Dynasty’s magnificent daughter Beach Beauty is set to join some of the greats of the game when she attempts to become the fifth member of the fairer sex to win the Gr1 J&B Met in the past two decades. Not since Cookie Amos’ brilliant Renounce in 1966, has the Paddock Stakes – Met double been achieved.
The 21st century has been a wonderful phase of glory for the ladies, with Pocket Power’s full sister River Jetez winning the big one in 2010, followed by the outstanding Igugu’s brilliant victory over Bravura last year.
While only one female has stood her ground in the sixteen strong field for Saturday, the fairer sex has never been in a stronger position to record a historic double with Dennis Drier’s Beach Beauty set and ready to take on the boys in a huge shout for women’s lib, equality or girl power as we call it these days.
Bred by Trevor Armitage, Beach Beauty is out of the thrice winning Capture Him mare, Sun Coast. Trained by Dennis Drier and raced by the Shanks Syndicate, she is in the form of her life. She won the Calulo Services Premier Trophy, before going on to be one of the most impressive winners in recent memory of the Gr1 Maine Chance Farms Paddock Stakes three weeks ago. Can she emulate the great Renounce? We think so.
The female honour roll in the Met dating back the 47 years to Renounce’s remarkable win is an impressive one. Now based in Australia, former Summerveld trainer David Payne prepared the Northern Guest mare Imperious Sue to win the Met in 1998.
With the Jaffee owned Faralmond, Imperious Sue was one of only two mares in the R750 000 J&B Met. She produced the upset when beating the well fancied North By Northwest under Piere Strydom by a shorthead.
With the advantage of a light weight and the inside draw, Anthony Delpech rode a cracker to get her home. There were ecstatic scenes after the race when owners Len Salzman, Farrell Ratner and Wayne Aldridge were presented with the trophy.
Terrance Millard’s ‘galloping goldmine’ Empress Club came off a win in the 1000m Southeaster Sprint run at Durbanville in December 1992 and then went straight into the Queen’s Plate on the tweede nuwe jaar public holiday to beat Flaming Rock. She won the 1993 Met at the end of January, beating Flaming Rock yet again.
Empress Club was bred in Argentina and imported as a yearling by Laurie Jaffee to South Africa. She won 15 of 20 races, including eight group I stakes, and was a five-time South African champion. She was exported to the USA and won the 1994 Gr3 Hillsborough Handicap at Bay Meadows. Empress Club retired to Graham Beck’s Gainesway Stud, with a record of 16 wins from 26 starts.
The Renounce story is a fascinating one. In the early sixties Cape Town owner Paul Dolt came up with a pretty useful colt in Arctic Wash, who romped home first time out as a juvenile.
By the time the 1963 Yearling Sales at Milner Park came around, the colt had gone on to run second in a juvenile stakes race, third in the Cape of Good Hope Nursery and won the Festival Juvenile Handicap.
It was, therefore, quite logical for Dolt to make the successful bid for the colt’s year younger own sister, bred J C van der Walt of Gelykfontein Stud. Renounce had arrived and joined her brother in ‘Cookie’ Amos’s yard.
There were some who doubted the wisdom of the purchase for the filly had a growth near the frog of her near hind foot. Not long after arriving in Amos’s yard, the growth was removed and fortunately was not malignant. After rest and recuperation, Renounce commenced her schooling for the hurly-burly of racing. The rest is history.Her list of achievements on the track makes for impressive reading.
She won all of the 1964 J W S Langerman Handicap, the 1965 Ascot Three Thousand, the 1965 Gr1 Paddock Stakes, the 1965 Gr1 Cape Guineas, the 1966 Gr3 Milnerton State Express 555 Champion Stakes, the 1966 Gr1 Metropolitan Stakes and the 1966 Gr1 Paddock Stakes.
An enormous crowd had turned up to watch the 1966 running of the State Express 555 Metropolitan Handicap. Despite Renounce’s win in the Champion Stakes her stable companion, the not always reliable Fire Eyes, was the favourite and the chosen mount of the stable jockey Stanley Amos.
Ridden by crack Gauteng lightweight jockey Duncan Alexander, Renounce scored her biggest career win and capped a wonderful period for owner Paul Dolt, as she later won the Paddock Stakes and his two-year-old Blue Tavanier, took the Festival Juvenile Handicap. For Trainer H E Amos it was his sixth Metropolitan winner in eleven years. A week later, she set the seal on her greatness with a repeat triumph in the Cape of Good Hope Paddock Stakes for the second year running.
Despite injury, illness and on occasion misfortune, Renounce was a true champion. She retired to stud one of the best racehorses bred in South Africa. She raced as brilliantly at five years as she had done at two, three and four years. She had proved equal to beating the highest class of colts and was supreme against her own sex. A great racehorse in every respect. Renounce ran 29 races for 10 wins, 5 seconds, 3 thirds and a fourth for earnings of R76 396.
Sent back as a broodmare to the place of her birth, Renounce did not produce anything remotely as good as herself. Her first foal Redeem, a filly by Wilwyn (GB), won three races. Of her three other foals, one died as a yearling and the other two were unraced by themselves produced winners.