Andrew Fortune makes most horses look good. Some even make him look good now and then. The latter may have applied at Fairview on Friday when the Var filly Cup Cake got up in a nailbiter to win the R75 000 Guineas Plate, a non black-type event run over the turf 1400m for 3yo fillies.
Legend has it that the talented Justin Snaith trained galloper was named by Crabbia racing manager Emma Rorke after a term of endearment reserved for the trainer’s hardworking brother, Jono.
Whatever the case, the goodlooking filly has a fighting spirit that belies her cute name – and the heart of a lion!
And the tireless talent of Andrew Fortune proved the perfect foil, in the process registering a hat-trick of winners on the afternoon and saving a multitude of Pick 6 tickets, who looked doomed when ‘Bling’ almost did his thing.
It was S’manga Khumalo who nearly upset the party in the Pick 6 opener as, after leading for a long way on the Yvette Bremner-trained Agterskot, he got the daughter of Ashaawes to take her second breath and rally strongly in the final stages.
But Cup Cake was in capable hands and she held on to win by a head as the long-time leader came right back at her – to make it a really nice exacta achievement for the Boland Stud.
The winner’s time was 87,87 secs, with Kanara, one of the lesser fancied of the Alan Greeff quartet, running on well into third – her fancied stablemate Love Everlasting looked dangerous late, but plodded and ran out of the money.
Another Snaith runner in the Crabbia red and black – that of Avontuur stallion Oratorio’s Australian-bred daughter Bella’s Empire, moved up on the rail, after making up plenty of ground, and ran fourth – a decent effort over a distance seemingly short of her best.
A R350 000 National Yearling Sale graduate, Cup Cake has now won 2 of her 6 starts with 4 places and stakes of R112 700.
She was bred by Boland Stud and is out of the three-time winning Elliodor mare, Cuddle Me, who has been a prolific producer of winners.
It was an entertaining afternoon of racing with the Ascot Stud bred Go Deputy colt, Welsh Emperor, an eyecatching winner in the first. He is trained by Alan Greeff and gave Greg Cheyne an armchair first leg of his winning double.
Cheyne shared the double honours with S’manga Khumalo – but Fortune was the big winner.