Gokhan Terzi seemed set for a sizzling afternoon at Borrowdale Park on Sunday when saddling the winners of the first two races – and then the wheels came off.
Main race of the day was the US$12 600 Independence Trophy over 1600m. Most dogs were barking for Terzi’s charge, Glorious Jet, but down at the start the Jet Master gelding dumped Apprentice Wesley Marwing, slipped his bridle and bolted back to the 2800m mark.
Although Glorious Jet then made his own way back he managed to find the gap in the railings and went skipping through the trees before being caught.
Prior to this drama both Alula Borealis and Two Gun Kid had been withdrawn by the Course Veterinary Surgeon for not striding out. Glorious Jet was also scratched for “blowing excessively”.
The reduced field finally got away to a fair break with Bridget Stidolph’s remaining three runners coming to the fore. Lucky Sam, having his second outing as a four-year-old won with authority, heading stable mates Killa Man and Menacing by 1.00 and 1.25 lengths respectively. Equina, victorious in the 2014 Castle Tankard (GR 1) and OK Grand Challenge (GR2), finished fourth. This time the Castle Tankard will be run on May 16 and it is encouraging to see some of the most likely main players coming back to their best.
Lucky Sam, by Imperial Stride (GB) and out of the Jallad mare, Cloud Ten, was bred by Milkwood Stud, and is owned by Rob Davenport and Sam Kajese. Once again Randall Simons was in the irons. At three years Lucky Sam won the Bloodstock South Africa 2000 (GR3), finished second to Equina in the 1800m OK Grand Challenge (GR2), then reversed that result in the 1900m Republic Cup (GR3).
The Stidolph yard also sent out the two horses which finished first and second in the1800m Maiden Plate. Rock Prince (Randall Simons) got the better of Neptune’s Rock (Francois Herholdt) by half a length. Both three-year-olds are by Seventh Rock (AUS) and are owned by Ingrid and Markus Jooste.
Of late Kirk Swanson’s stable has been quieter than usual but they came bouncing back on Sunday with two winners and the closest of second places.
First up was Mr M. Greene’s Parade Leader (USA) filly, Diversify, having her second race in Harare. Out of a Fort Wood mare, Diversify was ridden by claiming apprentice Norbert Takawira and won like a champion leaving long-time leader Second Light trailing 8 lengths back. Diversify started at 16/1 – another blow for reeling Pick 6 punters.
In the previous race, a 1600m Graduation Plate, the honours went to the Amy Bronkhorst-trained Supa Dupa, ridden by Karl Zechner. The AP Arrow filly was involved in a tight tussle with Swanson’s Nugget Effect (Kevin Derere), getting the verdict by 0.05 lengths. Neither Mica Point(18/10) nor Demitasse (28/10) featured.
Supa Dupa is owned by Zimbabwe racing stalwart John Koumides and bred by George Rowles. Mr Koumides returned to the winner’s enclosure when the fancied Changa, owned in partnership with Nadia Barnwell, won the last race, a 1000m Maiden Plate. This was Swanson’s second winner and the Mogok filly was bred by Nadia Barnwell.
Terzi’s two winners were first-timer Demagogue, owned by Gengis Goksel, in the 1000m Maiden Juvenile Plate, and St John Gray’s Fighting Force who scored in the 1300m MR 55 Handicap. Apprentice Wesley Marwing piloted both.
Changa, starting price 15/10, was the shortest priced winner of a Pick 6 race. The Borrowdale Park dividend was R420 966.80 with a Carry Over of R125 674.84.
The next Borrowdale Park race meeting is on Sunday, April 19. The feature race is the Zimbabwe Derby (GR3) to be run over 2400m.
Photographs: Gavin Macleod