The opening of Champions Season in KZN kicked off on Saturday, and saw the World Sports Betting Dash over 400m and the Gr2 World Sports Betting Fillies Guineas make KZN winners on the day.
The Piemonte-bred Faustino, by Crusade out of fast Var mare Wishful Eye, jump from the 400m in a race so blistering fast that if you blinked you would miss it! He scrambled to just over an easy length clear under Kaiden Brewer, with Kaiden able to enjoy his win before hitting the finish line, for trainer Kom Naidoo and owners Messrs Kenny K Govender, E C Abraham, Rajan Naidoo, Mesdames D Jithoo and Trinisha Pillay.
#kznbred grey Varvacious finished third, just one and a half lengths off. Her Gr2 Gauteng Fillies Guineas winning dam Go Indigo stands at Bush Hill Stud.
Both horses have speed sire Var in common. Deceased sire Crusade, who has his fair share of winners each week had plenty of speed in his own family and he was a winner of the Gr1 Middle Park Stakes over 1200m.
Faustino’s Vercingetorix half-sister recently sold at Nationals for R500 000 and it is going to be exciting to follow her for owner Manie Pillay. The dam Wishful Eye already has a healthy record at stud with Filippo leading the way.
Under Your Spell was the whisper in the parade ring on the day, after finishing just three quarters of a length off Princess Calla in the Gr1 HSH Princess Charlene Empress Club Stakes exactly two weeks before that, and brought it to fruition – winning with much in hand by three quarters of a length from Supreme Quest.
Ridden by Calvin Habib for Sean Tarry, it is the 6th win for the daughter of Capetown Noir (who resides at Piemonte Stud) for breeders Summerhill Stud.
Already a winner of the Gr1 Allan Robertson and the runner up of the Equus Award for champion 2yo filly last season, the next 90 days look exciting for Under Your Spell, owned in partnership by Sean Tarry Racing (Pty) Ltd and Mrs BMA Lahoud and Messrs M A Currie, C N Francis, A Lahoud, Jarryd Lahoud, Allan F Peters, Larry Pogir and Craig Zoghby.
She is a half-sister to the smart Gr3 winning stayer Witchcraft (Kahal) and Black Type Sean Tarry trained In Cahoots (Visionaire), the Kingmambo mare very well bred from the family of Casey Tibbs.
If Under Your Spell is considered for the KZN Mile for a stake of R600 000 the week before the running of the Hollywoodbets Durban July on KZN Breeders Race Day, there is now doubt she would be strongly favoured for that race.
There is a Rabada colt to follow bred by Suikerbosview Stud, sold to MJ Odendaal in 2021 for R150 000 at the Nationals.
Mogok, semi retired at Homeleigh Stud in Camperdown KZN, is the broodmare sire of two smart individuals – one being Saturdays Gr2 World Sports Guineas winner Zapatillas and Mike De Kock has a smart juvenile colt, unbeaten from two starts named Shoemaker – both bred by `Varsfontein. This is Varsfontein’s family of Eden Roc, Townsend and Regal Ransom.
Well done to all concerned!