Sun Met runner-up Last Winter is likely to enter quarantine at Kenilworth Racecourse by the middle of this month and only logistical issues now stand between the son of Western Winter and an international campaign.
Form Bloodstock’s Jehan Malherbe, who is acting on behalf of the smart 4yo’s owners Khaya Stables, told the Sporting Post on Friday that an answer was awaited on a flight confirmation that would allow Last Winter to depart for Mauritius in March.
“We are mindful that, given that the July ante-post betting has been published, the betting public would like to know what the situation is. The fact is that the connections have decided that they want Last Winter to undertake an international campaign. The paperwork has been done and now it is up to the agents and a flight confirmation.”
Malherbe said that ironically the handicapper had played his own part in making the decision to travel internationally.
“They gave him a 119 after the Met. He is a 2000m horse. So what is left here for him? The President’s Champions Challenge at Turffontein in May and then maybe the Champions Cup at Greyville in July,” he added.
And what about the Vodacom Durban July?
“While things can change, I would not recommend to Khaya Stables that they even go the July route, frankly. We would have to give lumps of weight all round. On the balance of things, we believe he deserves a chance to go out there and take them on in Hong Kong and Dubai. It is an exciting time for an owner who has been a staunch supporter of South African horseracing for many years,” he said.
The leading bloodstock consultant confirmed that Last Winter would do 28 days quarantine at Kenilworth, then 60 days in Mauritius before flying to England where he would join the horse population, and not be quarantined, but be confined to that country for 30 days.
Last Winter will be trained in his overseas campaign by Dean Kannemeyer, who has done a splendid job with the lightly raced colt so far.
“It is an honour and a privilege to take this horse onto the world stage. Naturally we will be relying on the experience and expertise of those who have done this often. It’s an exciting time for Khaya Stables and Dean Kannemeyer Racing,” said Kannemeyer.