Australian-bred Willow Magic looked the deal in Tuesday evening’s R250 000 Gr3 Tommy Hotspur Handicap run over 1000m at Turffontein. But Mike De Kock pulled a 20 to 1 rabbit out of the hat in the form of the speedy Moofeed, to upstage the odds and rock the exotics.
It is not every day that a Mike De Kock runner jumps at such generous odds and this also happened, like the favourite, to be a 4yo Australian-bred colt. But that observation wouldn’t have helped the Willow Magic supporters.
After his electrifying return to action three weeks back, following a 16 month break, the Gr1 winning Willow Magic came into this speed handicap on less favourable terms than in his comeback and that, coupled with the second run syndrome, may just have contributed to his downfall.
That said, he was not entirely disgraced either, giving the winner 8kgs and only finishing a neck behind after switching in and out a few times, in running.
Willow Magic was tardily away and appeared to lack pace early on. By the time he got into the race, S’manga Khumalo was on his bicycle and Moofeed was home and hosed.
Louis Goosen-trained One Man’s Dream beat Willow Magic in the chase for second and ran a cracker in the circumstances.
Moofeed was scoring his first stakes victory and registered a quick time of 56,10 secs.
He was bred in Australia by Epsom Lodge and Coolmore.
He is by Danehill’s five time Gr1 winning son Duke Of Marmalade, who stands at Drakenstein Stud and won from 1400m to 2400m.
Moofeed is out of the Encosta De Lago mare Dizzy De Lago, which makes him a half brother to his very well performed stablemates, Musir (by Redoute’s Choice) and Merhee (by Elusive Quality).
Moofeed has won 5 of his 9 starts with 1 place and took his earnings to R363 250.
Don’t write off Willow Magic!
Gr3 Tommy Hotspur Handicap (SAf-Gr3)
Turffontein, South Africa, February 10, R250k, 1000m, turf, good, 56.01
1 – MOOFEED (AUS), 52.0, b c 4, Duke Of Marmalade (IRE) – Dizzy De Lago (AUS) by Encosta De Lago (AUS). Owner Al Adiyaat South Africa (Pty) Ltd; Breeder bred in Australia; trainer MF de Kock; jockey S Khumalo
2 – One Man’s Dream (SAF), 58.5, b g 4, Greys Inn (USA) – Ember Dream (SAF) by Flaming Rock (IRE)
3 – Willow Magic (AUS), 60.0, ch c 4, Dubawi (IRE) – La Willow (AUS) by Tierce (AUS)
Margins: 0.20, 0.10, 3.45