Trainer Sean Tarry is just in remarkable form and as he heads towards his third successive Champion Trainer’s title he must almost be stunned by the unwavering success.
On a day in which Gauteng trainers dominated in three of the four Grade 1 races over 1200m, Tarry came away with two of them.
It was no surprise that Carry On Alice won the SA Fillies Sprint. She had won it two years ago and was weighted to do it again. She went off 2-1 favourite and was always travelling well under S’manga Khumalo. Once he hit the front it was all over.
Just 35 minutes later Tarry and Khumalo were back in the winner’s enclosure, this time with well-supported Bull Valley who had the form, if at his best, to win the Tsogo Sun Sprint. With the Tarry yard in this sort of form there was little doubt the four-year-old son of Toreador would be at his best.
It looked like anybody’s race as they came into the final 400m with Gulf Storm on the inside and Bull Valley wider out on the track but when Khumalo asked for an effort Bull Valley came to life and raced off to beat Search Party by 1.50 lengths. Barbosa (50-1) flew up to grab third from Gulf Storm and that resulted in a Quartet payout of R87,121. That’s why they are such great bets to play. It’s like a Pick 6 in every race!
“He does take a bit of a hard ride and he’s a big boy,” said Khumalo. “Mr Tarry just left everything to me and obviously where we were drawn, I was little bit worried. But I just decided to leave everything and let it play out.
“He jumped out and took a little bit of hold and I thought let me not fight him, let me just let him do his thing and he came back to me. He was so relaxed and I think it was at the 500m that I just squeezed him and he just took off.”
The most exciting prospect to come out of the meeting was Sea And Sand, who came from nowhere to win the Tsogo Sun Medallion for two-year-olds. This was trainer Dennis Drier’s seventh win in this race. Sand And Sea is a son of Twice Over and he is only going to get better over further. Definitely one to follow!
Trainer Paul Matchett pulled off the biggest upset of the four when Brave Mary, who went off at 30-1, led from the start and nobody got a blow in. She kept going under Gunter Wrogemann to beat 3-1 favourite Green Plains by 1.75 lengths in a faster time than that of Sand And Sea.
There seems to be some confusing information coming through about the future of Carry On Alice but there is one thing certain – this was her last run. According to a note on Sean Tarry’s website the aim is to get her to do stud duties in Australia (like National Colour) but as she will travel via the UK, the thought is to have her covered in the Northern Hemisphere if she travels well, and provided she cycles at the suitable time. “There are great stallions to go to, Frankel, Invincible Spirit, Camelot, to name but a few,” said John Koster, who is one of the owners.