Frances Ethel’s Passing ‘Greatly Exaggerated’!

Team Valor International star is alive and kicking

“The Reports of my Death are greatly exaggerated” said author Mark Twain in 1897, after having read his own obituary in the newspaper.

He isn’t the only one to have endured this sorry experience, as Wikipedia’s List of premature obituaries of celebrities makes clear, especially in the modern day when social media statements become instant facts, and are retweeted or (re-x’d!) at lighting speed.

Frances Ethel (Kabelo Matsunyane) wins the 110th renewal of the South African Oaks at Turffontein in April (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

I’m glad to announce that the star 3 year old filly Frances Ethel is in good company after reports of her premature death abounded on social media forums over the weekend and are also greatly exaggerated, writes Robin Bruss, representative of  Barry Irwin’s Team Valor International in South Africa.

Frances Ethel suffered a case of colic late last week and it was soon apparent that the likely consequence was going to be a missed preparation, and therefore missing her planned engagement in the Hollywoodbets Durban July.

It seems one of the owners on Saturday at Turffontein said that her chances of getting into the Hollywoodbets Durban July were DEAD.

Very quickly that became a case of the bush telegraph story: “Have you heard that FRANCES ETHEL is DEAD ! It must be true because the owner said so”!

Social media lit up Saturday night and on Sunday, the Sporting Post, amongst  others, published the news.

Betting on her was suspended, as indeed it should be, for she was not in the the final acceptances for the big race on Monday morning.

But happily, Frances Ethel is still alive and kicking, and will be booked on the second flight departing South African shores, bound for Europe and then to travel to America to race in the new partnership of Team Valor International, Anant & Venashree Singh, and Mr Perry Sambor of Sydney Australia.

It won’t be the first time a ‘dead’ horse has sprung to life, and one day, will make for a colourful story when Frances Ethel makes good on the world’s stage.

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