Picture: 123RF/MARYART1
Picture: 123RF/MARYART1

There is one certainty about the 2019 Emperors Palace Ready To Run Sale scheduled for Germiston on November 3 — three prominent young men in racing will be taking a close look at Lot 79.

Mathew de Kock, son of legendary trainer Mike de Kock, Murray Makepeace and Michael Shea, son of former top jockey Kevin, enjoyed joyful days with their filly Takingthepeace and Summerhill Sales will be offering a half-brother to the grade 2 Fillies Guineas winner by Dubawi’s son, Willow Magic.

“Willow Magic is the only grade 1 winning son of Dubawi, the world’s No 1 stallion in 2015, in continental Africa. He combines the prepotency of Dubawi with a tough-as-teak Australian ‘mum’, said Summerhill Stud chief Mick Goss.

Down the years, Goss has come up with some intriguing names for thoroughbreds reared at Summerhill and the Willow Magic colt is no exception.

The youngster has been named Thamsanqa and it would appear the colt has been named after footballer Thamsanqa Gabuza, a striker for SuperSport United.

Champion trainer Sean Tarry did an excellent job with Willow Magic saddling the horse to a string of top performances including victory in the grade 2 Dingaans and second place in the grade 1 Champions Cup.

It will not have escaped Tarry's attention that the 145-lot sale at Germiston also includes a daughter of Willow Magic who is a half-sister to his Ready-To-Run Cup winner Vi Va Pi Pa.

Dubawi’s reputation as a leading stallion was enhanced with the performances of John Gosden-trained Too Darn Hot, who was the champion two-year-old in the UK in 2018 when his biggest success came in the grade 1 Dewhurst Stakes.

Too Darn Hot, owned by Andrew Lloyd Webber, also won the Prix Jean Prat in France and Sussex Stakes at Goodwood, but sadly the latter race was to be his last. A few days later, it was established he had suffered a hairline fracture of a hind cannon bone and he was retired to stand at Dalham Hall Stud in 2020.

Stud manager Simon Marsh said: “Too Darn Hot comprises everything the Lloyd Webbers set out to achieve. He has taken us all on an incredible journey and has everything you want in a stallion — talent, precocity, pedigree and looks.”

Another interesting lot on November’s sale — and one sure to interest Gary and Dean Alexander — is a daughter of Willow Magic who is a half-sister to the Alexanders SA Derby winner Hero’s Honour.

Other lots that should prove popular are a colt by Cape Guineas victor Act Of War, who is a half-brother to Ready-To-Run Cup winner Winter Star.

Many of the country’s leading stallions are represented on the sale including deceased former champion sire Dynasty. His filly out of the grade 2 Merchants winner Jackodore should sell for a good price.

The big carrot being dangled in front of prospective buyers at the Germiston sale is the latest announcement from Bob Yearham, COO of sponsors Emperors Palace, and Bloodstock SA that graduates will be racing for a gross stake of R1m in the Ready To Run Cup — both this year and next — with prize money payable down to 10th place.

With prize money being reduced in many racetracks worldwide — Chelmsford in the UK is the latest — raising the stake for the cup is a welcome shot in the arm for the sport.