KZN And The Cape Awards

KZN And The Cape Awards

Tales Of Bravery, winning the Gr 2 Drill Hall Stakes this year. Image: Gold Circle

KZN’s breeding influence is being felt nationally, and in particular, in the Cape, with two horses up for separate Award nominations by KZN-resident stallions – Tales Of Bravery and King’s Temptress.

The first is Tales Of Bravery who has a KZN tale to tell. He has been nominated in the 2012 Western Province Racing Award Nominees for Champion Older Male owing to his win in the Gr 2 Drill Hall Stakes in the current season. Owned by the late Roy Eckstein, he is a nine-time winner and has placed nine times, earning over R1,3 million in stakes. His wins include the Gr 2 Matchem Stakes and Gr 3 Winter classic and placing second in the L’Ormarins Queens Plate and Gr 1 Point Stakes. He recently placed behind Variety Club in the Grade 1 Rising Sun Gold Challenge.

By Kahal out of Emperor’s Warning (by Caesour), he was conceived by Backworth Stud in Eston, KZN. Keith Russon relays the story about Emperor’s Warning who was a mare that carried her foals well over the normal gestation term, approximately 12 months.

She had two foals for Backworth Stud – the first was a Strike Smartly filly named Smart Empress who subsequently sold for R100 000 at the National Yearling Sales; she went on to be a winner and placed five times, earning herself a deserved place as a broodmare with her fine pedigree.

Emperor’s Warning was covered again, this time by Malhub which produced Emporio. The colt went on to sell for R180 000 at the 2007 National Yearling Sales and he went on to win at the track.

Keith Russon sent Emperor’s Warning to be covered by Kahal, and after she was tested in foal, he decided to enter her onto a broodmare sale with a reserve of R60 000, with the intention that he would take her home if the reserve wasn’t reached.

To Keith’s surprise, she reached an incredible price of R200 000, John Slade bidding on behalf of the Victory Moon Syndicate, so she was let go. She was sold in foal to Kahal and sent to foal at Riverton Stud in the Cape. The product of that mating was a colt, and he was sold as an unnamed Lot at the 2008 Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale for R100 000. His new owners named him Tales Of Bravery.

The mare was once again put up for sale and has come full circle, returning to KZN where she stands at Spring Valley Stud.

Three yearlings have been consigned for Spring Valley Stud since – Dancer’s Warning by Kabool is a winner, Emperor’s Victory (R110 000 yearling) by Victory Moon has placed and the last by Mogok, a filly named Meet Me Halfway (R100 000 yearling), who placed a very close second in her debut run at Greyville on 22 June this year.

Meet Me Halfway, by Mogok, bred by Spring Valley Stud and trained by Gavin Van Zyl. Image:   Gypsy's Warning in the sale ring last year at Keeneland, where she sold for $US 1, 050 000. Image:   Gypsy Queen with her 2011 Fort Wood filly. Image: Candiese Marnewick

Keith said in hindsight, if he had have known what he knew now – after Gypsy’s Warning and the like came along – he would never have parted ways with her.

As most breeders will tell you, horses will often produce their best after you sell them – akin to stallions who die and leave behind an exceptional crop of foals, sadly the most recent stallions to prove this are Stronghold and Cataloochee.

The mating to Mogok to produce Meet Me Halfway is an interesting one in light of the fact that Mogok is a half-brother to Machiavellian, the sire of Kahal who produced Tales Of Bravery. Another interesting link is the success Mogok has had with this dam-line, in producing Gypsy’s Warning, making Meet Me Halfway a three-quarter sister to Gypsy’s Warning. Based on her recent debut run and trained by Gavin Van Zyl, she is going to be a filly to watch.

Emperor’s Warning comes from an exceptional dam-line, one which is a proven success for Rathmor Stud. Their KZN Broodmare-Of-The-Year for 2011, Gypsy Queen (by Royal Chalice), is a half-sister to Emperor’s Warning. She is the dam of Gypsy’s Warning, multiple Grade 1 winner in South Africa and America – who went onto sell for almost R10-million at the Keeneland November Sale last year in Kentucky.

Mike McHardy of Rathmor Stud has put the mare into foal to Kahal and she will be due to foal down this season, an interesting mating in light of Tales Of Bravery, a pedigree that has proved successful with Coup de Folie. Gypsy Queen has not only produced Gypsy’s Warning but also Grade 2 winner Surabi. Gypsy Queen has a Two Year Old filly in training by Fort Wood with Mike Bass, named Gypsy Madonna. The filly was bought as a yearling for R1 350 000 by Varsfontein Stud as a broodmare prospect from Rathmor. Gypsy Queen has another outstanding looking weanling this year, a big bay filly again by Fort Wood, very much in a similar mould to Gypsy’s Warning in looks.

This exceptional dam-line includes half-siblings to both Gypsy Queen and Emperor’s Warning such as multiple Group winning full-sisters Royal Prophecy and Noble Destiny, all out of the Caveat(USA) mare Sara’s Warning(USA). A dam-line filled with Bold Black Type and too many to mention, one that stands out under the third dam is Pierre Jourdan, another multiple Group winner (who ran second in the Vodacom Durban July in 2011 to Igugu) has earned R4,5 million in stakes – he was sold as a Two Year Old for R60 000 by Summerhill Stud.

King's Temptress. Image:

The Cape Breeders Awards Nominations have also been released and a daughter of King Of Kings has been nominated for Champion Two Year Old Filly – King’s Temptress for Waterford Stud. A R70 000 yearling purchase, her debut run made everyone sit up and take notice. Not only did she debut in the SA Fillies Nursery (Gr.2), (odds of 150-1), she beat a strong field of fillies including the unbeaten Franny and Ilha Da Rock.

Amid controversy, she changed trainers after her scintillating debut and has been sent to KZN, where she has had two starts. She ran a month later after her debut for her new trainer and finished shortly out of the placings at Scottsville in the Allan Robertson Grade 1. On Vodacom Durban July day she found her feet again and placed in the Golden Slipper Gr 1 over 1400m, defeating amongst them All Is Secret, Dylan’s Promise(AUS) and once again Ihla Da Rock. King’s Temptress comes up against Franny and All Is Secret for the above Award.

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