Favourite Fails-Longshot Stablemate wins

Unparalleled not really suited to inside track, says trainer

tony ruffel 201

Belong To Me beats Mutamakkin with Unparalleled in third (Pic: JC Photos)

Trainer Johan Janse van Vuuren would have had mixed feelings after the running of Saturday’s R250 000 Gr3 Tony Ruffel Stakes. He had instructed jockey Gavin Lerena who was riding the original odds-on favourite Unparalleled not to give the son of Lateral ‘a hiding.’ But the yard still found the winner – in the form of the 22 to 1 Belong To Me.

The Dingaans winner Unparalleled has looked very promising but he drifted ominously from 8 to 0 into 12 to 10 before the off, as De Kock’s Mutamakkin attracted some attention from 6 to 1 into 7 to 2.

At the same time Unparalleled’s stablemate Belong To Me drifted from 12’s out to 22 to 1. And he was to prove the joker in the pack.

After a level jump, Sean Tarry’s Kapitan led Burg and Mutamakkin, with Mac De Lago and Belong To Me further back in running.

Gavin Lerena had Unparalleled settled in last and some ten lengths off the lead.

Into the straight, Anthony Delpech got Mutamakkin to go first down the inside at the 400m and he looked dangerous as he forged clear.

But in a thriller, Donavan Mansour produced a flying Belong To Me down the middle and he got to the leader and stayed on best to win by a neck in a time of 87,33 secs.

Mutamakkin was attempting to seal the feature double for Aussie breds and stayed on well for second, ahead of Unparalleled, who got going when it was all over.

Jockey Donavan Mansour said that Belong To Me was ‘only 60% ready last time.’

“When the draws were published here, I was more than happy,” he said.

Trainer Johan Janse van Vuuren said the winner had ‘tons of ability’ and praised a ‘fantastic ride.’

“Belong To Me shows so much speed and ran a cracker in the Graham Beck. Of my two horses, the inside track suits him better. I asked Gavin Lerena not to give Unparalleled a hiding. He will come on nicely from this.”

Belong To Me was bred by Highlands and is a son of Antonius Pius out of the twice winning Belong To Me mare, Along The Nile.

He was purchased by Johan Janse van Vuuren for R170 000 at the Cape R2 million Ready To Run Sale.


Gr3 Tony Ruffel Stakes  (SAf-Gr3)

Turffontein, South Africa, February 7, R250k, 1450m, turf, good, 1.27.23

1 – BELONG TO ME (SAF), 56.5, b c 3, Antonius Pius (USA) – Along The Nile (USA) by Belong To Me (USA). Owner Messrs J F & L M F Wernars & V C Veeramootoo; Breeder Highlands; trainer JJ v Vuuren; jockey D Mansour
2 – Mutamakkin (AUS), 54.5, b c 3, Redoute’s Choice (AUS) – Quiet Maggy (USA) by Quiet American (USA)
3 – Unparalleled (SAF), 58.0, b g 3, Lateral (GB) – Sublime Surge (SAF) by Elliodor (FR)
Margins: 0.30, 0.20, 0.75



Have Your Say - *Please Use Your Name & Surname

Comments Policy
The Sporting Post encourages readers to comment in the spirit of enlightening the topic being discussed, to add opinions or correct errors. All posts are accepted on the condition that the Sporting Post can at any time alter, correct or remove comments, either partially or entirely.

All posters are required to post under their actual name and surname – no anonymous posts or use of pseudonyms will be accepted. You can adjust your display name on your account page or to send corrections privately to the EditorThe Sporting Post will not publish comments submitted anonymously or under pseudonyms.

Please note that the views that are published are not necessarily those of the Sporting Post.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments



Popular Posts