Owner Chris Van Niekerk’s fast improving ATM General Sherman scored his first significant success with a superb late run to win Saturday’s R150 000 Listed Wolf Power 1600 at Turffontein.
Well ridden by Raymond Danielson, General Sherman maintained his record of earning at every one of his starts and is within touching distance of recovering his purchase price. Something one imagines will happen in the near future.
Geoff Woodruff’s Lockheed Jetstar went off a 33-10 favourite, but the stable appeared rather flat on the day, and he made no show at all. On the flipside, the General went off a generous 12-1.
The race was run in two stages with City Of Bells and Directorate dashing off like two scalded cats split the field. Turning for home the two frontrunners still had a seven length advantage over the second pack led by Amur Affair and Lockheed Jetstar.
At this stage General Sherman was quite some way out of his ground with only two horses in Across The Ice and Emperor Augustus behind him.
At the 400m marker Amur Affair surged into contention while Directorate was still hanging on for dear life as Emperor Augustus and General Sherman commenced their onslaughts.
It was only in the final 100m where Raymond Danielson appeared to have clinched matters as the smart gelding put his head in front.
General Sherman flew late to catch and beat the De Kock filly Amur Affair going away by a half length. His winning time of 98,64 secs was something to the tune of over 4 seconds outside the course record.
Emperor Augustus ran on late for third, while Directorate somehow stayed around long enough to grab fourth. His running mate City Of Bells was slightly less productive, and ran stone last.
The KZN visitor Orbit War finished sixth , 4,75 lengths behind, while the wellbacked King’s Entourage had every chance just behind him.
Trained by Sean Tarry, General Sherman was bred by Nigel Page and is by Strike Smartly out of the twice- winning Fort Wood mare, Wild Almond.
He is quite a looker and cost R380 000 at the National Yearling Sale. He took his earnings to R302 225 with this victory.
While he looks like he will stay ten furlongs, he is interestingly a full brother to the talented seven-time winning sprinter, Two Tone.
He could make his presence felt in the feature season that lies ahead of us.