Gauteng-based Craig Zackey and trainer Adam Marcus, one of the youngest combinations in action on the opening day of the Cape Summer Season, hogged the limelight at Kenilworth on Saturday with a terrific feature double that set them up for plenty of exciting times in the weeks ahead.
A traditional prep platform for the Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate and the Sun Met, the R350 000 World Sports Betting Gr2 Green Point Stakes hosted a typically small field – but with a Queen’s Plate and dual July victor and a Met winner in the line-up, it oozed quality.
Returning from a six month break after his dazzling Gr3 Winter Classic victory in May, and during which time he had a knee chip removed, the Var 4yo Vardy, a versatile and relatively lightly exposed winner from 1200m to 1800m, produced a resolute finishing effort to get the better of contemporary One World to score an eyecatching victory by a length in a time of 97,46 secs.
Expecting to be in need of the run, Craig Zackey was instructed to drop Vardy out and let him enjoy the outing – with the general idea of running on into the place money hopefully, and a win being very much a bonus.
As it turned out, he came forward powerfully to challenge arch-rival One World (4-1) and with Rainbow Bridge (7-2) reluctant to take a gap between the pair and seeming to tire late, it was Vardy (7-1) who set up a LQP-Met double bid.
One World was given a top-class tactical ride by MJ Byleveld- slipping through on the rail and looking like a winner at the 250m marker.
Rainbow Bridge clearly needed the outing and after again running into trouble late, he will come on lengths with this experience under the belt.
Glen Kotzen’s Pack Leader (66-1) continues to build his confidence and came on late for fourth.
The 18-10 favourite Do It Again was expected to need it and he never quickened – a disappointing effort given the top stable’s expectations that he would earn. See the stipes report below.
Bred by the Tawny Syndicate, Vardy is out of the unraced Jet Master mare Cupid.
He is a son of Avontuur’s superstar flagbearer Var (Forest Wildcat).
A Sun Met entry Vardy races in the bright yellow and royal blue flag of Bernard Kantor, who owns him in partnership with Greg Blank, Jimmy Sarkis and Darryl Yutar.
He has now won 5 races with 3 places from 8 starts for stakes of R1 364 700.
Stipes report excerpt:
- a) An inquiry will be opened into why DO IT AGAIN (R Fourie) and UNDERCOVER AGENT (C Orffer) raced awkwardly between the 1400m and 1300m.
- b) At approximately the 300m, DO IT AGAIN (R Fourie) was momentarily inconvenienced and RAINBOW BRIDGE (G Lerena) was carried in and thereafter had to ease when awkwardly placed on the inside of VARDY (C Zackey), which was hanging in from the 450m, and proved difficult to assist. In deciding what action to take in this matter, the Board considered the behavioural history of VARDY (C Zackey). In this regard, it was of the opinion that Jockey C Zackey had taken all reasonable measures to prevent VARDY from hanging in. Accordingly, no further action was taken against Jockey Zackey. However, trainer AN Marcus appeared before the Board and was advised to take all reasonable measures to ensure that this horse does not behave similarly in future.
- d) VARDY, the winner, was selected for the taking of specimens for analysis. Trainer AN Marcus was advised. (SC)
- a) DO IT AGAIN – examined post-race. Nothing obvious detected.
- b) LA FAVOURARI – abnormal respiratory noise
- c) RAINBOW BRIDGE – recurrent abrasion behind left fore fetlock
Gr2 Green Point Stakes (SAf-Gr2)
Kenilworth, South Africa, December 14, R350k, 1600m, turf, good, 1.37.46
1 – VARDY (SAF), 58.0, b g 4, Var (USA) – Cupid (SAF) by Jet Master (SAF). Owner Messrs B Kantor, G L Blank, J Sarkis & D Yutar; Breeder Tawny Syndicate; trainer AN Marcus; jockey C Zackey
2 – One World (SAF), 59.0, b c 4, Captain Al (SAF) – Aquilonia (USA) by Giant’s Causeway (USA)
3 – Rainbow Bridge (SAF), 60.0, b g 5, Ideal World (USA) – Halfway To Heaven (SAF) by Jet Master (SAF)
Margins: 1.00, 1.00, 2.00