Yvette Bremner’s smart 4yo Blaze Of Fire led for most of the trip to win the non black-type R90,000 Founders Trophy run over 1600m at Arlington last Friday. The winner overcame a rigorous campaign earlier this year, that included two Derby attempts in a short space of time, to bounce right back to his best.
There are many experts and advisors in this game and very often the armchair brigade know better than the trainer. And there was justifiable puzzlement when Blaze Of Fire’s connections took their chances with a tilt at the Gr1 SA Derby on Champions Day at Turffontein, and then just 15 days later went straight into the East Cape Derby. Two weeks-two Derbys. That’s quite heavy going.
He earned in neither and went into that rather arduous assault a winner of four of his fifteen starts from 1000m to 1400m.Three weeks prior to the Gauteng raid, he had gone off a 22-10 favourite for the East Cape Guineas, but could only run fourth 2,10 lengths behind Lord Badger.
But that experiment was all forgotten and one pipe opening sprint after his fifteen week break was all the colt needed to slam his twelve rivals in Friday’s competitive feature.
Alan Greef’s smart Badger’s Drift gelding Lord Badger went off favourite under MJ Byleveld, but paid the price of a combination of a below par effort and the fact that he was conceding 6kgs to his very smart contemporary.
Young apprentice Teaque Gould claimed his 2,5kg allowance and took his mount to the front early on to lead from Day Of The Piper, King Of Flags and Celtic Fire.
Gould gave his mount a breather around the turn and kept him balanced turning for home and he kept galloping as the cavalry charge presented many dangers, with King Of Flags running on powerfully down the inside rail.
The young rider didn’t flinch or panic though and he kept riding as Blaze Of Fire kicked on well to hold a hard riding Agrella. The winner won in a time of 97,27 secs.
Gould, who has a wonderfully balanced seat and composure that belies his years, doubled his season tally by winning this event and the last race on the Friday afternoon card.
He proved experienced senior jockey Wayne Agrella’s nemesis on both his winning rides, and Agrella’s body language in the pull-up to the last race, after he was nabbed late on Million Miles by Odyssey Of Light, told the whole story.
Mitch Wiese’s King Of Flags had every chance and will win his races. He was 0,25 lengths adrift at the line.
The promising 4yo Parceval ran on smartly to grab third place, while the class horse of the race Celtic Fire stayed on well for fourth to show a glimmer of his old form.
The disappointments included the 19-10 favourite Lord Badger, who looked dangerous out wide late, but then plodded to finish fifth and 2,25 lengths off the winner.
Emerald Cup candidate Bob ‘N Weave never looked dangerous and finished 3,05 lengths behind, while Makzoos ran a rare bad race and dropped away to 5,90 lengths behind the action.
The winner was bred by Maine Chance Farms by Victory Moon out of the once winning Secret Prospector mare Buccellati.
A R70 000 Ready-To –Run graduate, Blaze Of Fire has won five times and been placed on a further five occasions from his 19 career starts.
He took his earnings to R517 875 with this win.
While Yvette Bremner celebrated a double on the afternoon, including the feature winner, the dominant force was once again the powerful yard of Gavin Smith who sent out five of the eight winners.
Three of the Smith winners were ridden by Cape jockey Aldo Domeyer, who has made a great start to the new season with ten winners up to and including the Kenilworth meeting of last Saturday.
Var was the leading stallion on the afternoon with two winners, including the Avontuur-bred debutante Vivalda. On the breeder front, Highlands and Maine Chance Farms produced two winners apiece.
The East Cape Racing Awards will be held this Saturday 15 September at the Jock Andrews Pavillion at Arlington Racecourse.