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Summerhill Sires 1-2 Ready To Run Cup

War Of Athena (left) and MK’s Pride (right) Image: JC Photos

Summerhill Equestrian saw a 1-2 in the weekends Peermont Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup presented by BSA, with Willow Magic’s son MK’s Pride snatching it in a close finish from the Act Of War’s sharp filly, the Gr1 placed War Of Athena.

It is also the smashing story for lucky owner Mr M K Nkale, whose colt that passed through the BSA Ready To Run Sale in 2019 unsold. [Watch his Ready To Run Gallop HERE]

The colt, a dead ringer for sire Willow Magic and a grandson of the mighty Dubawi, has won 3 times from 4 starts trained by Paul Peter and took home the lions share of the R900 000 stake on offer on Saturday.

MK’s Pride, originally named Alaunus is out of an Admire Main mare, who has produced a previous winner and is a half-sister to Gr2 placed Corredor.

This is also the family of Gondolier, Freedom Charter and Ernie.

MK’s Pride in the Ready To Run sales ring, where he didn’t get a bid or at the Shongweni Sale. Image: Candiese Lenferna

A Gr1 winning sprinter, Willow Magic has produced 10 wins this season.

Trainer Paul Peter said he was thrilled that the fairytale had unfolded for the Nkale family.

“When I spoke to Koos before the race, he said what will be will be. So no pressure – even from a brand new owner. He has been in racing for thirty years so understands the game. He has a beautiful laid-back horse. We will go next for the Dingaans. MK’s Pride will enjoy the mile. We will only see the best from this chap later on,” an elated Peter told the Sporting Post.

In an emotional – and lengthy – post race interview, Mr Nkale, who selected and bought the winner himself for R100 000, indicated that he was a spiritual man, who was thrilled for his family, the Peter team, and even for South Africa.

“When I saw Summer Pudding win, I decided Mr Paul Peter was my trainer. This is a wonderful day for racing and for South Africa – we prayed and I thank the Almighty,” he said.

In a further chapter of a genuine fairytale of a story, MK’s Pride races in the black and gold of soccer side, Kaizer Chiefs. Mr Nkale is one of the most passionate of the top team’s 16 million supporters.

MK’s Pride has earned R531 600 and has won 3 of his 4 starts.

With the scratching of Anything Goes, War Of Athena was a firm favourite to take the race.

Act Of War, a Gr1 winning son of Dynasty has had 5 wins this season and has produced Black Type with two fillies – twice Gr1 placed War Of Athena and Stella Act, the latter has a full sister on offer at the upcoming National 2YO Sale consigned by Rathmor Stud as agent.

War Of Athena in the Ready To Run sales ring. Image: Candiese Lenferna

Paul Matchett is very shrewd at picking quality horses for little money, and War Of Athena is another example – having sold for just R30 000 – Paul’s other success was Gr1 winning French export Brave Mary (R40 000), and multiple Gr2 winner Running Brave (R30 000 purchase).

She has pure Summerhill pedigree, being out of a Requiem / Coastal mare who has produced 4 other winners, and from the family of Captain Tatters and Desert Links. She placed a very close 2nd to unbeaten Anything Goes in her penultimate start, to finish 2nd in the Gr1 Thekweni Stakes.

Contact stud@capitalstud.co.za for more information on Act Of War and Willow Magic.

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