There’s nothing quite like a second chance to win the same Derby and Dean Kannemeyer’s smart Silvano gelding Hot Ticket took the opportunity in his stride when cruising in to win the R400 000 Gr2 Betting World Stakes run over 2500m at Clairwood on Sunday.
Gold Circle took the bold step of instituting a now well debated amendment to the local Derby effective this year, with a 100m increase in the distance and an opening to all ages at weight-for-age.
After running second to Silvano’s Jet in 2013, Hot Ticket’s connections were on a mission to set the record straight this time round and pulled off the stayer’s stated target for the KZN Champions Season in great style.
Punters also warmed to the hype and backed the fast improving chestnut in to start favourite, although there was plenty of talk for Joey Ramsden’s Disco Al.
As anticipated, Anton Marcus took the enthusiastic Disco Al up to lead from Tribal Dance and Sky Rise with Hot Ticket relaxed in fourth and some six lengths off the leader. The pace was a modest one.
Marcus continued to dictate matters as they came for home as MJ Byleveld kept Tribal Dance in attendance.
At the 400m Tribal Dance moved up looking a winner in Disco Al’s slipstream but Hot Ticket was three lengths off and full of running.
Finishing strongly, the son of Silvano stormed into the lead and drew off to win as he liked by 3,75 lengths in a time of 153,80 secs.
The former East Cape Derby winner Tribal Dance stayed on one paced for second, while Disco Al faded late into third and 5,50 lengths back.
Starting at 17 to 20, Hot Ticket was a popular winner and looks likely to contest the Gold Cup, with the possible stepping stone of the Gr2 Gold Vase on July day.
That said, Kannemeyer is notoriously conservative with his programming and may opt to go straight for the Gold Cup.
Jockey Karl Neisius rates this fellow a ‘true stayer’: “Things worked out well. They went a reasonable gallop and I managed to get into a good position from a nice draw. He picked them off up the straight and it was just reward as he was a bit unlucky last year in the Derby.”
Trainer Dean Kannemeyer said that he had always felt this race was tailor made for Hot Ticket.
“This was his main aim and we were preparing him specifically for it after Gold Circle opened it at weight-for-age. And we will always take whatever we can grab! He is a really good staying horse and he is once again living proof what a great stallion Silvano is. Thanks to all concerned. It has been a wonderful day’s racing.” he said.
Part owner David Abery was also on hand to lead the gelding in.
“I wouldn’t have missed this race for the world. What a pleasure it is to own a horse like this. Thanks to Dean and to Karl and to the whole team,” he said.
His partner in Hot Ticket, Cape based Rick Achmat added: “We were so confident, I decided to fly up on Friday already! We were keen to gain some revenge and atonement for last year’s unlucky second. Thanks to everybody involved. What a thrill,” he said.
Hot Ticket is owned by a partnership of Messrs David Abery, Rick Achmat and Ferdi Dippenaar and is a son of Silvano out of the unraced Sportsworld mare, Hot Number. He was bred by Digteby Stud and was an astute buy from the National Yearling Sale at just R180 000.
This was his fifth win with 6 places from 19 starts for stakes of R760 205.
It was a great four winner weekend for Dean Kannemeyer.
Besides this serious Gold Cup candidate, he saddled two impressive winners at Greyville on Friday evening and then another good double here.
Kannemeyer sent out Fred Crabbia’s unbeaten 2yo Trippi colt Afrikaburn, who was an impressive winner of the first race and looks set to contest the Gr1 Golden Horseshoe on July day.
He looks quite special. But as Dean would say, ‘let’s take it one race at a time’.