Maiden International Gr1 Success For SA Owners

'He is a very good horse...' - Trainer

Just two months after celebrating their first Grade 1 winner on home soil, the Hollywood Syndicate enjoyed the pleasure of watching their maiden International elite winner storm home as Il Etait Temps, leased in partnership with the Kieswetter’s Barnane Stud, and also owned by Ross Doyle and PW Jones, charged to victory in the Tattersalls Ireland Gr1 Novice Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown on Sunday.

The partnership between the Kieswetter family’s Ridgemont Stud in South Africa and the Hollywood Syndicate has gone from strength to strength, with recent dual Hollywoodbets Kenilworth Gr1 winner Make It Snappy racing in the purple and yellow flag, and leased from her breeders, Ridgemont Highlands.

A delighted Danny Mullins salutes after the Gr1 success

On Sunday Il Etait Temps raised the bar for the partnership as he caused something of an upset, with stablemate and race favourite Facile Vega finishing last of all after fading quickly out of the race after turning for home.

On the flipside, Il Etait Temps accelerated under Danny Mullins to score a nine-and-a-half-length success at 14-1.

There had been drama earlier on, when one-time Derby favourite High Definition parted company with JJ Slevin.

It could be exciting things next for the grey Il Etait Temps who is a son of Jukebox Jury (Ire) out of the Dom Alco (Fre) dam Une Des Sources (Fre).

The result has also immediately shaken up the betting for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival!

Danny Mullins explains how the sensational victory unfolded

An elated Devin Heffer, who watched the Leopardstown action on television from his Durban home over 14000km away told the Sporting Post that the Hollywood team were incredibly privileged to be a part of a wonderful and exciting journey.

“To have enjoyed the success that we have over the past two months with the outstanding Make It Snappy and her two sensational Gr1 victories, and now to have enjoyed the thrill of this breathtaking Gr1 Leopardstown winner at such an early stage of our entry into the UK racing arena, is something that we could not have dreamt of just a matter of months ago. And it would not have been a reality without Wayne and Craig Kieswetter, and the Ridgemont and Barnane Stud teams. Their hard work and initiative in breeding and sourcing horses of the highest calibre, is professionalism of the highest order in what we all know is a very competitive industry. We are very fortunate to be enjoying the journey with them and look forward to many more wonderful moments,” he added.

Trainer Willie Mullins said that the winner is ‘a very good horse’ and just has to get his jumping right.

“He made a mistake at the first again but he’s a Grade 1 horse! I’ve always thought a lot of him, he got a cute ride from Danny who knew what was going to happen. He said he let the two in front have their battle and pick up the pieces afterwards. He felt they went too fast up front and the pace was wrong.”

The trainer felt the fast pace cost Facile Vega who was defeated for the first time in seven starts. Last season’s Champion Bumper winner raced prominently with High Definition before he unseated before fading in the closing stages.

Mullins added: “We’re going to have to ride him like a racehorse and not a machine next time, that’s what Paul did today so we’ll change tactics next time and hopefully we’ll be back to what he is.

The partnership’s Gust Of Wind was beaten into fifth in the Donohue Marquees Spring Juvenile Hurdle at the festival on Saturday.

Il Etait Temps proudly shows his brand new blanket off

Hollywoodbets is a leading SA-based international sportsbook operator and have raced horses in South Africa under the same silks for over 20 years.

The Kieswetters have achieved great success from their Ridgemont Stud in Robertson in South Africa and their Irish satellite operation Barnane Stud, just outside of Templemore Co, Tipperary, has dovetailed to form a burgeoning international horseracing and breeding powerhouse.

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