|Champion KZN-Breds To Fly The Flag In British Gr 2|
With seven Gr 1 wins between them and numerous Group places in the best company both locally and internationally, Dancewiththedevil and The Apache will compete against each other on Saturday at York, in the Gr 2 Sky Bet York Stakes. 16 horses line up on the day for the race that is predicted to be in good to firm going at 2:55 (York time).
The Apache, who recently flew the flag high for South Africa after a very successful stint in Dubai which saw him defeat Igugu on more than one occasion, has faced Dancewiththedevil once before at Turffontein in the Gr 1 Summer Cup.
The daughter of Modus Vivendi won it and The Apache finished fourth, just two lengths off her. He finished the same position and length off Igugu in the Vodacom Durban July. Initially owned by Winston Chow and trained in South Africa by Gavin Van Zyl, The Apache is now owned in partnership by Winston Chow and Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum and trained by Mike De Kock.
Bred by Scott Bros in Nottingham Road, The Apache’s impressive Dubai campaign saw him win the Gr 2 Al Rashidiya, and place second in the Gr 1 Jebel Hatta and Dubai Duty Free, ridden in all three races by Christophe Soumillon. Sad news emerged before April of this year that his dam Apache Rose (by Dolpour) had passed away unexepectedly – carrying a foal to Mogok. His full-sister Bold Pocahontas who went through the ring with a white feather in her mane, sold for R500 000 at this years Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale.
The product of a ‘stallion swop’, Dancewiththedevil remains one of the best horses South Africa has seen, an awe-inspiring accomplishment made even more great by the fact that she was bred, owned and trained by one person – St John Gray.
After Dancewiththedevil’s South African campaign that included wins in the Gr 1 Summer Cup, Gr 1 Horse Chestnut Stakes (twice), Laurie Jaffee Empress Club Gr 1 Stakes as well as the Gr 1 Gold Challenge, she had her first start in England for trainer Roger Varian at Ascot in the Gr 2 Duke Of Cambridge Stakes, ridden by Richard Hughes and she will look to enjoy the track at York in her coming start.
Her broodmare sire Caesour has achieved significant success overseas with several progeny including Irridescence, Perfect Promise, Dane Julia and Alexandra Rose – all fillies.
Mogok is following a similar common denominator – being the sire of International Gr 1 winning Gypsy’s Warning – and now following the same path with The Apache. His other recent overseas campaigners include his Gr 1 winning son Orbison and Meteor Mike in Singapore who placed 4th in the Singapore TC Lion City Cup Gr 1.
Dancewiththedevil was voted Equus Champion Older Filly/Mare in 2011 as well as KZN Breeders Award for Horse-Of-The-Year, while The Apache won the Equus Award in 2011 for Champion Three year old colt/gelding.
Wishing the connections all the best for Saturday with their KZN-bred champions!