Tarry Steps Into Spring

Saturday feature double for Trippi

Trip To Heaven

Trip To Heaven (S’manga Khumalo) is an easy winner (Pic: JC Photos)

SA champion trainer Sean Tarry saddled his first feature winner of the new term when the sparingly raced Trippi 4yo Trip To Heaven spreadeagled a class field at weight-for-age to win the R400 000 Gr2 Joburg Spring Challenge at Turffontein on Saturday.

This was very impressive! Despite a pre-race scare as was has attended to by the farrier at the start, the 4 to 1 shot Trip To Heaven came out galloping and full of fire – and was never headed as he ran right away from his field.

Trip To Heaven was having only his eighth career outing in a field of seasoned campaigners and Tarry was quick to urge the handicapper to look at the performance in context – and against the background of some of his charge’s opponents possibly needing the outing.

S'manga Khumalo

S’manga Khumalo – cool ride from the front

There is little doubt that Drill Hall Stakes winner and 16 to 10 favourite, Ice Machine, despite being given every chance by Andrew Fortune, ran below his best, when plodding late in the race to hang on for fourth.

Fortune started the day with a bang by riding the first three winners on the card.

S’manga Khumalo had Trip To Heaven relaxed in front as he led Bouclette Top and Forest Fox from the 1450m start.

Into the home run, Trip To Heaven continued to gallop powerfully and with Fortune moving Ice Machine into the centre, a thrilling climax looked a genuine possibility.

But at the 300m, Trip To Heaven had given them the slip and only Bouclette Top was staying on, as Ice Machine went one-paced and was passed by Whiteline Fever.

In the run to the line, Khumalo had the opportunity to give his customary salute and the pair had 2,50 lengths to spare, in a time of 86,62 secs.

Bouclette Top ran a great race to stay on nicely for second, while Whiteline Fever would have pleased his supporters as he got his head down to wipe Ice Machine out of the Place Accumulator play.

Trainer Sean Tarry said that he was still playing with the options of going to the Cape or staying at home with Trip To Heaven.

Sean Tarry - back in the play

Sean Tarry – back in the play

“He is not an automatic Charity Mile type of horse. A handicap mile may not be the ideal kind of race for him,” he said.

He added that he wasn’t even sure his charge was a 109.

S’manga Khumalo confirmed what we all saw – that Trip To Heaven had relished it out front and had simply done things his way.

This was Trip To Heaven’s second Gr2 victory and he took his win tally to 4 from 8 starts, with 3 places. He has earned R721 375 in stakes – just over half of his purchase price.

Trip To Heaven is a Cape Premier Yearling Sale Book 1 graduate and was purchased by Chris Van Niekerk and Markus Jooste for R1,4 million.

Bred by Highands, he is by Drakenstein stallion Trippi out of the Cee’s Tizzy four-time winner Helleborous Blue.


Gr2 Spring Challenge (SAf-Gr2)

Turffontein, South Africa, October 3, R400k, 1450m, turf, good, 1.26.62

1 – TRIP TO HEAVEN (SAF), 59.5, b c 4, Trippi (USA) – Helleborus Blue  by Cee’s Tizzy (USA). Owner Messrs C J H van Niekerk & M J Jooste; Breeder Highlands; trainer SG Tarry; jockey S Khumalo
2 – Bouclette Top (ARG), 59.0, br g 5, Giant’s Causeway (USA) – Bouclette Glory (ARG) by Honour And Glory (USA)
3 – Whiteline Fever (SAF), 59.0, b g 7, Right Approach (GB) – Hockey Corner (SAF) by Sportsworld (USA)
Margins: 2.50, 2.50, 0.25


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