“I rate her in the top five fillies I have trained.” Mike Azzie went on record with that bold declaration seventeen months ago.
On Saturday at Turffontein his Aussie bred flyer San Fermin showed she could be ready to deliver on her trainer’s great expectations when she exploded through late to score her first stakes success.
The veteran Mike Azzie made that statement after San Fermin won on debut in November 2017.
It would be fair to say that she has not quite delivered on her reputation. But as a late 4yo, she has won 3 of her last 4 starts and could be set to take on the better females around.
After jumping slowly in Saturday’s R250 000 Gr3 Sycamore Sprint, she looked to have it all to do as Gavin Lerena had the favourite Schippers in the clear as the improving Dancing Queen threw her name into the hat.
But switched in for a run, San Fermin made her way through the traffic and found the gaps.
The high-riding Marco van Rensburg is at the top of his game and registered another feature success as San Fermin flew up late to nab the fancied Schippers by 0,30 lengths in a time of 68,12 secs.
The 3yo Dancing Queen was in third, a further 0,80 lengths adrift.
Van Rensburg said he was stuck on the outside and had not intended to leave his bid so late. “She showed the heart and courage to take the gap that wasn’t there. She quickens well and she is talented,” he said.
Adam Azzie said that their charge was temperamental and she enjoyed the patient handling by Van Rensburg. He thanked the owners Drakenstein Stud and ‘Sean and the lead pony’.
The Drakenstein Stud owned San Fermin made it 5 wins with 3 places from 13 starts for stakes of R504 937.
Bred by Arrowfield, San Fermin is a 2016 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale A$100 000 graduate.
Her sire Charge Forward (Red Ransom) has produced 34 black type performers with Gr1 winning Response and Headway (both fillies) his standout performers.
San Fermin is out of the unraced Redoute’s Choice mare Choice Blend – whose fourth dam is the multiple Oaks winning tap root mare Denise’s Joy.
Gr3 Sycamore Sprint (SAf-Gr3)
Turffontein, South Africa, April 6, R250k, 1160m, turf, soft, 1.08.87
1 – SAN FERMIN (AUS), 57.0, b f 4, Charge Forward (AUS) – Choice Blend (AUS) by Redoute’s Choice (AUS). Owner Drakenstein Stud (Nom: Mrs G A Rupert); Breeder bred in Australia; trainer MG & AA Azzie; jockey M v Rensburg
2 – Schippers (SAF), 60.0, ch f 4, Var (USA) – Fair Rosalind (SAF) by Count Dubois (GB)
3 – Dancing Queen (SAF), 55.0, b f 3, Mambo In Seattle (USA) – Jet Princess (SAF) by Jet Master (SAF)
Margins: 0.30, 0.80, 0.30