MJ Byleveld produced a quite outstanding ride on One World (5-2) to land the Grade 3 Matchem Stakes and complete a treble for himself and Vaughan Marshall as the Cape season got into full swing at a festive Durbanville on Saturday.
The family fun day organised by Kenilworth Racing and Phumelela attracted a large enthusiastic crowd, with various festivities to keep them entertained.
The New Turf Carriers sponsored Potjiekos competition went to The Rainbow Nation, who pocketed a handsome first prize of R15,000.
And the winner of the popular annual jockeys race was Richard Fourie, who narrowly prevailed over Louis Mxothwa and Anthony Andrews.
A well stocked craft market was another attraction, and over R20,000 was raised for the Western Cape Equine Trust.
But the racing was the main event and in the Matchem 17-10 favourite Undercover Agent had set a fair gallop and clearly had handily placed runners Pleasedtomeetyou and Sacred Arrow beaten 300m out.
Normally a front runner, One World was languishing about four lengths off the pace at this stage, hanging in badly, and seemingly about to finish unplaced for the first time in his career.
But an undeterred Byleveld kept plugging away, and once seeing daylight he got past Undercover Agent inside the final 100m, but then had to hold off that one’s fast finishing stable mate Search Party in the final strides to score by just under half a length.
And the time was a fast one, only marginally outside his own course record of 81.98 seconds set a year ago.
“Today he didn’t have speed, was hanging and going nowhere. But he proved he’s not just a one dimensional front runner, and won a fantastic race” said Byleveld.
It was a welcome return to very best by the runner up, who was still stone last at the 400m mark.
Byleveld’s other two wins were on Racing Express value bet Fynbos (17-4) in Race 3, and improving three-year-old Cane Lime ‘N Soda (7-2) who was a fluent winner of Race 5.
Front And Centre was both Computaform and Racing Express top bet for the day, and the 9-11 favourite didn’t disappoint in the Diana Stakes (Grade 3) for the fillies.
Helen’s Ideal set the pace as expected, but Front And Centre was in the box seat from her pole position draw.
It was only well inside the final 200m that she got the better of the game front runner, and Freedom Charter briefly looked threatening wider out, but Brett Crawford’s star filly ended up winning cosily by half a length.
National trainer-jockey log-leaders Paul Peter and Warren Kennedy made a seamless transition from the bread-and-butter fare to the first Gr2 silverware of the new season when the big-hearted Ideal World filly Vistula won the Gr2 Joburg Spring (F&M) Challenge at Turffontein on Saturday.
The diminutive Vistula showed terrific heart and courage after a slow start and from her wide draw was many lengths back in a strung-out field early on.
Warren Kennedy and Vistula grab Gin Fizz (Muzi Yeni) late in the race (Pic -JC Photos)
But riding full of confidence, Warren Kennedy had Vistula relaxed against the paint and didn’t panic with the pace on.
Into the straight Vistula (31-10) made up ground and eventually grabbed promising 3yo Gin Fizz late in the race to score by a quarter length in a time of 87,14 secs.
The runner-up recorded her fourth second place from six starts and jockey Muzi Yeni suggested that she could even enjoy a bit further.
Piere Strydom brought Perfect Tigress (25-1) through for third to boost the trifecta.
The winner was bred by Riethuiskraal Stud.
She is a daughter of Ideal World (Kingmambo) out of the one-time winning Second Empire mare, Venus Rising.
She was purchased for R100 000 at the National Yearling Sale and is raced in partnership by the Hyperpaint Syndicate and breeder Advocate Altus Joubert, who made a rare appearance on course to receive the trophy.
A first black-type success, Vistula has now won 6 races with 4 places from 12 starts for stakes of R671 912.
Peter and Kennedy are operating at a 20% win strike-rate and bagged a double as Green Dragon won the fourth – Yeni again having to play second fiddle there again.
With favourite Buffalo Bill Cody blowing his chances at the start, Roy Magner’s super consistent Prince Of Kahal flashed up late on the outside to win a drama-filled 2019 renewal of the R350 000 Gr2 Joburg Spring Challenge at Turffontein on Saturday.
Apprentice Denis Schwarz has formed a solid partnership with the 5yo gelding, who recently dead-heated with Angel’s Power to win the Spring Spree Stakes. It was Schwarz’ third straight win on Prince Of Kahal and four from four.
Allowed to start at a generous 15-1, Prince Of Kahal came on late to nab the free-striding Zouaves (5-1) and win the 1450m feature on the inside track by a head in a time of 88,88 secs.
Denis Schwarz gets Prince Of Kahal up late in the race (Pic – JC Photos)
Long-time pacemaker Chijmes (50-1) ran third with Infamous Fox (11-1) in fourth.
An objection was lodged by the Stipes on behalf of the Candice Dawson-trained Infamous Fox against the second-placed Zouaves on the grounds of interference.
The objection was upheld with Chijmes promoted to second, Infamous Fox moved to third, with Zouaves dropped to fourth.
The lack of communication regarding the basis of the objection was brought to the attention of the Sporting Post. While we appreciate the fact that schedules are tight, an explanation should at least be promptly communicated on the Tellytrack screen and even tweeted for the sake of punter information.
Trainer Roy Magner was over the moon and told Tabnews that the winner is known as Tiger in his yard.
“We love him but he’s very arrogant. He doesn’t like being told what to do. But then again, he is always doing his best anyway. It’s his way or no way!”
A son of Kahal (Machiavellian) out of the five-time winning Model Man mare Vogue, Prince Of Kahal was bred by Clifton Stud and was bought for R120 000 at the KZN Yearling Sale. He was orphaned at 2 weeks old, and is a half-brother to Gr3 winner Whatalady and Gr2 winner, Fort Vogue.
He has earned R1 073 788 with his 8 wins and 9 places from 27 starts.
-tabonline.co.za / sportingpost.co.za