KZN Star Raids Highveld Gr1 Cabinet – Again

World Pool Gr1 Premier's Champions Challenge


Muzi Yeni drives Royal Victory up the outside of Winchester Mansion to secure a dream double (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

Despite finding himself in a bit of trouble off a slow pace, Muzi Yeni got the Nathan Kotzen champion Royal Victory to raise the bar and produce a sustained finish to emulate Puerto Manzano and pull off the Betway Gr1 Summer Cup – World Pool Gr1 Premier’s Champions Challenge double at Turffontein on Saturday.

Royal Victor was the only raider in the 2000m Champions Day headliner and took his stakes earned to R150 000 short of R5 million, for owners Peter Victor, Brandon Wiese & Natasha Sturdy and was another feather-in-the-cap for Summerveld trainer, Nathan Kotzen.

Putting aside concerns that the Pathfork 4yo had not had more than a solitary run at home in KZN in between his Highveld raid to win the Summer Cup back in November, and Saturday’s big one, Yeni rode the gelding with confidence and had him amongst the back-markers, as Street Art and Litigation carted them along.

Into the run for home, Royal Victory looked flat-footed as Litigation, Dave The King and Winchester Mansion started firing the burners.

But despite being a margin out of his ground, Royal Victory (4-1) quickened like the good horse that he is and powered home to beat the 2023 Hollywoodbets Durban July hero Winchester Mansion (6-1) by a half length in a time of 127,68 secs.

Mike de Kock’s pair of Aragosta (40-1) and Dave The King (9-2) completed the quartet.

Bred by Ambiance Stud, Royal Victory is by Ridgemont’s Distorted Humor stallion Pathfork out of the four-time winning Kahal mare, Kailani.

A dream R90 000 buy off the National Yearling Sale, Royal Victory has now won 5 races with 7 places from 17 starts, for stakes of R4 845 250.

On a day where results eventually got into line after a shaky start, and ran to the form book, the Pick 6 paid just over R2400.

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