Who Can Handle The Derby Trip?

When Diesel And Dust canters down to the start at Borrowdale Park on Sunday his connections will be hoping Futura’s capable son will complete a hat-trick of wins – in the 2021 Zimbabwe Derby, no less.

The three-year-old gelding has only raced twice and collected admirers on each occasion.  His last outing was in the Zimbabwe 2000 on April 18 and he handled that trip well. Sunday’s race is over 2400m and none of the runners have tried that yet.

Diesel And Dust is from the Swanson yard, and he will be taking on his stable companions, Magnus Maximus and Rocquette.  Bridget Stidolph will saddle Only Him, by Mambo In Seattle (USA), and a recent arrival at Borrowdale.

Also lightly raced, Only Him won over 1400m at The Vaal, and at the last Borrowdale meeting he ran two lengths off Hedwig over 1600m. Magnus Maximus, by Jackson, is a three-time winner – twice over 1200m, and the 1600m Guineas Trial on January 17 where he narrowly beat Obscure.

The Jay Peg filly, Rocquette, is still a maiden but has had several races around the turn. To date she has been somewhat unreliable but, in this field where the ability to stay the Derby distance has to be taken on trust, I am not discounting anyone.

This will certainly be an interesting race. Diesel And Dust has proved himself over 2000m and looks to be the one the others must beat.

Photographs: TOP: The finish of the Zimbabwe 2000 when Diesel And Dust defeated Mazikeen. BELOW: Magnus Maximus held off Obscure in the Guineas Trial.

Sunday’s Winners

Photographs by Gavin MacLeod

The Gokhan Terzi yards won six of the seven races at Borrowdale Park on Sunday, including the Independence Trophy with Daffiq.

Bred by Wilgerbosdrift and Mauritzfontein, Daffiq is by Silvano (GER). This was the seven-year-old’s fifth win. He is owned by Gengiz Goksel and Randall Simons was riding. Finchatton, Three To Tango and Yarraman were placed.

Doubleosevenagain broke the Terzi stranglehold in the 1700m MR 73 Handicap, holding off a challenge from the Terzi runner, Milford Sound. DoubleOSevenAgain, by Century Stand (AUS), has now won four races and Apprentice Walter Shumba was riding for Thomas Mason. The five-year-old gelding is owned by Johnny Dardagan.

Congratulations to all the winning connections.

Borrowdale Racing Today

Racing at Borrowdale Park today begins at 13 25 and the last race – the Independence Trophy – is at 16 31. The available information about card changes, tips, the online card, etc is on this site.

The live stream will be on Clocking The Gallop on U-Tube. Links on this site and on https://www.facebook.com/zimracing/ and https://www.facebook.com/racinginzim/ if you prefer Facebook.

Photograph Zimbabwe Equine News.


At last, some encouraging news after a bleak year for the Zimbabwe racing industry.The 1800m 0K Grand Challenge (Gr2) will be back at Borrowdale Park on Saturday June 5, 2021.

This major event on our racing calendar was cancelled last year because of the COVID-19 lockdown. Congratulations to the sponsors, OK Zimbabwe, and the Mashonaland Turf Club, for biting the bullet and preparing for a return to normality. Hopefully, some of Borrowdale’s other major sponsors will follow suit.

Nominations for this US$70 000 event are due on May 19, Weights and Draws will be published on May 21, at 12 00 pm, and Final Declarations must be made by 9 am on May 24.

The MTC has announced that for all (GR1) and (GR2) events at Borrowdale, horses must have had at least one start in Zimbabwe before being nominated for these races.

Photographs by Gavin MacLeod, Zimbabwe Equine News, and Rosie Dorward, of flashbacks to some former OK Grand Challenges. A reminder of what we have been missing while bearing in mind that COVID is still with us and at this stage there is no way of knowing how many spectators will be at the course.

Fascinating – but unlikely to be a walkover

Hedwig, a robust, long-striding filly, won by a country mile up the straight on debut, and at Borrowdale Park on Sunday she will race around the turn in a 1600m MR 80 Handicap.

Although eagerly anticipating seeing this daughter of Master Of My Fate race over more ground, I was not expecting her to give weight to the entire field. Hedwig has only had two starts but collected a Merit Rating of 75 after her Maiden win, in a three-horse race. The two well-beaten participants, Peaceable and Green Serenity, have subsequently proved they are better suited when going further.

On April 18 Hedwig ran in the 1200m MR 80 Handicap (3YO) won by Jubilee, and finished 10 lengths behind him, with Sunday’s runner Ana Lane further back. There were several proven sprinters here and it was no surprise when Hedwig failed to shine.

All things being equal I would have been wildly enthusiastic about Hedwig this Sunday, but this will be an acid test for the lightly raced filly. She is taking on her peers – two geldings, Only Him and Suave Judge, and three fillies, Ultra Edge, Ana Lane and Seattle Swift. Only Him will receive 3 kgs from Hedwig, and Seattle Swift, if *Walter Shumba claims 2 kgs, will receive 10.

Only Him
, by Mambo In Seattle (USA) out of a Captain Al mare, raced three times at the Vaal and was placed in both starts over 1600m before winning over 1400m on April 14. Providing he travelled well he rates respect.

Suave Judge, a son of Judpot (USA) carries 56 kgs to Hedwig’s 60 kgs, and has won twice over a mile, in open company. His last start was in the Zimbabwe 2000 where he did not shape but Sunday’s trip should suit him. Calvin Habib is in the irons.

Master Of My Fate also sired Ultra Edge and she will carry 53 kgs, while Ana Lane, by Coup de Grace (USA) and a winner over 1260m, is on 52.

Ultra Edge recently won over 1450m and has been placed over 1600m.

By Alado (GB), *Shumba’s ride, Seattle Swift, scored in a 1600m Maiden Plate in January and was four lengths off Mazikeen in a 1600m Novice Plate in March. With weight on her side Seattle Swift cannot be ignored.

This is a competitive field and even if Hedwig lives up to my previous expectations it will not be a walkover. Randall Simons rides.

This race is the sixth on Sunday’s 7-race card and is due off at 16.03. The Independence Trophy follows at 16.31 and the race meeting begins at 13.25.

Photograph by Zimbabwe Equine News: Hedwig, seen here with Hennie Greyling up, won her first start on March 7.

Tough Taking On This Trio

Six line up for the 1600m Independence Trophy at Borrowdale Park on Sunday (May 2) and three of them – PEGGSON, YARRAMAN and THREE TO TANGO. need no introduction to Borrowdale punters.

This trio have been meeting and beating each other for quite a while and the chances are they will fill the first three places.  All are distance suited but Peggson will be giving away a couple of kilos.

However as there are no racing certainties let’s look at the three hopefuls.

DAFFIQ, is a 7-year-old gelding By Silvano (GER) out of a Horse Chestnut mare. He won once at Turffontein over 1450m in 2017 and placed over further.  He has had four starts at Borrowdale and won over 1260m in June and 1200m in July. Randall Simons rides.

Diego de Gouveia will be aboard FINCHATTON, a nine-year-old gelding by Right Approach (GB) out of a Fort Wood mare. Finchatton won four races at the Vaal over 1400m, 1600m and 2000m. His only start at Borrowdale was on April 18 when four lengths off Silver Coin over 1200m, but this was probably on the short side.

Five-year-old MAGIC MIKE, the mount of Teaque Gould, is by Twice Over (GB).  He won a Maiden 1600m at Kenilworth in December 2018 and placed over 1800m. Has had three starts at Borrowdale over 1600m and ran a close second to Viscountess Vivien on April 4 when Flapjack, Bam Bam Pebbles and Edward The Seventh were behind him.

While wishing the ‘hopefuls’ well I will be surprised to see a major upset.  On paper Yarraman and Three To Tango seem most likely to fight out this finish.

Photographs by Zimbabwe Equine News

Great Run From Diesel And Dust

Diesel And Dust (nearest camera above) won the Zimbabwe 2000 (Gr3) – second leg of the Triple Crown – at Borrowdale Park on Sunday, overtaking Mazikeen in the final stages.

So there will be no Zimbabwe Triple Crown winner this year as Dindingwe, winner of the first leg, the Zimbabwe Guineas, ran third this afternoon. True Beauty was fourth.

By Futura, Diesel And Dust has now won both his starts. He is owned by Sibongile Moyo and George Tafeni, and was bred by Mr M J Reid. Kevin Derere rode the winner for the Swanson yard.

Congratulations to the winning connections. It was an impressive victory.

Photograph Zimbabwe Equine News.

Borrowdale Racing Today

The first race is due off at 13 20 and the last race – the Zimbabwe 2000 (L) – at 16 30. You will find the available information about card changes, tips, the online card, etc here.

The live stream will be on Clocking The Gallop on U-Tube. Links, on this site and @zimracing and @racinginzim if you prefer Facebook.

Enjoy your Sunday and the rest of the weekend.

Photograph Zimbabwe Equine News.

ZimFun Will Be Back In Action

Karoo Winter steps out in the 1600m Maiden Plate in the colours of ZimFun Racing Club (Pty) Ltd – and will have far more owners rooting for her, across several continents, than any other horse racing at Borrowdale Park on Sunday.

The daughter of Futura out of a Western Winter (USA) mare has had one start at Borrowdale when third behind Peaceable and Black Duke over 1800m. Prior to that she raced in the Cape, not in ZimFun silks, and placed over 1600m.

ZimFun has already had a winner – Tricky Business – and hope to have more – soon – and members -so they can buy more horses. It is not too late to join the fun, and this is the most economical way to become an owner as one share costs $100.

On Sunday Karoo Winter (57kgs) takes on Green Serenity, Hawi, Bold Idyll, Global Tree and Fendi Girl and all their owners will be hoping for some improvement. I had a quick glance at previous form and will definitely not be making any forecasts.

Green Serenity (60kgs) is by Gimmethegreenlight (AUS) out of a Western Winter (USA) mare. Has had seven runs in the Cape and one at Borrowdale when nearly 11 lengths behind first-timer Hedwig over 1200m. Hawi (60kgs) is by Vercingetorix out of an Al Mufti (USA) mare. He has placed in all his six starts from 1100m to 1700m. Randall Simons rides.

Bold Idyll is a son of Bold Silvano out of an Ideal World (USA) mare. Unimpressive over 1100m and 1700m – so far. He is set to carry 60 kgs but Apprentice Rodgers Satombo will claim 2.5 kgs. Global Tree (60kgs) is by Global View (USA) out of a Classic Flag mare. Didn’t shape in two sprints – his only outings – but may appreciate the longer trip.

Last but not least is Fendi Girl (57 kgs), by Fencing Master (GB) out of a Kitalpha (USA) mare. Has raced from 1100m to 1700m, and rather in and out, but with Calvin Habib in the irons might come right.

Why am I devoting so much time and space to a Maiden Plate? Intimidated, probably, by the thought of Karoo Winter’s owners who will be at Borrowdale Park – and the others who will be watching the live stream on Clocking The Gallop on U-Tube – like hawks.

Win or lose they will make sure they have a good time. This race is due off at 14 25.

Photograph by Jenny Stock of Zimbabwe Equine News

Spotlight On Dindingwe

At this point in time Dindingwe is the only three-year-old in Zimbabwe who could win both the 2021 Zimbabwe Triple Tiara and the 2021 Zimbabwe Triple Crown.

Last time out the Swanson stable’s formidable filly won the 1800m Silver Slipper by a breathtaking 16 lengths – having previously won the 1600m Fillies Classic, the first leg of the Triple Tiara. She need only win the Zimbabwe Oaks to be assured of bagging the Tiara.

On Sunday Dindingwe lines up for the 2000m Zimbabwe 2000 (Gr 3) – the second leg of the Triple Crown. She won the first leg – the Zimbabwe Guineas – on 21 March, finishing a quarter of a length ahead of stablemate True Beauty.

These three-year-old Classics are designed to test both speed and stamina, and stamina will come into play when Sunday’s five runners meet over 2000m. Dindingwe handled the 1800m Silver Slipper trip with style. Suave Judge has finished 5.75 lengths off Prescott over 1800m, and the rest have still to prove themselves over more ground.

Apprentice Rodgers Satombo will ride Dindingwe as usual. The three fillies, Dindingwe, True Beauty and Mazikeen will carry 55.5 kgs, while Diesel And Dust and Suave Judge heft 58 kgs.

Let’s look at the field:

Race-7 (Turf) US$ 1,800 2000m 16:30
ZIMBABWE 2000 (Grade 3)

No Apprentice Allowance

1 (1) DIESEL AND DUST 58kgs (MR76) A – Derere – Kirk Swanson.
An interesting runner, Diesel and Dust is a stable companion of Dindingwe and True Beauty – and like Dindingwe his sire is Futura. He has only run once on February 24 in soft conditions, when he beat subsequent winner Ultra Edge by four lengths over 1200m. The dark horse without a doubt.

2 (5) SUAVE JUDGE 58kgs (MR67) A – Simons – Gokhan Terzi.
By Judpot (USA) and a two-time winner over 1600m. He finished 0.10 lengths in front of Haga Haga on 24 February when in receipt of 1.5 kgs, when the going was soft. Calvin Habib has the ride again and perhaps Suave Judge will surprise us.

3 (2) DINDINGWE 55.5kgs (MR90) A – *Satombo – Kirk Swanson.
Won 6 of 7 starts including the Champion Juvenile Stakes (Gr3), Breeders Fillies Mile (L), Fillies Classic, Zimbabwe Guineas (Gr3) and the Silver Slipper (L). Only defeated by True Beauty in a close finish to the 1200m Jacaranda Free Handicap in October.

4 (3) TRUE BEAUTY 55.5kgs (MR88) A – Gates – Kirk Swanson.
Winner of three of her nine starts and on four occasions bridesmaid to Dindingwe. Mazikeen was matron of honour in the 1600m Fillies Classic when 3 lengths off Dindingwe, and that day True Beauty was behind her. True Beauty was a late scratching from the 1800m Silver Slipper so has yet to try further than 1600m. However, her dam is by Silvano (GER) which is a plus.

5 (4) MAZIKEEN 55.5kgs (MR75) AM – C Habib – Gokhan Terzi
By Twice Over (GB) out of a Black Minnaloushe (USA) mare, Mazikeen won her last start, a 1600m Novice Plate on March 7, beating Seattle Swift and Magic Mike by several lengths. Has yet to race further than the mile.

Photographs by Zimbabwe Equine News and Andrew Philip

Colours Hold The Key…to interesting racing

Racing at Borrowdale Park tomorrow (Sunday) includes two listed feature events, the 1800m Silver Slipper and the 2000m Breeders Champion Cup – small fields but a perfect opportunity for newcomers to memorise some colours (racing silks) which makes watching races far more interesting.

Commentators do a marvellous job – and need to know all the colours – but during a race it helps tremendously if one has memorised the silks of the horses one is particularly interested in. While listening to the commentary you can also keep tabs on “your” horses from start to finish.

Some oldtimers claim they know every owner’s and syndicate’s colours – and maybe they do – but memorising a few before each race is a good way to start. The colours are described in the race card and you can do your homework before every race when the horses are in the parade ring or on the way to the start.

The Silver Slipper (L)
, second leg of the Triple Tiara, includes Dindingwe (winner of the Fillies Classic, the first leg), and her long-time rival, True Beauty, winner of the Tote Free Handicap. Peaceable will race in the familiar colours of Newbury Racing (Pty) Ltd (think about Simona, Prescott and Wantage) and Rocquette sports those of her trainer, Kirk Swanson.

Only Peaceable has form over 1800m, but even so most punters will be expecting another duel between Dindingwe and True Beauty. Whichever way the cookie crumbles, after the race newbies should remember those colours.

The Breeders Champion Cup (L) is the next race on the card and luckily, of the five runners Three To Tango will race in the same colours as Dindingwe, and Wantage represents Newbury Racing. Mr Greenlight and Yarraman race in the colours of Gengiz Goksel (one of the jockeys will wear a different colour cap) and anyone who has watched Borrowdale racing should easily recognise those black and purple silks. So that leaves Greenwood Drive whose rider will wear white, with a blue band of diamonds, yellow sleeves and cap.

This is quite a formidable line-up, and anyone could win.

The first of the seven races is due off at 13 25, the Silver Slipper at 15 55 and the Breeders Champion Cup at 16 30. You will find tomorrow’s tips on this site – as well as the online race card.

Three For Terzi

Borrowdale Park training honours went to the Gokhan Terzi yard with three winners on Sunday, Mind Master (above), Double Dab and Hold The Biscuit.

The Master Of My Fate gelding, Mind Master, won the 1100m Graduation Plate, bringing his tally to three wins and five places in 11 outings. He was bred by Dr M Thomson, Ambience Stud, and Caleb Habib had the ride.

The winning owners are Gengiz Goksel, Mike Eaton, Gary Carter and Paula Lewis.

Congratulations everyone.

Photograph Zimbabwe Equine News