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De Melo Grabs Big Double

Third Gr1 winner for Master Of My Fate

The much anticipated North-South duel in the R750 000 Jonsson Workwear Gr1 Garden Province Stakes between two champions enjoyed something of a variation on a theme at Hollywoodbets Greyville on Saturday.

The ham on the sandwich was Candice Bass-Robinson’s Oldlands Stud-bred Zarina, who seems to have plenty of scope and oodles of talent, but enjoys cropping up when she is least expected.

And while she represented the ‘South’, Zarina wasn’t everybody’s idea of a likely winner.

Keagan de Melo gets Zarina up in the middle, with third placed War Of Athena (Muzi Yeni) closes to camera (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

With the hype of a boat race between Gauteng’s SA Triple Tiara star War Of Athena and Snaith dual Gr1-winning champion Captain’s Ransom distracting punters’ attention in a tricky Pick 6, the talented filly was allowed to start at 75-1 and produced a scintillating late surge to beat Princess Calla (12-1) by a nose, with the odds-on War Of Athena gallant in defeat another nose away in third.

War Of Athena has had a long hard campaign and probably warrants a break now.

The winner, who ran out of her skin off her official 107 rating, clocked 96,13 secs for the mile as Keagan de Melo rounded off a great day after winning the Durban Gr2 Golden Horseshoe on Waterberry Lane for Dean Kannemeyer earlier.

On a day where Justin Snaith had little luck and only found his footing late, winning the last two races, Captain’s Ransom ran out of the money.

Watch the replay here:

Bred by Oldlands Stud, the winner is a third Gr1 winner for Master Of My Fate (Jet Master) and is out of the Kitalpha one-time winner, Mamalushka.

Zarina, a R200 000 Cape Yearling Sale purchase for Marsh Shirtliff, Ian Longmore and Bryn Ressell, has won 5 races with 3 places from 10 starts for stakes of R686 325.

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4 comments on “De Melo Grabs Big Double

  1. Riaan Van Reenen says:

    Congratulations to all the connections and very well done.
    That was the best fillies race I’ve seen in many years.
    You told me she was very good when she won her maiden at Durbanville and her record speaks volumes.
    Best regards from Riaan van Reenen

  2. Dev Govender says:

    Can’t argue with the result – Zarina absolutely flew at them and it takes a really top filly to produce that kind of acceleration. Well done to the winner and her connections.

    I’m a War Of Athena fan but was disappointed that Captain’s Ransom wasn’t at her best. I don’t think it was the draw that did for her – she’s a top filly and if she was at her best would have gone very close regardless of how wide her gate. I just think she had a very off day, which can happen to any horse, and I hope she is back to her best come the Cape feature season.

    As for War Of Athena herself – as disappointed as I was to see her beaten, she did her connections and supporters proud. I still think she should have been rested after the Woolavington as she’s had an impossibly busy season. Yesterday was one race too many – for her to conjure up yet another fighting effort as she did was remarkable. Ironically, I would argue that, under the circumstances, she displayed her champion qualities in defeat even more vividly than she did in any of her wins.


    Good evening SP Bloggers & Mr. Editor,

    I can’t seem to track down the photo-finish of The Garden Province anywhere, can anybody help or tell me why ?

    1. Editor says:

      Hi William
      We have received them

      Have we produced the pics large enough?

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