Piere Strydom: won the Tsogo Sun Sprint on Talktothestars
PICTURE: Getty Images
By Michael Clower 11:55AM 5 JUN 2016
Report: South Africa, Saturday
Scottsville: Tsogo Sun Sprint (Grade 1 H’cap) 6f, turf, 3-y-o+
TALKTOTHESTARS (Coenie de Beer/Piere Strydom), who races without shoes, defied top weight to give his trainer one of the biggest wins of his career.
Piere Strydom, who was winning the Tsogo Sun Sprint for the fourth time in the last nine seasons, had his mount handily placed throughout and went clear on the 13-2 chance over a furlong out to beat African Ruler by two and a quarter lengths.
Strydom, a six-time champion jockey, said: “I felt good going past the two-furlong marker but I was always worried that something well handicapped might come and find a bit more. But my horse just kept plugging away.”
Red Ray, backed from 7-1 to 4-1 favourite, was doing his best work at the end and kept on to take fourth.
Also on Saturday
Scottsville: Allan Robertson Championship (Grade 1) 6f, turf, 2-y-o fillies
The Secret Is Out (Vaughan Marshall/MJ Byleveld) readily justified 7-5 favouritism to beat Mike de Kock’s second string Fursa by three-quarters of a length but she encountered a bit of interference two furlongs out.
Byleveld said: “One of the guys wanted to get to the inside and closed me up. It wasn’t a nice thing to happen but she was good enough to get herself- and me – out of trouble. She is very green but she has a big action and a big heart, and I was confident all week.”
Marshall, winning this race for the fourth time, added: “She is very special and there is lots more to come. We haven’t got to the bottom of her.”
Scottsville: Tsogo Sun Gold Medallion (Grade 1) 6f, turf, 2-y-o
Always In Charge (Vaughan Marshall/Anton Marcus) led early and turned on the style in the final furlong to justify 5-2 favouritism and beat 25-1 shot Seattle Singer by three lengths.
Marcus, who has dominated this race, was winning it for the third consecutive year and for the sixth time in ten seasons. He said: “The horse’s work has been exceptional and he is way above average.”
Scottsville: City Of Pietermaritzburg Fillies Sprint (Grade 1) 6f, turf, 3-y-o+, fillies and mares
Real Princess (Dean Kannemeyer/Anthony Delpech) readily followed up her course and distance win of just over a month ago, hitting the front just under a furlong out and storming home a length and a quarter in front of a back-to-form Fly By Night.
Delpech said: “When you get after this filly she really quickens. She is all heart and I was just hoping that the gap in front of us would stay there – and it did.”
Last year’s winner Carry On Alice proved an expensive disappointment. She started at 7-10 and, although she did not have the clearest of passages, she ran way below her best and managed only fifth. A number in her stable have been suffering from an infection.