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Sands Cracks It!

Another scintillating ride by Richard Fourie

A shrewd tactical move by Anton Marcus on the 3yo Soqrat almost proved the undoing of Sun Met winner Rainbow Bridge – but Richard Fourie was having none of it as he steered the temperamental gelding to a deserved end of season fairytale success in the R1 million Gr1 WSB Champions Cup.

Billed as the potential race of the season, the much anticipated showdown between Rainbow Bridge and the unexposed De Kock runner Buffalo Bill Cody failed to materialise – but it was the latter’s classy proven younger stablemate Soqrat, who almost proved the joker in the pack for the boat race merchants.

Richard Fourie deals with an awkward ride on Rainbow Bridge (Pic – Candiese Marnewick)

The subject of jockey musical chairs over time, the Eric Sands-trained Rainbow Bridge has been a newsmaker since reeling off his first three victories under Richard Fourie, who labelled him a champion early on.

And back aboard for the first time since May 2018, Fourie showed his deft skills as he was required to call on all of his experience to avert what would have been an unhappy ending to the term.

With Nooresh Juglall dictating matters up front on Twist Of Fate, Anton Marcus grabbed what looked to be a match winning initiative as they turned for home by taking Soqrat round his field to expedite matters and go for glory.

Fourie had seen the danger but as he got Rainbow Bridge to challenge, the Sands runner hung in badly and looked for Soqrat , who had moved to the inside.

While the two came close together, Rainbow Bridge always appeared to be going the stronger and Fourie’s steering kept him clean – despite an apparent slipped saddle to complicate matters.

At the line he had 0,40 lengths to spare over Soqrat and registered a time of 111,20 secs.

Eric Sands – an emotional win

It was Fourie’s second Gr1 of the afternoon and his fifth of a memorable Champions Season.

Cirillo stayed on best of the rest a further 1,75 lengths back in third.

Buffalo Bill Cody never quickened and ran out of the money.

A R300 000 National Yearling Sale graduate, Rainbow Bridge was bred by Wilgerbosdrift and Mauritzfontein.

He has won 7 races with 5 places from 12 starts for stakes of R5 257 500.

The 4yo gelding – purchased after the Met by Mike Rattray – is by Ideal World (Kingmambo) out of the versatile seven-time winner Halfway To Heaven (Jet Master).

There is a very sentimental connection to this family for Eric Sands, who trained the dam for Gavin Walker. That until she was sold to Mauritzfontein, in whose silks she raced for Mike de Kock until the end of her career.

Sands thanked Peter Muscutt for his assistance with Rainbow Bridge during the season.


Gr1 Champions Cup (SAf-Gr1)

Greyville, South Africa, July 27, R1 million, 1800m, turf, good, 1.51.02

1 – RAINBOW BRIDGE (SAF), 60.0, b g 4, Ideal World (USA) – Halfway To Heaven (SAF) by Jet Master (SAF). Owner Mr & Mrs M L P Rattray; Breeder Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfontein; trainer AE Sands; jockey R Fourie
2 – Soqrat (AUS), 58.5, b c 3, Epaulette (AUS) – Elzeeza (AUS) by Hussonet (USA)
3 – Cirillo (SAF), 58.5, b c 3, Pomodoro (SAF) – Miss Wordsworth (SAF) by Lake Coniston (IRE)
Margins: 0.40, 1.75, 0.15

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8 comments on “Sands Cracks It!

  1. Anthony Banks says:

    fantastic ride not sure how many jockeys could of ridden him any better .4/4 great combination

  2. David says:

    Well done to Eric Sands – a well deserved victory. Top job from Richard in straightening him up twice and getting him home.

  3. Michael Jacobs says:

    I am so glad that Rainbow Bridge has won this race, so many jockeys have jumped ship on this horse, yet he has performed so very well every time. Fourie originally jumped ship to ride for his stable after winning 3 great races on him. Fayd herbe jumped ship to go and ride in Dubai, Marinaresco ran unplaced and Rainbow won the Met. Marcus jumped ship to ride Hawaam, that got scratched and Rainbow ran second in the July. Lerena jumped ship to ride Buffalo Bill which had nothing of the class of Rainbow, and then Rainbow won the Champions Cup! There is no loyalty in sport, but justice will prevail. Well done Mr Sands. Get Frankie Detorri to ride him in the Cape summer!

  4. Frankie says:

    Frankie Zackey…Michael Jacob just a matter of interest with no offence are your in the comedy industry ? you’re really funny… Anyway jokes aside….I personally think Gold Circle has really spoilt us with fantastic racing over the last 3 months very very very well done guys…all 3 trainers and all 3 top guns got their share of the cake…it would have been the cherry on the top had the Champ Hawwaam competed in the July…what creamed the cake for me was has to be the Joe Soma trained *Got The Greenlight* Wow Wow Wow how impressive was that performance what a cracker to end the Champion Seasons Calender off…unbelievable training feat Mr Joe Soma….Congrats to all the winners during the KZN 2019 Champion Season

  5. david mollett says:

    Looking at a sweating Rainbow Bridge at the start and you think this fella isn’t a “full box of chocolates” which makes Eric Sands training feat that much more commendable.
    In the post-race interview, praise was understandably heaped on Mike Rattray as he and his wife, Norma, have been stalwarts in racing for so many years.
    However, it was disappointing that no mention was made of Rainbow Bridge’s first owner, the late Chris Gerber, who bought the horse for R300000 as a yearling.
    Few dispute that we are in dire times in racing and this is where we miss Chris. With his passion and energy, he would have done everything possible to get the industry back on an even keel.

  6. Michael Jacobs says:

    Thanks Zackey for the compliment, I am considered a joker in some circles! Anyway, jokes aside….. are the top jocks in SA untouchable? You people are quick to criticise Yeni, Khumalo even Simons or Grant Van Niekerk, but are other jockeys above criticism? Interesting.

  7. Michael Jacobs says:

    Mike De Kock is quick to criticise Yeni or Simon’s for poor rides, but some diabolical rides by Lerena or Marcus goes unmentioned. As I said, interesting.

  8. alan says:

    Not a great ride the horse was just a division better than the rest. the horse never hung once with Marcus or Lerena. Everything hangs with jockey fourie.Even in the JULY Do it again hung. good for Mr sands great training feat. He is a top trainer.

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