SPORTING Post covered Saturday’s Spies stable double as follows:
Hollywoodbets-sponsored trainer Corne Spies and his bang in-form team rounded off a rewarding week that included a successful Emperors Palace National 2yo Sale, with two nice winners at Turffontein on Saturday.
The Spies double included a gutsy victory by their Potala Palace flyer Singforafa (Craig Zackey) in the Listed Gardenia Stakes.
The 4yo now takes on the males and goes for the New Turf Carriers Gr3 Merchants on Gauteng Summer Cup day.
Carrying joint top weight of 61,5kgs, the 9-2 Singforafa produced her customary forward charge style of running in the 1000m feature on Saturday and dug deep late in the race to hold off a flying challenge by the well-backed favourite True To Life, who failed by a neck.
Gavin van Zyl’s KZN raider Vernichey finished top of the sophomore class, just over a half length back in third.
The winner clocked 57,15 secs and will now be aimed at the Gr3 Merchants on Summer Cup Day, rather than the World Sports Betting Gr3 Magnolia Handicap.
Corne explained that he would have been happier to let Singforafa take on her own sex, but that she would have to carry 65kgs.
“I don’t think it’s fair to ask her to lumber 65kgs. It’s a great pity that a nice sprinting filly is stopped in her tracks now. So I will probably run her in the Merchants against the boys. She is most effective over 1000m and the Merchants is 1160m. So it’s not ideal. But she is tough and loves a fight!” added the trainer, who said he felt that his charge was slightly overrated by the handicappers – despite the fact that she had won well.
Singforafa has won 5 races with 6 places from 18 starts for stakes of R562 375.
The daughter of Ridgemont Highlands’ massive value Singspiel sire Potala Palace, was bred by the late Nico Swart from the thrice winning Whistling Wood mare First Whistle.
The winner races in the silks of Corne’s son Xander, who was enjoying his first lead-in of the flying filly.
The second Spies winner was the yard’s recent acquisition Golden Pheasant (Antonius Pius, Muzi Yeni up) who races for Heversham Park’s Nigel Riley and Fred Brons.
“He’s doing well with us, he is a strong horse who can win again, he ran second to what looks a decent three-year-old last time and beat a good field today, including our own star filly Cockney Pride, who got baulked in a seven-horse field!
On the Emperors Palace National 2yo Sale, Corne said he was thrilled and very happy with the outcome.
Corne says he will be watching the CTS Ready To Run Gallops on Tellytrack on Monday from Cape Town.
“We have to stay on the wheel. That CTS sale has also produced some really nice horses. It’s an online sale and we will adapt accordingly. Flexibility is the new normal!” he laughed.
The CTS Ready To Run, Unbroken 2 Year Old & Mixed Sale will be held in partnership with Gavelhouse.com on Sunday 29 November.