Africa Flies

Via Africa wins Gr1 R600 000 SA Fillies Sprint

Too Quick! Via Africa powers clear under Alec Forbes to win the SA Fillies Sprint

Too Quick! Via Africa powers clear under Alec Forbes to win the SA Fillies Sprint

Strike one for Var! Trainer Duncan Howells didn’t want to hear that his superfast 3yo Via Africa could possibly get beaten, and his confidence was endorsed in emphatic style when the flyer won the  Gr1 R600 000 SA Fillies Sprint run over 1200m in the fastest Gr1 winning time of the afternoon at Scottsville on Saturday.

Via Africa came into this race with an impressive record of six wins and three second placed defeats, two of which were behind the brilliant What A Winter. The fear that she would not cope with the extra 200m proved to be of no consideration.

Coming off her recent good second in the Gr1 Computaform Sprint at Turffontein, and facing a quality field boasting names like Princess Victoria, Welwitschia and All Is Secret,  Via Africa drifted marginally in the betting and went from 9 to 10 to 27 to 20 at the off.

From a good jump, Via Africa kicked into her high speed cruise mode to lead all the way and never faltered for a heartbeat as she kept at her task.

Via Africa registered the fastest Gr1 winning time of the afternoon when she surged clear in the final 100m to win by 2,50 lengths in a time of 67,68 secs.

Recent KRA Fillies Guineas winner Festival Of Fire stormed through late for second to hold an improved Princess Victoria, who ran a cracker after a long break. This will bring her on many lengths.

All Is Secret ran a game race to finish fourth and 3,75 lengths behind.

Trainer Duncan Howells said that he was always confident of a big run from Via Africa.

“We kept her to 1000m earlier on as she was probably too immature for the 1200m. But she has grown and developed like one can’t believe, and is a serious racehorse now. She is far superior to fillies in this country over the sprints,” he said.

Via Africa was bred by part owner Andre Hauptfleisch and as stated, she is by super sire Var out of the thrice winning Qui Danzig mare, Bump ‘N Grind.

This was the first leg of a fantastic Gr1 winning double for Var on SA’s premier sprint raceday.

Via Africa  has now won 6 races for 3 places(all seconds!)  from 9 starts. She took her career stake earnings to R1 058 000.

The future looks bright for this magnificent speed machine!

SA Fillies Sprint (SAf-G1) (5/25)

Scottsville, South Africa, May 25, R600.000, 1200m, turf, 1.07.68

 VIA AFRICA (SAF), 58.5, b f 3, Var (USA) – Bump ‘n Grind (SAF) by Qui Danzig (USA). Owner AJ Boshoff & GA Hauptfleisch; breeder GA Hauptfleisch; trainer DC Howells; jockey A Forbes (R375.000)

Festival Of Fire (SAF), 58.5, b f 3, Kahal (GB) – Fuel The Fire (SAF) by Russian Revival (USA)

Princess Victoria (SAF), 60.0, b f 4, Victory Moon (SAF) – Platinum Princess (SAF) by Rakeen (USA)

Margins: 2½, 1, nk

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