Wehann Smith — the new CEO of Cape Thoroughbred Sales (CTS) — is bullish that buyers at next week’s Lanzerac Ready-To-Run Sale at Durbanville racecourse have "realistic chances of racing for big money next year".
Smith, head of Kuda Insurance, was appointed to his new position in September. He said at the time that "with CTS acquiring a significant stake in Kuda, an overarching focus is the streamlining of a partnership to the advantage of both businesses resulting in increased benefits for clients".
A total of 148 two-year-olds — by 47 different sires — will come under the hammer in Cape Town on November 17 (starting at 6pm). Prospective buyers can eye the youngsters at the gallops on November 16, starting at 9.30am.
"More than 10% of horses sold at the Ready-To-Run Sale have a chance of making next year’s co-joined features purely based on numbers, which is not an opportunity that presents itself at every thoroughbred sale," he said.
All of the lots on offer qualify for the 2018 Kuda Sprint at Kenilworth on Sun Met day and the 2018 Lanzerac Ready-To-Run Stakes, which carries a stake of R2.5m.
Safe Harbour is co-owned by Smith and CTS chairman Chris Van Niekerk. The daughter of Elusive Fort is proof that this sale produces bargain buys as she cost R180,000 and to date has earned over R2.5m in stakes.
The Roll-Of-Honour of CTS Ready-To-Run graduates is impressive and 67 of the lots on offer qualify for the two CTS Millions races in 2019.
All the top sires are represented at Friday’s sale, including Dynasty, Silvano, Trippi and ill-fated Captain Al. A possible salestopper is a Dynasty colt who should get the catalogues waving as he is related to multiple grade1 winner Bela-Bela, out of Captain Al’s champion daughter and triple grade1 winner All Is Secret — a sister to grade1-winning two-year-old The Secret Is Out.
Silvano also has five two-year-olds on the sale and include a three-parts brother to Durban July winning sire Bold Silvano and grade3 winner, Silvan Star. Now dead champion sire Captain’s Al has a total of 11 of his progeny up for sale and they include a filly bred on the same cross as grade1 winners Captain America and William Longsword.
Although the fare at the Vaal on Saturday hardly gets the juices flowing, the R800,000 Dynasty colt Big Parade looks a Pick 6 banker as Mike de Kock’s three-year-old takes on some modest rivals in the fourth race.
Another possible banker bet is Alec Laird’s filly Ossetra, who will be a warm order to open her account in the 1,600m ninth race. Our Biscuit, who ran fourth last time out, should appreciate the step up in distance.