A Promise Delivered
Joburg and its spectacular autumn weather didn’t disappoint on Saturday when families descended on Turffontein Racecourse to enjoy a perfect April afternoon.
For those just starting to experience the exciting world of horseracing, the Triple Crown and Tiara consist of 3 races, in quick succession for 3 year old horses only. It is considered to be one of the greatest achievements in Thoroughbred horseracing and one of the hardest to achieve.
What we refer to as the “first leg”- the Guineas- was run on Saturday, 3rd March over 1600m. This past Saturday, saw the horses take their places over 1800m in the S A Classic and the 3rd and final leg will be held over 2450m in the S A Derby (colts) and the S A Oaks (fillies) on the 5th May.
The Triple Crown and Tiara series symbolise a true athlete- combining speed, stamina, courage and determination.
Only champion’s can do this and it is for this reason that in South Africa, the Triple Crown has only been won 3 times by Horse Chestnut, Louis The King and Abashiri and the Triple Tiara only twice by Igugu and Cherry On The Top.
The Mike de Kock trained filly “TakingThePeace” ran on strongly in the finishing stages of the Wilgerbosdrift SA Fillies Classic to pip “Green Top” on the line- robbing jockey Muzi Yeni of winning a double in the Classic’s on the day. Muzi had just won the Grade 1 S A Classic in a picture perfect ride on what was erroneously believed to be the unlikely contender of Lobo’s Legend, trained by the charismatic Joe Soma, not a stranger to preparing Grade 1 winning athletes.
This little filly with a big heart is a serious contender for the Triple Tiara award and will certainly be taking her place on Saturday, 5th May in the S A Oaks.
It was also a thrill to see South African Champion and Horse of the Year- “Legal Eagle” return to his home course and stamp his authority once again in the Grade 1 HF Oppenheimer Horse Chestnut Stakes over 1600m. A better horse over the mile you will battle to find and it was heart warming to hear the crowd cheer him home across the winning line.
With gates opening at 11am, it wasn’t long until the decks and the entire course was a hive of activity. Parents looking for a bit of downtime (overwhelmed from entertaining the kiddies still on school holiday) were able to have them safely run amok and be entertained for the afternoon in the Kids Zone.
Besides the obvious attraction of the 12 races carded on the day, the racing itself delivered superbly and kept the crowds fully entertained with the Weekend Marke,t which brings its own accredited and well known food stalls to the party. The focus this year being the prawn festival, meant that a vast variety of prawn dishes and other tasty meals were available to enjoy, and the classic car collection on display was a resounding success and attracted plenty of interest. It was wonderful to have these old classics on the course reminding us of the quality and perfection in the builds of yesteryear.
Where else would an A list celeb choose to celebrate but in the Racing. It’s a Rush Lounge! Matli Mohapeloa birthday celebration, was a jam-packed event combined with a spectacular day of racing. The new and stylishly revamped venue, serving only the finest cuisine and refreshments is definitely going to be the venue of choice on any social calendar.
The lounge will once again be open on Saturday 21st April- the HSH Princess Charlene Day- bookings can be made at www.webtickets.co.za