Click above to watch post race interviews with
Anthony Delpech, Mike de Kock and Tony Moodley
(Footage : Tellytrack)
“OF RED, YELLOW AND EMERALD SILKS, EQUAL IMAGE AND HAVASHA”
In today’s The Citizen, Nicci Garner writes that racehorse owner Tony Moodley would have been saddened by the retirement of Equal Image last month. After all, the big grey had made his red, yellow and emerald silks famous with his exploits, and foibles, on SA racetracks.
But there’s no keeping “lucky’’ silks out of the limelight, so there was never any doubt that another Moodley-owned star would soon be carrying all before him. He emerged at Turffontein last Saturday in the form of a three-year-old Kahal colt called Havasha, co-owned by Tony Moodley, the Freeracer Syndicate and trainer Mike de Kock.
Havasha had made a winning debut at Clairwood in a 1200m sprint last month and was an easy-to-back 5-2 favourite for his first appearance on the Highveld, possibly because De Kock had said earlier in the afternoon that, although he rated him a good horse, inexperience would count against him.
Delpech had him one off the fence in mid-division as first King William and then Desert Kite set the early pace. Havasha was boxed in for a number of strides before Delpech switched him out and around Mzingeli around 500m from the line. He steadily made up the leeway on the leaders as Forest Of Dreams under Gunter Wrogemann put in a powerful finishing effort from the back.
These two drew clear of their rivals inside the final 100m to fight out a neck-and-neck tussle with Havasha digging deep to get the verdict by a head from the top-weight.
Anthony Delpech commented on Tellytrack afterwards: “I thought if he wins today he’ll be a very smart horse because it was his first time at this track and he only got here couple of days ago. Everything was against us.”
“Coming into the straight I had to pull him back and come out because I had nowhere to go. So it was really a good win for him. He’s a smart horse to win a race like this.’’
Mike de Kock was thrilled with the run and said Havasha would probably have one more run before lining up in the Emperors Palace Ready To Run Stakes later this year “to get him battle hard’’.
With typical Tony Moodley generosity, he acknowledged his great affection for Summerhill-bred racehorses, remembering that his first (and highly performed) SEE A PENNY was a graduate of those paddocks.