A tactical plan come together for the Fabian Habib yard saw their stayer Zeus register an overdue first stakes victory when completing a hat-trick to win the R225 000 Betway Allied Steelrode Java Stakes at Turffontein on Saturday.
The 2400m contest hosted the Highveld’s top stayers and the Habib plan centred around two half-brothers – one the 7yo Out Of Your League, a former Gr1 SA Derby winner, and the other being the 5yo Zeus, a runner-up in his year.
Philasande Mxoli took Out Of Your League to the front from the jump and he was almost ten lengths clear at one stage as the 17-10 Zeus was confidently ridden from off the pace, by Gavin Lerena, who enjoyed a cracking afternoon with 3 winners, capped with a feature double.
Into the final Stages Zeus unwound and drew away to beat the 17-2 Black Thorn by 5,25 lengths in a time of 154,21 secs.
Flying Bull (7-1) was a further 1,50 lengths back in third, with the game mare Opera Glass (25-1) rounding off the quartet.
A R70 000 National 2yo Sale purchase, Zeus was bred by longstanding Wilgerbosdrift Manager Wynand Nel and is a son of the deceased National Assembly sire Soft Falling Rain out of the Windrush mare, Lil’ Bacio, who never raced.
Now a winner of 8 races with 3 places from 22 starts, Zeus took his stakes to R473 875.
Enjoy the replay: