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SA bloodlines to the fore

Posted 20 February 2018 at 09:10

The beleagured South African breeding industry received a welcome shot in the arm this weekend, with two outstanding performances on the world stage.

On Sunday, Drakenstein-bred Singapore Sling broke through with his first Hong Kong stakes success when he landed Sha Tin’s Gr.3 Hong Kong Classic over 1800m. Given a peach of a ride by young Chad Schofield, the gelding bided his time on the rail and hit the front a furlong out before powering home in fine style. It was a case of sweet revenge, as he had finished on the tail of Nothingilikemore (Husson) in last months’ Hong Kong Classic Mile. The Australian-bred favourite missed the start, lost a shoe and subsequently finished a non-threatening fourth.

Trained by Tony Millard and ridden by Chad Schofield, son of former KZN-based jock Glyn Schofield, it proved an all-South African success.

This was only Singapore Sling’s fourth start since arriving from South Africa, where he had won the Gr.2 Dingaans for Millard’s brother-in-law, trainer Geoff Woodruff, who had purchased the gelding for R225,000 as a yearling. The Hong Kong Derby could be next for the talented runner.

By Drakenstein resident Philanthropist, he is out of three-time winner Sing Dixie Sing, a Western Winter daughter of champion sprint mare Whistling Dixie (Raise A Man), whose son Grand Emporium (National Assembly) was Dubai’s International Horse of the year in 2004.

Coincidentally, Millard's father Terrance trained Singapore Sling’s third dam A Song Is Born (Jamaico), a stakes winner up to 2400m.

Just 24 hours earlier, Sheikh Hamdan’s homebred veteran Heavy Metal (Exceed And Excel), who is out of Ascot-bred champion juvenile filly Rock Opera (Lecture), continued his love affair with the Meydan racetrack on Saturday when he made most of running and turned the Gr.3 Firebreak Stakes into a tour de force, crossing the line almost ten lenghts clear of his field. Victorious in the Gr.2 Richmond Stakes at Goodwood as a juvenile, he has found a new lease on life since introduced to dirt racing at Meydan, this being his seventh over the course and 14th overall. – AvdB
(Picture: Kenneth Chan)

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