Skip to main content
Unbeaten Lucky Lad will be up against unbeaten Main Defender and top class Sandringham Summit in  the Gr 1 World Pool Moment Of The Day Champion Stakes (Picture: Chase Liebenberg).

Battle between Lucky Lad, Main Defender and Sandringham Summit has punters enthralled

David Mollett (Business Day)
Three highveld-trained two-year-olds are poised to serve up a treat for racing fans when they clash in the R700,000 Grade 1 World Pool Moment Of The Day Champion Stakes over 1600m at Hollywoodbets Greyville on Sunday.
While the World Pool Gold Cup is the topliner at the meeting, it is the battle between Lucky Lad, Main Defender and Sandringham Summit that has punters enthralled. The trio are trained by Sean Tarry, Tony Peter and David Nieuwenhuizen respectively.
Bookmakers have Lucky Lad as the clear favourite at 15-10 and it’s a position the son of Gimmethegreenlight is entitled to after reeling off four consecutive wins. The latest was a five-lengths romp in the Gold Medallion at Scottsville at the beginning of June.
Lucky Lad, bred at Varsfontein Stud, cost R850,000 when bought by Kentucky-based Antony Beck as a yearling. He has recouped that outlay and will add R437,500 to his bankroll if maintaining his unbeaten record on Sunday.
However, Tarry and jockey Richard Fourie will know they’ve got two big hurdles to overcome: two serious rivals in Main Defender and Sandringham Summit as well as a wide draw.
Main Defender also travels to the Durban track unbeaten and the son of Pathfork — bred by Jagessar Limited — showed he can handle the Hollywoodbets Greyville track with victory in the BSA Cup on July day. Craig Zackey retains the ride on the gelding, who is looking a bargain buy at R140,000.
Trainer Tony Peter may have allowed himself a wry smile when the barrier positions were announced. Main Defender is perfectly positioned in gate five whereas Lucky Lad and Sandringham Summit will have to overcome gates 13 and 14.
Sandringham Summit was this column’s selection for the Durban Golden Horseshoe on July day and, turning for home, the colt looked to have about as much chance as the Springboks beating New Zealand after giving them a 10-points start.
Somehow jockey Calvin Habib weaved his way through to collar the well-fancied Gimmeanotherchance in the final strides. That run suggested Sandringham Summit will have no problems with Sunday’s distance of 1,600m.
Compared with Tarry’s operation, David Nieuwenhuizen would be the first to admit his stable hasn’t got the firepower of other yards so it will be thrilling that they’ve unearthed a star like Sandringham Summit. Like Lucky Lad, he was bred at Varsfontein Stud and cost owner Rakesh Singh the tidy sum of R1.7m.
It’s no surprise the colt was expensive at the 2022 National Yearling Sales as the mare Townsend won five races and the youngster’s half-brother, Eden Roc, won six races for popular owner Chris van Niekerk.
When it comes to making a final selection for Friday’s paper, it will be difficult to desert Sandringham Summit. He was a 6-1 chance on July day and is on offer at 15-4 this time.

On the World Pool Gold Cup front, bookmaker Lance Michael reports some support for Keagan De Melo’s mount, Black Thorn, who has shortened into 12.3-1 from 14-1. The five-year-old is one of two runners from the powerful Mike de Kock stable.