Big race rider Muzi Yeni and Royal Victory stormed home to win the R5 million 2023 Betway Summer Cup, which lived up to its billing as one of South Africa’s biggest and best race days at a packed Turffontein Racecourse on Saturday.
The Highveld’s richest horse racing event, the Betway Summer Cup, witnessed a heart-pounding showdown in a thrilling Gr1 main race that had the crowd at the Big T on their feet!
It was an imperious 2.25 length victory for trainer Nathan Kotzen and owners Brandon Wiese, Natasha Sturdy and Peter Victor, with the first KZN-based runner this century to win the Betway Summer Cup, as Royal Victory embraced the ‘Summer Reign’ theme of the People’s Race to emerge as Turffontein racing royalty.
The Gr2 Jonsson Workwear Dingaans was another cracker of a race and won in brilliant fashion by Purple Pitcher with jockey Kabelo Matsunyane thundering home to nab Gimmeanotherchance on the line for a famous win in the final stride for owner Stinkie Pooe and trainer Robyn Klaasen.
A huge crowd was in attendance at the home of South African horseracing, as 4Racing and Betway staged an unforgettable day of thrilling thoroughbred racing, with the backdrop of breath-taking Joburg views and thumping entertainment headlined by a fantastic Half Time Show featuring DJ Zinhle and Lady Du.
The race day was pure excitement from start to finish, but it wasn’t just the incredible racing that stole the show on a family fun Jozi day, in which the event’s theme of ‘Summer Reign’ burst into vibrant life on a sweltering day on the Highveld.
The glitzy Red Carpet dazzled with Johannesburg’s finest socialites and the who’s who of the horseracing and sporting industries.
The likes of former national cricket captain Graeme Smith, Kaizer Chiefs Marketing and Commercial Director Jessica Motaung, former Bafana Bafana internationals Siphiwe Tshabalala, Lucky Legwathi and Hlompho Kekana, as well as sports broadcaster Motshidisi Mohono, were among those who brought glitz and glam to the Red Carpet, along with 4Racing CEO Fundi Sithebe, Purple Group CEO and 4Racing Board Chairperson, Charles Savage, and glamorous Gauteng MEC for Economic Development, Tasneem Motara.
In keeping with the theme of the Betway Summer Cup being the ‘People’s Race’ all the hard-working Grooms who lovingly nurtured the horses in the final field of the Betway Summer Cup were awarded an amazing R20 000 each by Betway, and they all left the course as winners, regardless of where their charges finished.
The renowned DJ Zinhle had everyone dancing with her beats, making the whole racecourse pulsate with energy and when Lady Du hit the stage, the crowd went wild!
The fashion on the day was absolutely incredible, with everyone interpreting the ‘Summer Reign’ theme in various ways. African Luxury Design House and partner- Excelsior Lusso showed off their amazing new collection – Lekgawa la di Kgosigadi on models strutting down the red carpet, turning heads and making jaws drop.
The Betway Summer Cup’s destination partner, Joburg Tourism Company, added to the People’s Race theme with a fantastic on-course Joburg Summer Fashion Market, showcasing 20 local SMME’s who displayed their wares to the crowds at Turffontein.
Other event sponsors were national carrier South African Airways, Jonsson Workwear, New Turf Carriers and Volkswagen’s Lindsay Saker Alberton, the motor partner for the 2023 Betway Summer Cup.
“The 2023 Betway Summer Cup was more than just a race – it was a fantastic celebration of the very best of horseracing on the Highveld – and it was a huge success! We would like to thank Betway for their continued support and partnership with 4Racing, which helped us raise the bar to another level this year.
“From the heart-stopping racing to the star-studded Red Carpet and mind-blowing music performances and hospitality, it was a day which well and truly ushered in a ‘Summer Reign’ and was thoroughly enjoyed by all punters and racegoers.
“This is our blue-ribbon event, and I am extremely proud of its massive success. A huge congratulations to all the winning connections on a day which really showed the tremendous passion for racing on the Highveld,” said Fundi Sithebe, 4Racing CEO.
“This year’s Betway Summer Cup was yet another success with stakes increasing to a record R5 million, making it one of the richest horse racing events in Africa. We are thrilled to have partnered with 4Racing for another year, and this event was a showcase of the success this partnership can bring.
“Congratulations to all the winners and most importantly to the participating grooms who walked away with R20 000 each. We look forward to strengthening the partnership with 4Racing even further and taking this fantastic race day to even greater heights next year,” said Betway South Africa’s Jonathan Blumberg.
The 2023 Betway Summer Cup was a day of sporting excellence, high-end fashion, and unparalleled entertainment.
The thrilling winning moments followed by some fantastic music and entertainment was the day’s ultimate showstopper that will linger long in the memory.
- Media release by 4Racing on 25 November 2023