Avontuur Thoroughbred Farm’s resident sire Var (whose juveniles have been firing on all cylinders) was responsible for a pair of eye catching debut winners at Kenilworth on Saturday.
The former sprint king’s tally of weekend winners included the brilliant Avontuur bred 2yo Valedictorian, who, despite hanging out in the closing stages, impressed in romping to a 4.25 length win on debut over 1000m.
Trained by Vaughan Marshall (whose past Var sired runners included former G1 winning 2yo Villandry), Valedictorian, out of the Western Winter mare Academia, was a R500 000 buy from the 2016 Cape Premier Yearling Sale.
He is the latest smart sort bred on the Var/Western Winter cross –with this mating having also resulted in the likes of stakes horses Le Var, Winter Passion and Western Storm, as well as the smart 2yo winner Varallo.
Valedictorian is the fifth juvenile winner this season for Var, whose other 2yo winners include the impressive debut winners Bank On It, Namibia, Trini’s Var Hyt and Varallo.
Var’s second Saturday debut winner came in the form of 3yo filly Straat-Kind, who justified favouritism by romping to a 3.75 length first out win over 1000 metres.
Bred and owned by Sabine Plattner, Straat-Kind is the eight winner for the stakes placed Elliodor mare Just Like Flo –also dam of G3 East Cape Derby winner Just Like Al. Straat-Kind is bred on the same Var/Elliodor cross as champion Val De Ra and brilliant 2yo stakes winner Exquisite Touch.
Also sire of this season’s high class feature race winner Rivarine, Var has two colts on offer at the Cape Yearling Sale next month –a colt out of regally bred stakes winner Victorian Secret (whose own sister Snowdance made an impressive recent winning debut) (Lot 75) and a colt out of G3 Acacia Handicap winner Amur Affair (Lot 92).
Var also has four lots on offer at the upcoming March Yearling Sale –including a filly (bred like Varallo and Valedictorian) out of a winning three parts sister to 2yo champ and sire Argonaut (Lot 16), a colt from the family of champion sprinter and Breeders’ Cup winner Sheikh Albadou (Lot77), a colt from the family of SA legend Horse Chestnut (Lot 97) and a filly from the famed Best In Show family, responsible for great fillies as Rags To Riches and Peeping Fawn (Lot 140).