The Rock’s First Gr1

Seventh Rock colt wins Tsogo Sun Gr1 Medallion

Guiness gets up to win Tsogo Sun Medallion_compressed

Anton Marcus keeps Guiness at his task as Carry On Alice challenges strongly on his outside

Tradition, achievement and broken records were the order of the day as trainer Dennis Drier’s Seventh Rock colt Guiness won the Tsogo Sun Gr1 Medallion at Scottsville on Saturday. The promising 2yo had the distinction of being his sire’s first group one winner.

It was Drier’s third straight Medallion winner after Potent Power in 2012 and Captain Of All in 2013 and it was also a momentous occasion for the high riding Ingrid and Markus Jooste who were recording a double as owners.

We may well all just be showing our age, but Jockey Anton Marcus won this race on Seventh Rock in 2007 when trained by Charles Laird for Ingrid and Markus Jooste.

A superbly fast son of Rock Of Gibraltar, Seventh Rock was a handsome specimen and was sold for Aus$1 025 000 as a yearling.

A winner of six of his nine starts, including the Gr3 Tommy Hotspur Handicap, Seventh Rock stood his first season at Klawervlei in 2010.

One of the finest sprinters of his time, Seventh Rock was labelled early in his career as a horse who has all the attributes required to make a top sire.

He has a blue blooded pedigree, being by 2002 World Champion racehorse and the winner of 7 consecutive Gr 1 races, Rock of Gibraltar.

His dam, Ruby Clipper, was one of the fastest fillies ever to race in South Africa. She won 10 races including the Gr1 Allan Robertson Fillies Futurity. She was voted Champion Sprinter, is a daughter of champion and top sire Rubiton and her dam is a Gr1 winner.

Dennis Drier

Dennis Drier celebrated a hat trick of wins in this race

Seventh  Rock was on the board early in his first crop, when his daughter Captain Rock won the opening juvenile scurry of the Gauteng Season in November last year.

Try as she might, Carry On Alice could not peg back Guiness, whose telling kick at the 300m marker proved decisive. The Tarry filly was still a quarter length in arrears at the finish as Guiness registered 69,47 secs for the 1200m to obtain his unbeaten record. Carry On Alice started a 22/10 favourite, while Guiness was easy to back at 8/1.

The disappointments of the race were Banaadeer who never showed and ran 5,50 lengths off the winner. Justin Snaith’s Harry Lime was always prominent down the outside but appeared to run green and was a further length back.

An elated Anton Marcus confirmed afterwards that he had won this race on Guiness’ sire and that he felt that the colt was very progressive

Anton Marcus

Anton Marcus rates the winner

Trainer Dennis Drier had a day of mixed fortunes but this win would have made up for any other disappointments.

“The bottom line is we can’t do this without the horses. I didn’t think he would have the pace to be up there all the way. He is way above average and I wanted this horse the moment I saw him at the Durbanville Sale.”

Guiness is now unbeaten in 2 and took his stake earnings to R423 750, which just about covers his purchase price. He was purchased on the Cape Premier Yearling Sale Book 2 for R425 000.

He was bred by Gary and Jackie Joliffe of Golden Touch Thoroughbred Services and is out of the Strike Smartly mare Tinder Box, who won once at 1200m.

This is a good family and it is worth noting that Guiness’ half- brother by Grey’s Inn, November Rain, scored his eighth win at Fairview on Friday.



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