Vaughan Marshall’s smashing Vercingetorix colt Seeking The Stars confirmed his status as one of the Cape’s most progressive 3yo’s when he toyed with his hapless opposition to celebrate his biggest payday at Kenilworth on Saturday, storming clear to win the R1,25 million De Grendel CTS Ready To Run Stakes in good style.
The 1400m non black-type contest was restricted to eligible graduates of the 2018 CTS Ready To Run Sales, and at level weights – the girls get 2,5kgs off – the race looked a benefit, on paper anyway, for the Marshall Gr3 Cape Classic winner.
And after a disrupted start – Bowie and Northern Song were sprung from the outside bank of stalls while the field were still loading – Louis Mxothwa and Seeking The Stars (9-10) never looked back as they strode clear in the home straight to beat the only horse really staying on in the Flower Alley filly Lemon Delight (12-1) by 5,50 lengths in a time 84,54 secs.
Sean Tarry’s grey Willow Express (10-1) was there for a long way but faded to 6,25 lengths in third, with Blingking (30-1) a further 1,50 lengths back in fourth.
The winner’s stablemate Spiritual Wind (22-1) was the last of the finishers to bank a cheque – the son of Zoffany received R24 000 for his eighth place.
Seeking The Stars, who races in the Ricky Sewgoolam orange and dark blue flag, was bred by Klawervlei Stud and is by Vercingetorix (Silvano) out of the three-time winning Count Dubois mare Schism, who won up to 2200m.
He cost R1 million on the 2019 Cape Yearling Sale and has now earned R747 000 with his third win and two places from six starts.
While this was a restricted race, he looks bound to go on and take his place in the Cape Guineas next month.
It could be a big week for winning jockey Louis Mxothwa. He rides Atyaab for Zietsman Oosthuizen and the Viljoens in the WSB Gr1 Gauteng Summer Cup at Turffontein next Saturday.
The CTS Ready To Run & Mixed Sale, renowned for its high-profile winners and a return on investment, will be staged online in partnership with Gavelhouse.com on Sunday, 29 November.