When Brett Crawford’s smart colt Kilindini won last Saturday’s Cape Guineas under one of the most enterprising Gr1 rides seen in a while, the Varsfontein Stud bred galloper became his sire’s 24th individual Gr1 winner.
And jockey Corne Orffer deserves a lot of the credit for a top-class tactical ride.
Orffer’s move to throw caution to the wind and make his ultimately match-winning move at the top of the summer course home straight deserves an accolade, says former champion jockey Garth Puller.
“A jockey goes into a race with a game plan and usually a plan B. He has to cut his cloth according to what he has available. When it works he deserves the credit as when it doesn’t the rider is often castigated by people with no alternative solution. In Corne’s case, he made the bold move as his mount was clearly going well and he knew those behind him were probably busy watching each other. His move forced them to make theirs earlier than they may have intended or chosen to. He threw a cat amongst the pigeons and left them flat-footed. Looking back over the years, Gr1 races can be won or lost in a moment of genius,” he added, suggesting that Orffer’s experience on the Crawford stable’s soldier Captain America had stood him in good stead and giving him the confidence of trusting the ability and heart of the big galloping horse underneath him.
Puller said that in his time, he would often walk the track before races and devise a plan that he would, for example, if in the right position, throw the opposition a curved ball by going to the outside of the track as they spun for home.
“You are a master when you get it right. Sometimes it doesn’t work out. Then they call you other names.”
On the standard of the current classic crop, Puller said that it was still early days but that based on the fact that many of them have beaten each other, it suggests that they may be off true vintage.
Kilindini is the first Cape Guineas winner for Silvano – South Africa’s Champion Sire in 2012-2013,2016-2017, 2017-2018 and 2018-2019, with Kilindini being his sire’s 92nd individual stakes winner. Silvano was also credited with his son Hawwaam’s Gr2 Premier Trophy victory.
A R2.8 million buy and signed for by World Wide Bloodstock from the 2018 Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale, Kilindini made it win number three from only six starts