With the top-class Santa Therese failing to put her best foot forward, it was left to another Flower Alley mare to step up to the podium in the R200 000 Listed Betway Insurebet Jockey Club Stakes at Fairview on Friday.
Alan Greeff’s Santa Therese was going for what would have been a record-breaking third straight victory in the feature, but after being given every chance by Richard Fourie, she failed to produce her customary kick off a sedentary pace and it was fellow 6yo Flower Of Saigon (7-1) who shot clear late in the 2000m contest to deservedly register her first stakes success.
Saddled by Paarl-based Glen Kotzen, Flower Of Saigon was ridden by Smanga Khumalo and given a confident ride from three lengths off the pace.
Often placed in the Cape in decent mixed sex staying company, Flower Of Saigon clocked 125,46 secs and beat the 25-1 First Street by 4,50 lengths.
Power combination Richard Fourie and Alan Greeff will be looking for a feature victory at Fairview on Friday when the Flower Alley 6yo will be bidding for a record-breaking third consecutive victory in the R200 000 Listed Betway Insurebet Jockey Club Stakes.
The lesser fancied of the Snaith duo, Double Check (14-1) was a further quarter length back in third, with Santa Therese (33-10) running into fourth a neck away, but out of the Place Accumulator.
The winner is raced by staunch Cape racing supporters Gisela Burg and Martin Wickens, who were associated with some top sorts with Joey Ramsden in bygone years. Here we remember the likes of Catalina, Golden Corn and Major Bluff, to remember a few.
Enjoy the replay:
Bred by the owners’ Wickensburg Stud, the winner is a daughter of Travers Stakes winner Flower Alley, sire of, among others, South Africa’s reigning Horse Of The Year Princess Calla, and who enjoyed a double at the Vaal on Thursday. Flower Alley, whose runners have earned more than $46 000 000 in prize money, is currently sixth on the South African General Sires List.
The winner is out of the Captain Al four-time winner Miss Saigon, who was also raced by the same owners.
Flower Of Saigon has now won 4 races with 19 places from 32 starts and stakes of R493 625.
Fourth-placed Santa Therese has been retired to stud.
The next Fairview racemeeting is on 8 September 2023.