Cape champion trainer Justin Snaith saddled four of the five runners in the R150 000 Cape Turf Club Cape A Stakes at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Wednesday and in the winning post-race interview had a jibe at his colleagues, asking ‘where is everybody else?’.
The Cape winter programme has been dramatically refurbished and upgraded to try and bolster field sizes, with all the benefits that flow from that.
A regular participant in the Champions Season action on the East Coast for the past twenty years, Snaith announced in March that he was considering only travelling a handful of his substantial and powerful string up to Summerveld for the big season this year.
The season starts on Saturday 6 May with the running of the IOS Drill Hall Stakes and the respective sex WSB Guineas.
After saddling his third winner of the Hollywoodbets Kenilworth midweek meeting following the Dynasty gelding Navy Strength leading from gun to tape with Grant van Niekerk riding his colleagues to sleep, Snaith said that people asked ‘why Snaith has most of the field?’
“Well this is sad to see. I’m asking, where is everybody else? The idea is that we support the local racing and prep our horses here, then go out and take in the big season in KZN and Gauteng. Surely?”
A decent sort on his day, Navy Strength looked beaten inside the final 200m, but Master Redoute failed to maintain his surge and Grant van Niekerk’s bravado paid dividends as the 4yo went on at 5-2 to hold Master Redoute (11-2) by 0,75 lengths in a time of 131,01 secs for the 2000m.
Tote favourite and stablemate to the winner, Silver Darling, a 2023 Hollywoodbets Gr1 Durban July entry, was a head back in third.
The 4yo daughter of Silvano leaves for KZN on Friday and has the Gr1 Woolavington, now open to all ages, as her target as she bids to defend her 2022 title in the big one on Daily News Day, 27 May.
Justin didn’t seem too impressed with Richard Fourie’s ride on Silver Darling.
“She would have been better had she raced closer to the pace. She has never run this way before. It’s too later to teach her new things now.”
Watch the replay here:
An R800 000 National Yearling Sale graduate, Navy Strength, who races fro Cape racing boss Greg Bortz and Nancy Hossack, has now won 4 races with 8 places from 19 starts for stakes of R429 563.
A son of the outstanding Dynasty (Fort Wood), he is out of the high-class Gr3 Kenilworth Fillies Nursery winner Spring Lilac (Joshua Dancer) – a half-sister to Equus Champions Bela-Bela and the ill-fated Rabiya.