RAINBOW Bridge was exposed to the public for the first time just three weeks ago when he beat a small field of Maidens over 1200m, going away.
Stepped up straight into the Gr3 Highlands Stud Winter Guineas over 1600m at Kenilworth on Saturday, Rainbow Bridge proved himself to be a racehorse of rare ability. Justifying betting support from 16s into 8-1, he romped home from last on the bend to score a breathtaking win for owner Chris Gerber, trainer Eric Sands and jockey Richard Fourie.
In the post-race interview, Fourie suggested that Rainbow Bridge was cantering when his rivals came off the bit. They turned for home with the entire field ahead of them, switched wide, pulled alongside them with 250m to run and galloped clear to win by 1.25-lengths from Rocket Countdown and Love Happens.
“I didn’t want to let him go too soon, but he did it effortlessly. He put himself in a good position, like good horses do. He’s a top horse,” Fourie confirmed.
Sands, not known for going into a Graded feature from the Maidens, commented: “That’s not my style, but one doesn’t get a horse like this too often. And even when you do, you have to think twice before doing it.
“Rainbow Bridge was injured as a young horse and we sent him to the farm and gave him the time to recover. He’s been showing the ability to step up and I phoned Chris Gerber last week and put Richard on the phone to him. Chris said, ‘I’ll take my chances!’ Thanks to him for the support. I also trained Rainbow Bridge’s mother, Halfway to Heaven for Gavin Walker, who sold the mare on.”
Rainbow Bridge was bred by the Mauritzfontein/Wilgerbosdrit partnership. He’s by Mauritzfontein’s Kingmambo stallion Ideal World, who keeps giving consistently.
Photos by Wayne Marks.