IN racing, some days truly are diamonds and most others are stones – Tobie Spies enjoyed a “diamond day” at Greyville Saturday with two one-two finishes in minor features, and a sizeable chunk of prize money to go along with it.
Two-year-old What You Are (18-10 favourite) ran on well under Corne Orffer to win the Listed Devon Air Stakes over 1400m from vastly improved stablemate Sapphire Rock (45-1). Half an hour later Van Halen put it all together again. He also ran on strongly to defeat stablemate Basilius in the Durban Dash over 1100m, another winner for Orffer.
Tobie said: “A wonderful day for us, it’s not every day one gets to raid Durban so successfully especially in the KZN feature season. We’ve had a good run in Durban this season, when Singforafa won the Strelitzia Stakes at Greyville in May she beat our other filly Me Time into second. Long may it continue!”
What You Are, who races for Tobie and Archar Head’s Cape Leopard Trust, will be aimed next at the Gr3 Golden Slipper on Durban July day, and she will run provided she cracks a good draw. If she doesn’t, the Gr1 Thekwini Stakes on 27 July will be her next mission.
“What You Are was unlucky not to have run in the first three in the Gr1 Allan Robertson Championship, she is a filly with a ability,” said Tobie.
What You Are was a R70,000 purchase from the CTS March Sale in 2018. She is by first-season stallion Captain Of All from Twinkle Star, by Counter Action, and was bred by Terry Andrews of Sorrento Stud.
The erratic Van Halen, meanwhile, has now won 5 from 16 and he won’t stop here. He may go for a race on July Day too, there is a sprint that was programmed last year. Tobie said: “It seems that Van Halen runs better when he has cover. He likes to run at something. When he sees daylight, he doesn’t start the engine.”
Basilius has always been in the shadow of his Gr1 winning stablemate, but he’s a talented horse too and, in Tobie’s words, “may get his nose up in a small feature race too.”