Picture: REUTERS
Picture: REUTERS

If champion trainer Sean Tarry wins the Gauteng Summer Cup at Turffontein on November 28 it will be a four-timer even the famous football club Manchester United has not achieved.

A check of the record books reveals United have been Premier League champions on a number of occasions, notably three years in a row from 2007 to 2009, as well as three years out of four with success in 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2003. However, never a four-timer.

Tarry, 52,  has won the grade 1 Summer Cup for the last three years, with Leige in 2017, Tilbury Fort in 2018 and Zilzaal in 2019.

In 2020, the Randjesfontein trainer has assembled another army for an assault on the R425,000 prize money, with his stable responsible for nine of the 49 early entries.

His nine horses entered are previous winners Tilbury Fort and Zilzaal, as well as Tierra Del Fuego, Victoria Paige, Cornish Pomodoro, Keep Smiling, Shenanigans, Tree Tumbo and Nebrass.

Victoria Paige and Tree Tumbo are in action at the Vaal on Tuesday and their performances will be closely monitored with the Summer Cup only two months away.

Victoria Paige takes on just six rivals in the fifth race and should have little more than an exercise gallop against a weak field. Her form last season included a close third behind horse-of-the-year Summer Pudding in the Gauteng Fillies Guineas.

In fact, she had the misfortune to bump Paul Peter’s star three times last term, but there are no fillies of that calibre in Tuesday’s line-up. The only horse with a chance of upsetting the favourite is Ashley Fortune’s three-year-old Elusive Woman.

Owner Michael Javett has been a huge supporter of racing for decades and went up to R500,000 to buy Silvano’s son, Tree Tumbo.

The fact that Tarry has entered the four-year-old for the Summer Cup suggests he believes the current one-time winner has a big future.

With the likely favourite Red Ten an absentee, Tree Tumbo faces just five rivals and can notch a second win provided he can beat Johan Janse van Vuuren’s runner Leopold, a son of Pomodoro.

Gavin Lerena takes over at the controls on Leopold, who will strip a fit horse following his close second behind Seventh Gear in August.

Leopold’s stablemate, Mohican, missed an engagement last week and it is interesting that Raymond Danielson, who rode Leopold last time out, now switches to the Argentinian-bred gelding. It would be unwise to leave the four-year-old out of exotic perms.

Trainer Candice Dawson sends four runners to the Free State track, and the pick of her quartet could be Charmz Luck in the final leg of the Pick 6.

This daughter of Pathfork, who finished third in a race won by Summer Pudding in 2019, appeals as an each-way bet as she ran a close third in her most recent outing and has a favourable draw.

The likely favourite in this 1,600m event is St John Gray’s consistent filly Ululate, who is chasing a four-timer, while well-drawn stablemate Lets Talk gives the yard good back-up.

In The Game — this column’s selection on her last two starts — is knocking at the door with two third placings, but the six-year-old is battling to find the No 1 box.


1st Race: (7) Purple Panther (10) Wildeye (2) Procrastinator (1) Marrakech

2nd Race: (3) Bold Leah (10) Pin It (1) Oksana (2) In Haste

3rd Race: (9) Dr Dolittle (1) Castle Corner (2) Summerdale (8) Dark Vision

4th Race: (1) Aberdare (10) Flying First Class (2) Liverpool Legend (7) Electric Boots

5th Race: (1) Victoria Paige (3) Elusive Woman (5) Sweet And Spicy (4) Shezaglo

6th Race: (2) Tree Tumbo (1) Leopold (4) Mohican (7) Back To Black

7th Race: (8) Rise As One (5) Heart Of A Legend (1) Soul Connection (3) Saviour

8th Race: (12) Charmz Luck (7) Ululate (4) Lets Talk (10) In The Game


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