Soma Star Gives Met A Miss

Top trainer maps out his season plans

Joey Soma’s multiple Equus Award winning star colt Got The Greenlight is a notable absentee from the first entry sheet for the 2021 Gr1 Cape Town Met.

The Cape flagship will be run at Kenilworth on 30 January and the Gauteng-based hero will definitely not be travelling South.

Poetry in motion – Got The Greenlight out front where he likes to be (Pic – JC Photos)

In a chat with the Sporting Post on Thursday, Joey Soma confirmed that the chief target this season for his 4yo would be the Vodacom Durban July.

“He is a very valuable and talented horse and we have had lengthy discussions about the options at our disposal. We have decided to give the Cape a miss. He didn’t enjoy it down there last year and ran his only unplaced race in thirteen starts at Kenilworth. I am waiting for the programme, but we will more than likely start him in mid February 2021 and go the Hawaii Stakes, Horse Chestnut, President’s Champions Challenge route into the July.”

Joey said that the recent uncertainty over the movement of horses had been a contributory factor, but that any travel plans always had to be balanced against the potential risks and reward.

The decision not to run Got The Greenlight in last Saturday’s WSB Gauteng Summer Cup had also been vindicated.

“I believe a good prep is a necessity for the Summer Cup and I would not have been comfortable about rushing our colt. Summer Pudding was an impressive winner and showed what a top flight filly she is. A great training feat by Paul Peter and the Mauritzfontein team can be proud of her achievements. It takes a helluva good horse to win nine in a row.”

He pointed out that setting Got The Greenlight back by running him in the Summer Cup would have been short-sighted.

“Look at some of them behind Summer Pudding. It was a punishing race and it can be difficult coming back from that knock,” he reflected.

The Got The Greenlight team at Equus 2019 (Pic – JC Photos)

Got The Greenlight was a second Gr1 Daily News 2000 winner in the last three years for his leading sire, Gimmethegreenlight. His now Australia based son Surcharge (Yulong Prince), a recent Gr1 winner Down Under, became his sire’s first Daily News winner when he triumphed in the 2018 renewal.

With near 60 stakes horses, Varsfontein Stud’s boom sire also dominated proceedings at the recently concluded Emperors Palace National 2YO Sale.

The Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate winning son of More Than Ready was responsible for the sales topper, and two of the three lots to make R1 000 000 plus. He also ended the two day sale as the Leading Sire by Aggregate.

A multiple Equus Champion over the past two seasons, and a serious contender for SA Horse Of The Year honours last term, Got The Greenlight’s outstanding race record and all Aussie pedigree – he is out of the Commands mare Command Chi – makes the treble Gr1 winner an exciting stallion prospect.

“We are fortunate to race a horse of this calibre. They don’t come by every year. That’s why we will rather avoid unnecessary risks and impatience. He has matured and become a real man in the past few months,” concluded Joey.

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