The prodigious talent of Richard Fourie caught his fellow jocks fast asleep at Kenilworth today. A track running fast and a deceptively powerful tailwind are not rocket science and the young man took full advantage of the conditions.
It is something of an irony that Fourie caught his colleagues napping over the same distance and in two consecutive races, with identical tactics. Bernard Fayd’herbe was the pilot of the second placed favourite in both cases to add a further dimension to the puzzle.
But let’s take nothing away from Fouries’ two wins. Kiss And Tell was all the rage in the Maiden Plate over 1200m and was backed into a red hot 1-4 to win the Pick Six opener. Fourie had other ideas though and he allowed Stephen Page’s Kabool filly Herecomesthebride to bowl along in front. Fayd’herbe pressed the panic button on the favourite at the 200m marker, but in spite of making ground, the race was over and Herecomesthebride kept rolling to win her maiden.
Peter De Beyer bred and part owns the filly, who is by a stallion that has not set the record books alight but is out of a fair dam line in the Darby Fair five-time winning, Fair Song. She may battle against stronger opposition.
Fourie then jumped on the game Jean’s Pride in the next race. Described by her shrewd trainer Mike Stewart, as a lady with ‘shocking legs and tiny feet and who just doesn’t stay.’ The Cheveley Stud-bred daughter of Western Winter kept galloping relentlessly in the MR86 Handicap over 1200m in perfect winning conditions to easily hold Kwitizina and a flying Pale Night, who arrived far too late.
Stewart was on the mark, as he usually is with slightly problematic horses, as we recall him suggesting after she had won her maiden at Durbanville at longs odds, that ‘she would win more.’ She certainly has and this was her third victory from fourteen starts in the famous Jaffee silks.
Fourie was stymied in a dazzling hat-trick bid when the genius of Karl Neisius denied him in the second race. The Maiden Juvenile Plate over 1400m saw Paddy Kruyer’s Breath Of Autumn disappoint as favourite under Bernard Fayd’herbe as Neisius rode a cracker from the worst draw on the Captain Al filly Sunset Girl. She had run a fair fifth over a too short debut, and improved nicely here.
Fourie joined Neisius wide out 250m from home as the two Snaith runners locked horns. But Neisius had it all sewn up as he got the verdict by a head.
Karl Neisius rode his second winner of the afternoon, when Enchanting Cathy showed that her debut in September in the soft was all wrong. She had emerged from the shadows five months later to score a maiden win against some fairly weak sorts and followed up in the MR75 Handicap over 1200m narrowly holding off a flying Dumani. Neisius may have relaxed ever so slightly in the drive to the line, and this may have flattered Dumani, who just failed to get up. In a frustrating afternoon, Fayd’herbe rode yet another second place.
The Highlands bred daughter of Var cost a hefty R1,9 million as a National Yearling Sale graduate and while her investors are not off the hook yet, she is really well bred and looks like she will continue to improve.
The highest rated event of the day, an MR90 Handicap for fillies and mares run over 1600m produced a grandstand finish with the smart Victory Moon galloper Moon By Night dictating affairs out front under Richard Fourie. The Stan Elley-trained filly looked a potential winner inside the final stages, but was overwhelmed by a sustained late run from the modestly bred Mateus who was chased to the line by Margaret Court.
Mateus has been a faithful servant for her connections – winning three of her 26 starts. She loves to run at the leaders off a good pace and regular rider MJ Byleveld knows her well. Moon By Night ran her usual gallant race to stay on well for third.
The MR88 Handicap run over 2000m closed off the jackpot and the Mike Bass yard was once again to the fore as they so often are in these middle of the road staying events. The Drakenstein Stud owned and bred Jallad gelding Jeppe’s Reef grabbed his third win from twenty starts when produced late by Bernard Fayd’herbe to win going away from a flying Gianduja. Fayd’herbe had not enjoyed a memorable day up that point with a host of failed favourite rides, and he was smiling broadly as he was led in by his brother, Robert.
Richard Fourie once again played the Pied Piper role when sending the Yogas Govender-trained Xerxes out to make make the early pace. The gelding was loping along until shortening his stride at the 1000m marker as Luno took over. The Kannemeyer gelding showed remarkable early toe for a horse who takes 2000m to get going normally, but his exertions told as he fell away at the 300m marker.
The final event of the day, a Maiden Plate run over 1800m, saw a turnaround in the fortunes of private trainer Darryl Hodgson, after a very quiet spell in recent months. He turned the Miesque’s Approval gelding Putney Flyer out in fighting trim to win a smart race from Dean Kannemeyer’s improving Winds Of Noordhoek, who won’t be long in winning.
Morne Winnaar rode a terrific race from a wide draw on the winner, while Dollar Bill Blues and Sparkling Wood showed again that they are unreliable.
Last Chance Saloon was a late withdrawal again – for the umpteenth time – and this five year old entire, who has had only one career outing and is obviously unsound, must surely have done his time with the patience of the Stipes. We await the report with interest.
Note: The Stipes Report confirmed our thoughts: In view of the report from the Veterinary Surgeon regarding LAST CHANCE SALOON, Trainer C Burger will be advised that he will be required to notify the Stipendiary Board when he next enters LAST CHANCE SALOON, in order that the Stipendiary Board and a nominated Veterinary Surgeon, may pass him fit to race, in terms of Rule 49.7.
Jockey Fayd’herbe’s unhappy day was also compounded by the Stipes:
MARGARET COURT (B Fayd’herbe) hanging out, shifted out, and carried MOON BY NIGHT (R Fourie) outwards in the latter stages. Jockey B Fayd’herbe, the rider of MARGARET COURT, appeared before the Board and was advised to take stronger measures to keep his mounts on a straight course in future engagements.
Jockey B Fayd’herbe, the rider of DUMANI, was charged with a contravention of Rule 58.10.2, read with Guideline C, in that he misused his crop by hitting the filly more than three times on consecutive strides in the concluding stages. Jockey B Fayd’herbe signed an admission of guilt and was fined R500.00.