Five-Time South African Champion Stallion Jet Master Dies

Five-Time South African Champion Stallion Jet Master Dies

Champion Stallion Jet Master

The powerful KZN-bred son of Rakeen has died after he was operated on over the weekend in an attempt to help him regain his co-ordination, a side effect of contracting West Nile Virus in August which prevented him from covering mares this season.

Jet Master had the best veterinary team available and every precaution was taken, including importing a sling for him. The same team of vets who operated on Triple Crown winner and champion sire-of-sires in America, Seattle Slew performed this procedure, inserting a a titanium basket (Bagby Basket) in the vertebral column to stabilize the joints and relieve the pressure on the spinal column, in an effort to allow the stallion to regain a quality of life and mobility.

Jet Masters’ story was akin to a fairy-tale. Bred in Kwa-Zulu Natal by Hugh Jonsson, he was born in 1994 and was spotted by Patricia Divine at the Mare and Weanling Sale in Pietermartizburg.

Even though Henry didn’t agree with the purchase of the weanling which at the time he thought was below par, on Patricia’s insistance, it turned out to be the best purchase they could have ever made, for just R15 000.

Jet Master initally went into training with Tony Millard, but after Tony left for Hong Kong Geoff Woodruff took over. Jet Master had an astounding racing career despite being plagued by breathing problems for which he was operated on. He will also be best remembered for his unusual companion in the form of a sheep who kept him company. From 24 starts, he had 17 wins – 8 of those being Grade 1 races, including winning the Queen’s Plate twice and was Horse-Of-The-Year twice.

He was sent to Highlands Stud intially for the covering fee of just R12 000. After 2 seasons he was moved to Klipdrift Farm. Jet Master’s covering fee rose to R200,000 at his peak, but the with the recession it was reduced to R150 000.

Jet Master has done South Africa proud as a racehorse, and a stallion, even more so that he is locally bred. From his first crop came Starlit, Floatyourboat, She’s On Fire, Stratos, Soft Landing and of course the great Pocket Power. The second crop contained Grade 1 winners River Jetez, Ravishing and Mythical Flight.

His globetrotting progeny include JJ The Jet Plane, River Jetez, and Mythical Flight.

However his most outstanding son to date is the unforgettable gelding who was retired earlier this year – Pocket Power won 20 times with nine Grade 1 titles – one better than his father. Among those were four Queen’s Plates, three Mets and a Durban July, a R190 000 yearling, he earned more then R10 Million in stakes earnings, and a book has been released this month in his honour.

Pocket Power’s full-sister River Jetez also has a Met trophy among her 12 victories, seven with black type. River Jetez has made her mark overseas recently, placing in Graded Stakes races in Dubai, America and Singapore, and she was recently entered into a sale as a broodmare/racing prospect at Keeneland earlier in November. JJ The Jet Plane has won 14 times in four different countries.

Ravishing - Summerhill Stud

Jet Master’s progeny have won 24 Grade 1 races and he has been SA’s champion stallion for the past five consecutive years, with Ebony Flyer currently flying the flag for him. His progeny have fetched record amounts at sales, including Devine’s Jet who sold for a South African recored of R4 million.

His sons at stud include the very aptly named Ravishing (and standing at Summerhill Stud in KZN) who is a Grade 1 South African Derby winner and himself a R1 million purchase at yearling sales. His progeny have averaged R100 000 at sales this year. In the Cape he is being represented by Royal Air Force at stud.

Our sincere condolences to Patricia and Henry Devine on the loss of a great stallion who will be sorely missed, but whose influence will be felt still in years to come through his progeny.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *