Sean Tarry well on the way to securing another title
The main challenger, Justin Snaith, is about R1.5m adrift in stakes earned for the season that ends in July
After two more big-race wins at Turffontein on Wednesday, the 15-20 on offer for Sean Tarry retaining the trainers’ title looks decidedly generous.
Before Wednesday’s meeting, Tarry’s runners had earned more than R11.1m in stake money, with Justin Snaith, his nearest rival, on a total of R9.6m.
Three-year-old Ikigai had always looked the right horse for the grade 2 Gauteng Guineas and the son of Vercingetorix rewarded his followers (and Business Day readers) by posting a decisive victory over Mike de Kock’s runner Frosted Gold.
Top apprentice Luke Ferraris partnered Ikigai to victory in the familiar colours of leading owner Chris van Niekerk and the youngster was also on the mark with Silver Gold in the Wolf Power 1600.
But Phumelela Gaming & Leisure might not have to pay out the R2m bonus to Van Niekerk as both Tarry and Ferraris have reservations about Ikigai staying the 2,450m of the SA Derby.
The 1,800m SA Classic is the next outing for Ikigai and — as he was not stopping at the end of Wednesday’s race — he should not be inconvenienced by the extra 200m.
In contrast, trainer Paul Peter and jockey Warren Kennedy will feel the Triple Tiara bonus for three-year-old fillies is firmly in their sights after Summer Pudding’s game — but narrow — win in the Wilgerbosdrift Fillies Guineas.
Summer Pudding was well supported in the betting, but her backers were given a fright by the outsider Rio’s Winter from the small stable of Stephen Moffatt.
Piere Strydom has won many feature races in his career and he got the best out of Rio’s Winter to be beaten by a neck.
Joint-owner Clinton Lines was full of praise for Moffatt’s handling of the filly and said: “Stephen was adamant we had a serious shout against Summer Pudding and Mill Queen and he was 100% correct.”
The Tarry bandwagon should roll on at Turffontein on Saturday and the champion trainer sends out three runners in the sixth race over 1,450m. The trio are Warrior’s Rest (Ferraris), Tierra Del Fuego (Raymond Danielson) and Matador Man (Denis Schwarz).
Both Warrior’s Rest and Skitt Skizzle’s son Tierra Del Fuego go into the race boasting good form. The former ran second to the useful Mardi Gras last time out, and the latter has won four of his past five starts.
Warrior’s Rest runs particularly well for Raymond Danielson and should be a safe banker in the place accumulator. Matador Man is having his second start in six months, so looks unlikely to beat his stablemates.
Though Geoff Woodruff’s six-year-old Zouaves will have his supporters, the main threat to the Tarry trio may be Weiho Marwing’s five-year-old mare La Bella Mia. She is taking on male rivals, but rates an each-way chance, with her apprentice rider’s allowance reducing her weight to just 50.5kg.
Tarry also has a strong hand in the fifth race in which he saddles Return Flight and In The Dance. Kennedy has got the call to partner the first-named, but Ferraris might have his measure on In The Dance.
1st Race: (4) Milford Sound (5) Curvation (1) Flower Season (3) Fireworks
2nd Race: (2) General Jackson (1) Golden Tune (12) Putins Promise (3) Fast Draw
3rd Race: (3) Binky (14) Wishonaire (13) Grey Flyer (15) Carry Me Carrie
4th Race: (2) Al Mutawakel (1) Chijmes (3) Divine Odyssey (7) Seville Orange
5th Race: (2) In The Dance (1) Return Flight (4) Saragon (7) Machali
6th Race: (4) Tierra Del Fuego (5) Warrior’s Rest (7) La Bella Mia (2) Zouaves
7th Race: (2) Donny G (6) Ocean City (3) Scoop (9) Gemcutter
8th Race: (4) African Adventure (1) Our Man In Havana (2) Rocky Path (6) Master Supreme
9th Race: (11) Fayrooz (13) Smoking Hot (3) Varquera (2) Super Duper