Picture: 123RF/Nigel Baker
Picture: 123RF/Nigel Baker

Many of the country’s top studs are represented at Bloodstock SA’s Cape Yearling Sale to be held at the Mistico Equestrian Centre near Paarl on Friday.

A total of 181 yearlings will come under the hammer with the big incentive of possibly purchasing the winner of the inaugural Cape Yearling Sale Cup to be run on Cape Derby day in February 2021.

The vendors include Wilgerbosdrift Stud with 16 yearlings, Varsfontein Stud 12 (three as agent) and interesting drafts from Oldlands, Rosedene, Riverton and Sorrento Stud.

Wilgerbosdrift's draft includes six yearlings by Flower Alley whose stakes winners include Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another. The first lot in the ring is bred on the same cross as I’ll Have Another and the colt is out of a half-sister to four-time US grade 1 winner Emollient and Florida Derby runner-up Hofburg.

The same stud also offers four yearlings by their ill-fated stallion Soft Falling Rain. The quartet includes a colt out of a daughter of Cape Fillies Guineas winner Emerald Beauty.

Varsfontein Stud name their horses well and one of their offerings is Highest Honour, a filly by Gimmethegreenlight out of a stakes-winning daughter of Durban July hero Dynasty.

Another of Varsfontein’s stallions, Master Of My Fate, is well represented on the sale with 12 of his progeny including — towards the end of the sale — a colt out of a Western Winter half-sister to grade 1 winning two-year-old Forest Indigo.

Among the other studs there are yearlings by Querari, Elusive Fort and Master Of My Fate from Oldlands, six from Rosedene Stud including a three-parts sister to Legal Eagle, three from Riverton Stud by Pomodoro, Captain Of All and Coup De Grace and seven from Sorrento Stud, five of which are by Triple Crown victor Louis The King.

It has been well advertised that one of the graduates from this sale is Lucky Houdalakis’s star sprinter Mr Flood and another top performer includes Drakenstein Stud’s young stallion Gold Standard.

Bloodstock SA will be delighted that one of their 2017 National Yearling Sale graduates Seattle Choice, who cost R600,000, won for the combination of trainer Tony Millard and jockey Joao Moreira in Hong Kong last weekend.

The intriguing question surrounding Saturday’s 10-event programme at Turffontein is how many races will be won by the combination of trainer Paul Peter and jockey Warren Kennedy.

In early betting, runners from Peter’s stable, which has a total of 83 winners so far this season, are favourite in three of the six Pick Six races.

Riverstown, sixth in the recent Gauteng Guineas, will sport blinkers for the first time in the seventh race and tops the betting boards ahead of Sean Tarry’s filly Spiritofthegroove.

However, Spiritofthegroove has had a busy season and a bigger danger to Riverstown could be Callan Murray’s mount Palace Assembly. The gelding reverts to a shorter trip and his early price of 10-1 looks generous.

Though he won narrowly at Scottsville in January, Peter’s sprinter Rebel’s Champ looks a worthy favourite in the eighth race. His chief rival could be Paul Matchett’s filly Basadi Faith who will carry just 49kg.

Marshall Foch is another favourite for the Peter stable in the ninth race, but the three-time winner could be given a run for his money by Geoff Woodruff’s four-year-old, Theravada.

Selections

1st Race: (7) Phinda Mzala (9) Takagari (3) Magic Blaze (5) Master Of Disguise

2nd Race: (9) Powder Puff (11) Ululate (6) Magogo (3) Cloth Of Ice

3rd Race: (14) Wylie Wench (13) Dice The Bullet (6) Wallaa (5) Dark Song

4th Race: (9) Theatre Of Dreams (5) Mount Everest (1) Doublethink (2) Soul Connection

5th Race: (1) Untamed Tiger (5) Kratos Power (4) Tyrus Express (2) Spooky

6th Race: (2) All Of Me (3) Oden (8) Corvette Captain (7) Silver Master

7th Race: (2) Palace Assembly (1) Riverstown (4) Spiritofthegroove (5) Aqua Delta

8th Race: (1) Rebel's Champ (5) Basadi Faith (2) Mombela (8) Old Man Tyme

9th Race: (8) Theravada (1) Marshall Foch (7) Christopher Robin (3) Last Of A Legend

10th Race: (4) Full Mast (5) Carbon Atom (1) Soldier On (3) Captain Of Tortuga