Guv Loses Pinky To Kom

Woodruff loses smart Australian-bred filly

Arcetri Pink seen winning the Ipi Tombe Challenge

Arcetri Pink seen winning the Ipi Tombe Challenge

One could sense the victory of Arcetri Pink in the eight race at Turffontein on Saturday was a bittersweet moment for the Geoff Woodruff stable. It was sweet that she won but the fact that she could have run her last race for the stable was clearly a bitter pill to swallow.

An almost tearful Gavin Lerena, who steered the filly to her sixth career victory, hinted that the Australian-bred would be moving. “This race was supposed to be a warm-up for the Empress Club Stakes in a couple of weeks’ time. We’re going to miss our little ‘Pinky’. She’s such a sweet thing and she was loved by everybody,” said Lerena.

Tim Woodruff later gave more details when he said Arcetri Pink was going to join Kom Naidoo’s stable in Durban. “I hope we can keep her for a couple more weeks. I think she deserves a chance to run in the Empress Club Stakes as it is a Grade 1 race. However, it is obviously up to the owner.”

Gavin Lerena

Gavin Lerena – good relationship with Pinky

Last year Arcetri Pink won the Grade 2 Wilgerbosdrift Gauteng Fillies in the mud and the connections were praying for some rain prior to Saturday’s run. “I didn’t have a ride in the race before and I was in the jockey room doing a rain dance,” admitted Lerena.

Whatever he did in the jockey room, it worked. As they started coming for home in Race 7 the heavens opened, softening the track drastically.  Arcetri Pink, who went off as the 11-10 favourite, was allowed to sit off the pace by Lerena as Dashing Scarlet, the 2-1 second favourite, went off to the front.

Once in the straight Lerena let out some rein and Arcetri Pink swept into the lead to beat Walking on Air by 2.50 lengths, with Gold Cup Girl another four lengths back in third.

She was Lerena’s third winner and was a great way for him to build up some cash to buy a decent birthday present for his wife, Vicki.

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