Equus Treble For Legal Eagle
For the second successive year Legal Eagle was named Equus Horse Of The Year at a gala banquet held at Emperors Palace last night.
SON OF GREYS INN NAMED EQUUS HORSE OF THE YEAR FOR 2016-17 SEASON
Carry On Alice wins awards as Champion Sprinter and Champion Older Mare.
Legal Eagle, trained by Sean Tarry and owned by Mayfair Speculators, won two Grade 1 events, both of which he had won a year earlier – the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate at Kenilworth and the HF Oppenheimer Horse Chestnut Stakes at Turffontein, He also finished second in the Grade 1 Sun Met at Kenilworth and the President’s Champions Challenge at Turffontein.
This six-year-old son of Greys Inn also won two other awards – for Champion Older Male and for Champion Miler.
It was a great award ceremony for Sean Tarry as he was not only given the award for Champion Trainer for the third successive year and trains Legal Eagle, but he also saw mare Carry On Alice walk off with two awards – Champion Sprinter and Champion Older Filly/Mare. The daughter of Captain Al is now at stud where she could turn into a valuable broodmare.
It came as no surprise that Mike de Kock-trained Mustaaqeem was named Champion Two-Year-Old Colt. The full brother to Rafeef only ran twice but won both in a canter, including the Grade 1 SA Nursery over 1160m at Turffontein.
De Kock also received a Special Achievement Award after reaching his 3,000th winner as trainer. That came when Janoobi won the Grade 2 Betting World Gauteng Guineas over 1600m at Turffontein.
Two sires dominated the season and they were Silvano and Dynasty. It came as no surprise that German-bred Silvano, who stands at Maine Chance Farms, was named Champion Stallion. Among his winners was Vodacom Durban July champion Marinaresco. Dynasty also churned out winners and he was named Outstanding Stallion.
Anthony Delpech was named Champion Jockey for the season while Lyle Hewitson had no opposition in the hunt for Champion Apprentice.
While the majority most of awards are based on graded races, and in particular Grade 1 races, the winner of the stayers’ category was left to the discretion of the panel. The only Grade 1 race that covers the distance is the SA Derby which was won by Al Sahem, another son of Silvano, but Hermoso Mundo won three stayers races, the Gold Challenge, Gold Vase and Gold Cup and Weiho Marwing’s charge was named Champion Stayer.
The voting panel comprised of Andrew Harrison, Matthew Lips, Jason Dedekind, Roger Smith, Michael Clower and RA chairman Larry Wainstein as non-voting chairperson.
Jack Milner www.tabnews.co.za