Superstar Frankel took his global stakes footprint reach to seven countries when he produced his first South African stakes winner, courtesy of his Avontuur-bred chestnut daughter Miss Frankel, who stormed to victory in the Listed KwaZulu-Natal Stakes at Scottsville on Sunday.
With her superstar Mom Val De Ra having won this race previously, and knowing the long patient road walked by all those connected to what is a potential breedchanging future mare for the South African horseracing industry, the Scottsville parade ring was charged with emotion as Keagan de Melo returned to the winner’s box .
The gallant 4yo had stayed on resolutely to secure a neck verdict in an official 55,2 secs – a time that our in-house handicapper has found to be incorrect and which appears to be closer to a still respectable 56,49 secs.
An emotional trainer Dennis Drier, once described as the ‘most patient trainer around’ by Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh, heaped praise on the beautiful chestnut
“She is talented and has guts and courage and has encountered numerous problems. And I didn’t think she would win today. But, hey, she proved me wrong. Well done to Pippa (Mickleburgh) and the boys (Taberers) and to my team. And it was a good ride by Keagan (De Melo),” said the veteran.
Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh spent a weekend in the air – travelling to Johannesburg for Derby Day and then to the KZN capital city on Sunday. Whatever her airline of choice, she ended up on cloud nine thanks to the beautifully bred chestnut,
“The dream goes back a long way. No stallion in SA was good enough for Val De Ra so a gamble was taken to send her to Frankel. He was unproven then and the exercise cost a fortune. Well done to everybody on the farm back home and to Dennis Drier and his team. A job well done! She is a breed changing filly – she ticks all the boxes,” said an elated Pippa.
Bred and raced by Avontuur, Miss Frankel is a daughter of Var’s Equus champion Val De Ra, who won 11 of her 13 starts, including four Gr1’s.
Val De Ra has a Dynasty half-brother called Broadway on the National Yearling Sale – see lot 146.
The lightly raced Miss Frankel has won 3 races with 1 place from 7 starts and took her stakes – an academic tally in essence – to R224 250.
The Juddmonte Farms bred Frankel (Galileo) was the world’s highest-ever rated racehorse and was unbeaten in 14 starts and went to stud a ten-time Gr1 winner
With winners in at least 12 different countries, Frankel is the sire of 60 Stakes performers which includes 27 Group winners and 9 Listed winners. He is currently hovering around the impressive ratio of 27% black-type performers/runners.