The magic repeated itself for three days but never got monotonous!
In a dream record weekend of feature successes, Glen Kotzen and Morne Winnaar rounded off a dazzling treble with a cracking victory by the Ideal World gelding Cat Daddy to win the R350 000 Listed Algoa Cup at Fairview on Sunday.
A Gr2 and two Listed features, and stake cheques totalling over R530 000, was the Kotzen-Winnaar Friday, Saturday, Sunday haul in one of the most memorable weekends for any trainer-jockey combination in recent times.
For the 38 year old Winnaar the thrill has undoubtedly been a hard won career highpoint and a classic commitment-loyalty test case.
The once naughty apprentice has matured into a class balanced rider and ‘polite and kind guy’ in the words of Glen Kotzen, and many may have forgotten that he slotted into the powerful Kannemeyer KZN string in December 2016 with great success when regular rider Anthony Delpech was injured.
But back to Sunday, the 2000m handicap was a walk in the park for the Sporting Post’s top-rated bet of the day.
Backed into 2-1, Winnaar had the gelding relaxed in midfield and pressed the launch button halfway up the straight.
Riding the confidence of a crest of a wave, Cat Daddy was kept balanced to score his peak career success beating the Snaith’s Knights Templar by 2 lengths in a time of 124,02 secs.
In the mini cherry on top of a great weekend, the Woodhill Racing stablemate Duc D’Orange ran a cracker from his wide gate to grab third 1,25 lengths back, with West Coast visitor Crome Yellow rounding off an all-Cape quartet in fourth.
The well travelled Cat Daddy – his penultimate start was in KZN and his last outing in the Cape – was recording his first stakes success and took his earnings total to R483 850 with 4 wins and 5 places from his 13 starts.
He is raced by South Africa’s most famous golfer of all time and a group of his friends and was bred by Gary Player Stud from Ideal World (Kingmambo) out of the one-time winning Black Minnaloushe mare, Eyona.
Glen confirmed that he had nothing to do with selecting Cat Daddy. “The cleverest thing I did was buy the winner’s half-brother by Pathfork for Justin Vermaak at the recent National 2yo Sale,” he said.
Disappointingly, despite the month end timing and the hype of the meeting, the projected R3 million Pick 6 target, with a R500 000 carryover, was not reached with the exotic pool banking R2 689 192.