When a horse wins its first race after sixty starts, the connections either know something we don’t or they deserve a very special award for perserverance. It is thus quite amazing to record that the Almushtarak filly Aggravacious broke her duck at Kenilworth on 23 July.
Congratulations are due to her owner-trainer Gary Collins, who is known to some as the youngest rock-and–roller to grace the, at times, tumultuous and colourful history books of Cape racing. Collins is a self-made businessman who trains racehorses as a fun and side interest and any attempt to rationalise or justify the motivation in keeping a battler this long, will fail. But the operative word is certainly ‘fun’, as long as one has a few pennies to throw around!
They say that patience is one of the golden virtues when dealing with thoroughbred racehorses. But Aggravacious takes that to new levels! Her name has often come up during discussion amongst punters about racing oddities. Not quite Ripleys or the unexplained mysteries stuff, but not too far off that. She started her career with an eyecatching third in January 2009, and has run eighteen times this year alone. She seems to run every week and has been tried over distances from 1000m to 2000m. She won the WPOTA Workriders’ Grooms Plate Maiden Plate for fillies and mares over 1200m today, with a late flourish under workrider Qhwaba. Grooms race are normally weak but seemingly true-run races. Will she win again? She made us look a bit silly today but we will reserve judgement on that score. Nothing quite like a woman scorned!
The Listed Winter Juvenile Stakes over 1600m saw trainer Joey Ramsden’s faith in his Langerman runner-up Master Mascus vindicated, when Glen Hatt punched the handsome Lammerskraal Stud –bred son of Western Winter out to a well-deserved second win. The R1 million rand plus National Sale graduate had won his first start but has had to be content with placed cheques since then. These were not bad efforts though as he had finished close up to Depardieu in the Cape Nursery and was then downed narrowly in the Langerman by his highly rated stablemate, Variety Club.
Riverworld Stud is a beautiful horsey haven situated on the pristine banks of the Berg River between Paarl and Franschhoek. The Stud’s boss Juan Van Heerden’s gold and maroon silks enjoyed some halcyon days in racing in recent years with top racemares like Badger’s Gift but he has had a quiet time of it of late. That all changed very quickly this afternoon though as Riverworld celebrated a rather unique hat-trick, when they bred the winners of the third, fourth and fifth races. Van Heerden’s own filly, the Lake Coniston three year old, Lake Drawsko, named after the second biggest lake in Poland, won the third leg of the treble. The speedy filly beat the well-performed, but tired looking State Blue, and the top-class Emmajo, in a smart display under Richard Fourie.
Glen Kotzen and his vastly experienced assistant Gavin Blake are enjoying a rich vein of form and they enjoyed a nice double on the day with two fillies who look above average. Dynasty was the sire of his first winner, with debutante Blouberg Beach winning the Maiden Juvenile Plate for fillies over 1200m, in great style She is owned by Lynn Matthysen and Roz Mardon, who are interestingly movie-set caterers, and who prepared the meals on the set of the Clint Eastwood movie, Invictus. Their full sister to the talented Beaches won a very good race as Robert Kathi hit the front early on her and she resisted all challenges, including that of the favourite Dumani, who had the advantage of experience.
Brandon Morgenrood has found his niche with the Kotzen team and he continues to boot home winners with regularity. He rode a very confident race to get the Silvano filly Wings Of Fortune home in the Pick Six opener, a Maiden Plate over 1400m. Hugo Hattingh’s filly was returning from a ten month break and it was a great training feat in the circumstances. She had been supported in the betting at her previous three starts, and obviously puts it in at home. The Marshall –trained Nysaean filly Emily Moon should not be long in winning as she ran on well for second.
Phillipi trainer Riaan Van Reenen has done wonders with the lion-hearted Windrush mare A Daughters Legacy, and she made it a winning swansong when winning the Gr3 Final Fling Stakes over 1800m, for the second year running. The D Cohen & Sons bred bay leaves racing with a very proud record of eight wins from thirty starts for R700 000 in prize money, and makes her R90 000 price tag look very sweet. She should make a fantastic broodmare and word on the ground is that she will be visiting Var one of these fine days. Grant Van Niekerk rode a great race on her to hold Cause To Believe at bay, with the Andries Steyn trained Mystery Dame, who was way out at the weights, running a dapper third.
.Final Fling S. (SAf-G3) (7/23)
Kenilworth, South Africa, July 23, R138.000, 1800m, turf, good, 1.52.55 (CR 1.48.95).
1 – A DAUGHTERS LEGACY (SAF), 60.0, b m 5, Windrush – Mississippi Masala (SAF) by Elliodor (FR). Owner R van Reenen, G D R Evenleigh, G S Gorgulho, F J Louw & C S Swart; breeder D Cohen & sons (SAF); trainer R van Reenen; jockey G Van Niekerk (R91.500)
2 – Cause To Believe (SAF), 58.5, b f 3, Caesour – Persuasive Reason (SAF) by Rainbow Dream (FR)
3 – Mystery Dame (SAF), 60.0, b m 6, Jet Master (SAF) – Dame Kiri (SAF) by Flaming Rock (IRE)
Margins: 1, ¾, 1¾
Also ran: Scarlet Sky (SAF) 60.0, Light The Moon (SAF) 60.0, Maxixe (SAF) 58.5, We Three (SAF) 60.0, Secret Pleasure (SAF) 60.0, Tassie Belle (SAF) 60.0, Field Flower (SAF) 60.0