Sands of Time: June 1993

May 30 – June 5



Tenby, odds-on favourite for the Epsom Derby, is ordered to be dope tested after he fails in the big race, causing stewards to carry out a two-hour investigation into his spectacular flop. “He died before the straight” reports jockey Pat Eddery, “He was gone seven furlongs out and pulled up distressed”. Ironically, the Derby is won by his stable companion Commander In Chief, also owned by Prince Khalid Abdullah. The Prince and his trainer Henry Cecil admit that they “were watching the wrong horse” in the race.

The winner, said to have been too weak to race at 2, is having only his fourth career start and is the first since Morston to have been unraced as a two-year-old. He’s a half brother to Warning, and his dam Slightly Dangerous is a half sister to deceased South African sire Where to Dance. Commander In Chief is a son of Dancing Brave, the Arc winner who still by many is regarded as unlucky not to have won the Derby in 1986.

1993 Epsom Derby - COMMANDER IN CHIEF - finish

Commander in Chief

Dancing Brave was exported to stand in Japan after contracting Marie’s Disease, which caused British breeders to lose confidence in the stallion. He hasn’t been very popular in Japan either, but given the outstanding results of his 3yo crop (runners in all major European Gr1 races) that may change.

How reliable the result of this year’s Derby will be remains to be seen, as both runner-up Blue Judge and third finisher Blues Traveller are 150/1 shots in the betting. US-visitor Wolf Prince (a son of Wolf Power) finishes eighth, just ahead of Piggot’s O’Brien trained mount Fatherland. Piggot and O’Brien, two hollow cheeked grandfathers with 133 years, 15 Derby’s and countless grey hairs between them, had prepared for one last Derby fling – looking in the pre-race parade ring like two mumbling morose figures lost in their own rarified world of excellence.

1993 Computform Derby - HIDDEN FORTUNE - canter

Hidden Fortune

Hidden Fortune scores a Derby double when he wins the R100.000 Computaform Derby run over 2400m at Newmarket. The horse had earlier won the Gr1 SA Derby over the same distance. The Computaform Derby is the second leg of the Newmarket Triple Crown, of which all three legs last year were won by Fine Regent. Hidden Fortune is well on his way to repeat that feat, as he also won the first leg at this track last month.

Cape visitor Jewel of Asia scores in the EP Nursery Futurity at Fairview. The 13/10 favourite holds off Raggletag and Scudbuster by a comfortable two lengths.

Olympic Duel’s full brother Dancing Duel makes light work of the Daily News 2000, beating Eli’s Truth as he likes, in fast time. Bookmakers respond by pricing up the winner as 3/1 favourite for the Rothmans July.

1993 Gr1 English Oaks - INTREPIDITY - lead in


Michael Roberts scores a superbly timed win in the Epsom Oaks when he gets 5/1 second favourite Intrepidity to overhaul 33/1 Irish trained Royal Ballerina close to home. Intrepidity is given anything but a hard race, and Roberts must have known he would win a long way from home. His gentle handling of the unexperienced 3yo filly shows just why he’s the champion jockey.

Preakness Stakes winner Prairie Bayou, the 8/5 favourite for the 125th running of the Belmont Stakes, third leg of the US Triple Crown, breaks down in the running and has to be destroyed. The race is won by Colonial Affair, ridden by Julie Krone.


June 6 – 12

Basil Marcus

Basil Marcus

Basil Marcus becomes honorary national hero in Hong Kong when he wins the jockey championship on the island for the second year running. Basil scores 71 wins, two more than last year’s total – and that despite the flu epidemic which forced Hong Kong’s racing to a standstill for almost 2 months. Both Basil Marcus and Felix Coetzee will return to Hong Kong when the new season starts in a few months time.

Crystal de Roche gelding Crystal’s Garden scores his second feature victory when he takes the R100.000 JG Hollis Futurity over 1400m at Clairwood. He had earlier won the African Breeders Stakes.

A new governing body takes control of British racing, ending nearly 250 years of rule by the Jockey Club. The new British Horse Racing Board is set up to place all aspects of racing under one authority. The Jockey Club retains some administrative duties, including disciplinary matters, anti-doping measures and regulation of races.

The TBA announces the composition of its new Sales Advisory board, which will plan future sale strategies. Members are John Wilson (chairman), Eugene Sanan, Chris von Solms, Robin Scott, Henry Doms and Graeme Hawkins.

It is on the cards that the TBA will further reduce number for the National Sale (to 600 horses). “Overflow” sales are planned for the Cape (a month after Goodwood) and Transvaal (the former Highveld Breeders sale, six weeks after the National Sale), where the emphasis will be on horses aimed at regional buyers.

1993 Gr1 Schweppes Challenge Trophy - FLAMING ROCK - finish

Flaming Rock wins Schweppes Challenge Trophy

Shares in Flaming Rock, who takes up stud duties in September at Arc-en-Ciel stud, sell like the proverbial hotcakes after the Irish import wins his third successive Gr1 Schweppes Challenge trophy. Stayer Art de Vivre sets a good pace on rather soft going, and is a few lengths clear coming round the last bend. Flaming Rock shows his class with exceptional acceleration, running the final 400m in 23 seconds. The 8/10 favourite wins as he likes, easing up in the last meters, from Secret Rites. Long time race leader Art de Vivre hangs on for third. Arab owned Rami finishes well down the field. About Rami Natal racing editor McMillan had earlier written: “.. although the American bred Rami has run twice in this country, he has not yet been given a race figure rating. It is therefore difficult to rate Rami on handicap ..” – a statement which now surely must qualify McMillan as a future member of the Jockey Club’s sub-committee on handicapping.

In Paris, France, angry punters hold up the running of the French Oaks for more than two hours. Hundreds of people occupy the turf in front of the main stand, demanding that betting windows be opened. An earlier race on the card had gone of without betting because of a strike by tote personnel over pay and conditions. The Oaks (Prix de Diane) is won by Aga Khan owned Shemaka, who wins by a nose after the judge has studied the finish photograph for fifteen minutes.


June 13 – 19

Syd Trimmer

Syd Trimmer

The 91st Anuual general meeting of the South African Turf Club takes place and chairman Syd Trimmer reports an operating loss of R1.5 million. However, he assures the 100 members present that stringent measures are in place to avoid a similar operating loss in the current season. It appears that at last emphasis will be put on promotion and marketing of racing in the Cape – something no one has bothered about for at least a decade. The Chairman also proposes an amendment to the constitution enabling the club to amalgamate with another body. The amendment is unanimously accepted and the Chairman tasked with actively pursuing the possibility of a merger with the Cape Turf Club – provided an amalgamation proposal gets a two-thirds members majority at a special meeting when the time comes.

Patrick Shaw

Patrick Shaw

Irish bred Chief Advocate gives trainer Patrick Shaw and owner Hilda Podlas a narrow victory in the Natal Derby. The son of Irish Derby winner Law Society battles gamely to get the verdict from New Zealand bred White Tie Affair, who started favourite for the race. David Payne’s other runner, Milleverof, is third again (he also took that placing in the Cape Derby and SA 2000). Remarkably, Chief Advocate is a March-foal and therefore half a year younger than all other runners in the Derby. This is his third victory in the space five weeks – prior to which he’d not shown anything like this form. Gelding and a change of stables did wonders. Chief Advocate is from the same female line as Rothmans July winner Occult, and seems equally well endowed with stamina.


June 20 – 26

At Kenilworth, juvenile filly Marla, a daughter of Man Of Property, causes an upset when she wins the R100.000 Fillies Futurity at odds of 12/1. Just to press home the point made by chairman Trimmer, the filly is jointly owned by SA Turf Club and Cape Turf Club stewards McCarthy and Kerkman. Who says these things cannot be planned?


Have Your Say - *Please Use Your Name & Surname

Comments Policy
The Sporting Post encourages readers to comment in the spirit of enlightening the topic being discussed, to add opinions or correct errors. All posts are accepted on the condition that the Sporting Post can at any time alter, correct or remove comments, either partially or entirely.

All posters are required to post under their actual name and surname – no anonymous posts or use of pseudonyms will be accepted. You can adjust your display name on your account page or to send corrections privately to the EditorThe Sporting Post will not publish comments submitted anonymously or under pseudonyms.

Please note that the views that are published are not necessarily those of the Sporting Post.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments



Popular Posts