South Africa’s Back On A Path Of Victory!

Gold Cup winner's full-sister sends the omen...

Noble Tune’s Rathmor Stud-bred daughter Papillion’s hard-earned victory to escape the maiden ranks at Hollywoodbets Scottsville on Wednesday could have been a positive omen for her stablemate and full brother Paths Of Victory, who defends his Marshalls World Of Sport Gr3 Gold Cup Title on Saturday 31 July.

Papillion’s victory for owner Mario Ferreira, in an admittedly ordinary looking field,  was also significant as it saw pilot Warren Kennedy draw level on 86 winners with Lyle Hewitson in the chase for the KZN Champion jockey title.

Papillion (Warren Kennedy) stays on best to beat Duquesne Whistle under Marco van Rensburg (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

Speaking to the Sporting Post earlier, her Summerveld-based trainer Gareth van Zyl spoke in the aftermath of a devastating week for KZN and South Africa

“It’s been a pleasure getting to know neighbours that we’ve lived with in the same neighbourhood for many years now. To have come together, with one heart, and to join hands as such, has certainly been encouraging.”

Gareth van Zyl – hoping to end season on a high (Pic- Candiese Lenferna)

The Marshalls World Of Sport Gold Cup defending champion trainer, Gareth is just relieved to be back at racing and cracking on as normal.

With the Marshalls World Of Sport Festival Of Racing just over a week away, he explains how his horses have been preparing for the big day at Hollywoodbets Greyville on 31 July.

“Our 2020 Gold Cup winner Paths Of Victory hasn’t given me much confidence of late, until his last run. It was the first time he truly showed me that he could be bouncing back to his best for this year’s renewal, which has always been the goal.

“Getting him back to full fitness and to his best form hasn’t been a straightforward journey.  But I can now confidently say that he is showing that he is back to where we had him last year.

“That said, Paths Of Victory does need things to go his way in the race. He’s not a push-button type of horse. But if things do go his way, we can doubt expect a big run from him!”

Paths Of Victory is ready for the Marshalls World Of Sport Gold Cup (Pic- Candiese Lenferna)

Gareth’s Gr2 winner She’s A Keeper will be back at the track on Gold Cup Day and is likely to line up in the Gr2 Gold Bracelet.

“She’s taken her run in the Vodacom Durban July very well and I’m expecting a big race from her. We have S’manga Khumalo on board for the race. I have a good strike rate with the former SA Champion and I’m sure he’ll get along with the filly well!”

Watch Papillion’s win on Wednesday:

Gallic Chief, a promising youngster will likely take his place in the Gr2 Umkhomazi Stakes beside stablemate Rodriguez.

The recently gelded Hasta Manana will run in the Gr1 Premiers Champion Stakes.

  • Declarations for the big day are due by 11h00 on Thursday, 22 July.

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