Gary Player hopes for racing success on his 85th birthday
Golf legend Gary Player, who celebrates his 85th birthday on Sunday, will be looking at some of the horses he has bred to mark the occasion.
First up is four-year-old Kayla’s Champ, who bids to follow up her recent Turffontein win when she takes on seven rivals in the eighth race at the Vaal on Thursday.
Player bred this daughter of Noordhoek Flyer and, most importantly, he will be selling her half-brother (by Ideal World) at the Emperors Palace National Two-Year-Old Sale at Germiston on November 12-13.
Paul Matchett trains Kayla’s Champ so he is sure to run his expert eye over the colt, who is one of four lots being sold by Millstream Farm on behalf of Player.
The chief threat to Kayla’s Champ in Thursday’s race is likely to be the year-younger Sweet And Spicy from Stuart Pettigrew’s Randjesfontein stable. He saddles the unbeaten Anything Goes in Saturday’s Emperors Palace Ready-To-Run Cup at Turffontein.
Even more important for Player is Saturday’s Charity Mile, with trainer Tony Rivalland raiding with another horse bred by Player, five-year-old Tristful.
On his last start, Tristful turned in a sound effort when finishing fifth, beaten by only a length and three-quarters by Golden Ducat in the grade 1 Champions Cup at Greyville at the end of August. Unfortunately, the gelding has a bad draw in Saturday’s race.
At the National Two-Year-Old Sale, Player is offering a half-sister to Tristful (winner of the grade 3 Byerley Turk and second in the Greyville 1900) by Elusive Fort. The sire’s progeny have been in good form in the past few months.
Another Player entry on the sale is a What A Winter filly who is a half-sister to the useful Var’s Vicky. What A Winter is the sire of several top-class performers, including Clouds Unfold, Warrior’s Rest and Equus Champion Sprinter Russet Air.
Champion trainer Sean Tarry sends an army of runners to Saturday’s big meeting at Turffontein and nine of his team will be in action at the Vaal on Thursday.
The pick of Tarry’s runners should be owner Mike Rattray’s filly Maple Sugar, who went down by only a shorthead on her debut four weeks ago. The daughter of Ideal World can go one better by beating Brooklyn Bridge and Zodiac Princess in the fourth race.
In the third race, Tarry has booked champion jockey Lyle Hewitson to partner the three-year-old filly Aryaam. She also made a pleasing debut when second to Winters Power at Turffontein.
Anne Boleyn — named after the second queen of Henry VIII beheaded in 1536 — is faring better than her namesake and has more than recouped the R70,000 she cost as a yearling. The four-year-old represents the Paul Peter stable in the final event on the card and should go close in the hands of champion jockey Warren Kennedy.
Sheer Talent is bidding for a five-timer and will have her supporters once again, but Wylie Wench may pose the main threat to Anne Boleyn reverting to a shorter distance.
1st Race: (1) Carephilly (3) Ashanti (2) Flower Of Scotland (4) Incognito
2nd Race: (14) Aneski (3) Stormy Seas (12) Sonny Quinn (5) Sergeant York
3rd Race: (6) Aryaam (10) Paton’s Tears (12) Petunia (2) Miss Venezuela
4th Race: (14) Maple Sugar (6) Brooklyn Bridge (1) Zodiac Princess (11) Bebop
5th Race: (3) Dusted Donut (9) Have A Go Jo (7) Captain Scabiosa (8) Crackon
6th Race: (6) Christopher Robin (5) ExpressfromtheUs (4) Full Mast (8) Seven Patriots
7th Race: (7) Oscar Wilde (5) Ice Lord (12) Smoke (14) War Jewel
8th Race: (2) Kayla’s Champ (7) Sweet And Spicy (6) Shezaglo (3) Empress Josephine
9th Race: (10) Whorly Whorly (2) Fired Up (3) Captain Of Tortuga (5) Dan The Lad
10th Race: (2) Anne Boleyn (3) Wylie Wench (7) Sheer Talent (4) Eskimo Kisses
Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments?
Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.