The West Is Wide!
There has been a tremendous “Western” influence on recent stakes races and sires list in South Africa of late.
Gone West is the sire of champion Western Winter, who has been enjoying one of the finest seasons of his illustrious career. Sire of champion What A Winter and dual classic winning colt Capetown Noir, the great stallion looks set to dominate the weekend’s feature races all over South Africa.
Western Winter’s progeny are favourite for no fewer than three features this weekend. Unbeaten 2yo, Red Ray, is a 1-4 shot for Saturday’s Listed Somerset 1200, while Sunday sees Capetown Noir make his much awaited return to the races.
The latter is a 1-4 fancy to win Gr3 The Independant on Sunday Byerley Turk, a R200 000 feature run at Scottsville. On the same card, Western Winter filly, Izora, is an even chance to take top honours in the Gr3 The Independant on Sunday Umzimkhulu Stakes.
Western Winter, sire of 19 individual Gr1 winners to date, is currently sixth on the general sires list, and eighth on the 2yo sires list.
Another son of Gone West is Sail From Seattle, who is currently South Africa’s leading first crop sire.
The Ascot Stud resident stallion has made a tremendous start to his stud career, with his first crop of juveniles having already unveiled a stakes winner in Seattle Storm, as the well as the smart, stakes placed colt Navistar.
Both Western Winter and Sail From Seattle are well represented at the National Sale, with Western Winter’s 23 strong draft including a filly out of champion Private Reserve, as well as a half-brother to champion Let’s Rock ‘N Roll.
Sail From Seattle has 17 yearlings on sale, including a half-brother to G1 winner Silver Arc, and a half-brother to stakes winning filly Sammy Jo.
However, the Gone West factor does not end there. Klawervlei’s resident stallion Count Dubois, a son of Gone West sire Zafonic, has been in tremendous form of late.
He has had two feature race winners in one week – which is a tremendous feat. Count Dubois’s son Roman Wall landed the Listed Easter Handicap while six days later Count Dubois filly Kinematic Countess won the Gr3 Sycamore Sprint – both horses picking up their first feature wins in the process.
Count Dubois has two beautifully bred yearlings on offer at the National Sale, one is a filly out of National Colour’s own sister, Kaleido, and the other being a half-sister to uber promising 2yo Mighty Var.