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By Mike Moon

Horse racing correspondent

Adios to CTS and the stain of Jooste

The Ready to Run sale will be on the same date and at the same venue as a previously scheduled CTS dale.

Changes in Western Cape racing and breeding are happening faster than the mighty Goofy (aka Golden Loom) used to finish his races.

No sooner had Cape Racing announced the establishment of a sales division, the existing Cape Thoroughbred Sales announced it was stepping aside, voluntarily dissolving itself after 11 years – in the interests of unity in the industry.

No sooner had that happened when the brand-new operation unveiled its first sale – in less than two months’ time, on 29 October. The Ready to Run sale will be on the same date and at the same venue as a previously scheduled CTS dale.

ALSO READ: The remarkable Hollywoodbets story keeps unfolding

Guys, couldn’t you just have made one, joint announcement and simplified all our lives?

At least Cape Racing did simultaneously announce its usurping of CTS’s annual January Premier Yearling Sale (powered by Tattersalls) – at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on 12 January 2023. Hilariously, it said this “coincides with the same venue and date of CTS’s previously scheduled previously yearling sale” (sic).

There won’t be many tears shed at the disappearance of CTS, given its close association with disgraced moneybags Markus Jooste, who was on the way to creating a personal dynasty in South African horse racing to mimic his fraudulent Steinhoff empire in business.

The stain of Jooste is something racing can do without as it tries to resurrect itself from financial ruin.

Further Cape Racing sale dates – for 2023 and 2024 – will be announced “in due course”.

The remarkable Greg Bortz, the man behind the ongoing major shake-up in Cape Town racing, commented: “Our sales company will be working hard developing an innovative sales calendar for the years ahead, coupled with sales races and events that fit hand in glove with our enhanced fixture schedule and other exciting initiatives.

“We believe that the trifecta of our beautiful city, outstanding racecourses and fantastic horses will make the Cape an equine destination for international and local buyers and racegoers alike. We intend to do things a little differently.

“We are hopeful that all our country’s breeders will really be supportive given that 100% of all profits earned from any sales will be invested into stakes. This will raise the profile of the industry, attract more buyers, and benefit our breeders even further. There will be no leakage of profits out of the industry, which is the core rationale behind our entering the sales arena to begin with.”

Cape Racing has also agreed to hold and fund the sales races previously announced by CTS. These include the upcoming Ready to Run race to be held at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Sunday 30 October for a stake of R600,000, the Gold Rush 1 race for a stake of R7.5-million to be held on World Sports Betting Met Day in January 2023 and will continue with Gold Rush 2 in 2024.

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