fine ride by Diego De Gouveia to land Saturday’s 1300m contest by a short-head over Oriental Bouquet with promising recent Listed Hollywoodbets Super League Devon Air Stakes winner Secret Identity beaten just over half a length into third spot. Remarkably, both Betula and Oriental Bouquet are daughters of Mauritzfontein’s resident sire Danon Platina, whose first two-year-olds have made such a big impression this season.
Bred by Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfontein, Betula (who has now won twice from just four starts) is owned by Messrs T Kung, B A Lane, Paul Marks, Anton Marx & Gary Player. The filly, a R160 000 buy from the 2022 National Yearling Sale, is out of the Fastnet Rock mare Boxwood Bouwer, a half-sister to G1 Irish Oaks runner up Venus De Milo.
Trainer Tony Peter looks to have a very smart two-year-old to his name in the form of Main Defender. The latter made it three wins from three starts when running out a comfortable winner of Saturday’s Bloodstock SA Sales Cup (C &G) (1300m) under jockey Craig Zackey. A R140 000 buy from the 2022 Cape Yearling Sale, the gelded Main Defender had won the Highveld Winter Juvenile Stakes last time out. Owned by John Habib, the Jagessar Ltd bred Main Defender is a son of Pathfork and the Judpot mare Alessia.