Future Pearl is being eased well before the line by Richard Fourie in Saturday’s Gr 3 DSTV Gold Vase (Candiese Lenferna Photography)
The Sean Tarry-trained Drakenstein homebred son of Futura, Future Pearl, stands on the cusp of landing what became known as the “Stayers’ Triple Crown” in 2017.
On Saturday at Hollywoodbets Greyville he relished the soft going once more and romped home in the Gr 3 DSTV Gold Vase over 2400m, just like he had done in the Gr 3 WSB Gold Bowl over 3200m at Turffontein Standside.
If the big three-year-old gelding wins the country’s premier staying event, the Gr 3 Gold Cup on the last weekend of the season over 3200m at Hollywoodbets Greyville, he will have emulated Hermoso Mundo, who won all three of the “Gold” staying events in 2017.
The great Australian writer Les Carlyon once said, “This is what makes racing interesting – horses and people. These are the only things in racing worth writing about. The rest is dross.”
The Weiho Marwing-trained Hermoso Mundo’s part-owner Sean Singleton provides a good example.
It is worth revisiting the Stayer’s triple crown feat of the Mauritzfontein Stud-bred Ideal World gelding, because it is a lovely story made more entertaining by Sean’s passion for the sport.
Read all about it below.
Hermoso Mundo “jou Woer Woer Woer Masjien”
Weiho Marwing has established a reputation as a phenomenal trainer of stayers and his charge Hermoso Mundo looked a potential winner when passing the stand for the first time in the Grade 3 SABC Gold Vase over 3000m on Durban July day 2017 as he was already relaxed in a perfect position.
However, in the end the connections had to go through the agony of an objection inquiry before landing the result they had dreamed about for weeks.
The most relieved man on course was part-owner Sean Singleton, who then entertained the crowd to his traditional victory war cry.
Over in Germany the race had stopped an important match on the tournament tennis circuit.
Sean’s war cry is well known to all of his racing friends, but this was the first time he had performed it outside the confines of his home or a racecourse suite.
He explained the Afrikaans sequence of words, which are shouted at full volume while imitating a jockey riding a horse, were invented by him chiefly as an adrenalin reliever and had no real meaning.
“Jou lekker ding, jou lollipop, jou opgeswelde hoender haan, jou woer woer woer masjien!”, echoed across the racecourse and it was clear afterwards Sean had finally recovered his composure and breath.”
“Hermoso Mundo you lekker ding” – Sean Singleton with the Gold Vase.
Earlier, while waiting for the objection verdict, Sean’s girlfriend Chantal as well as his good friend Darryl Maree had become concerned. The latter poured water down his throat and Chantal ordered him to breathe deeply.
On this occasion he really did need to get rid of the adrenalin.
He said, “I didn’t really have a big bet, but we just really care about this horse and it was all about the excitement of having a winner on July day.”
Later, Sean was speaking to part-owner Neil Patrick Smith on the phone.
“He was crying like a baby,” admitted Sean. “He then said, hang on, I have to get back to my tennis match!”
Neil is an outstanding tennis player and his important tournament match on Saturday was scheduled to clash with the time of the race. However, it had been agree by all involved, including the umpire, they would call a halt at race time and watch the live transmission from Greyville on a computer screen at the back of the court. The objection caused a further delay to the match as Neil could not leave the result hanging in the air.
Sean is a passionate fan of the sport of kings from many angles and the Pick 6 is one of his favourite bets. He did banker his horse in the Pick 6 and then landed a percentage of the healthy R253,143.70 dividend when his other banker Al Mariachi arrived in the last leg.
The connections of the Mauritzfontain Stud-bred Hermoso Mundo, who also include NC Smith, GD Cahn, G Morris and W Volschenk, were now dreaming of Gold Cup victory and the completion of a historic hattrick.
Sean said, “He won the Gold Bowl at Turffontein, which used to be a Grade 1, and he won the Gold Vase, which used to be a Grade 2. The Gold Cup used to be a Grade 1 and I don’t think any horse has ever won all three of these races in the same season.”
On Saturday Karl Zechner had the long-striding four-year-old gelding by Ideal World relaxed in a perfect position on the rail as they passed the winning post for the first time.
Hermoso Mundo had been shuffled back to about sixth from the back by the halfway mark. However, he had travelled beautifully throughout and crept closer when the field concertina-ed coming up the hill towards the straight.
He was going so well in the straight Zechner was able to force his way through a virtually non-existent gap between Sun On Africa and Helderberg Blue at the 350 m mark.
The rangy bay then got into full stride and began rapidly eating away the lead, which had been established by the Lonsdale Stirrup Cup winner Captain Splendid.
However, the latter then suddenly began hanging away from a right-handed whip and bumped him. Hermoso Mundo had to change legs and regather himself, yet still failed by only a whisker to get up.
In the objection inquiry Zechner pointed out the leader had been “treading water”, while his mount had been finishing strongly and was clearly on his way to victory.
Piere Strydom is a master in all aspects of his profession and countered by pointing out Hermoso Mundo had also moved inward. He added he had also been forced to stop riding in order to straighten his mount. But the stipendiary stewards were not buying it and quickly upheld the decision. They also slapped Strydom with a ten day suspension for failing to ensure he did not cause interference to Hermoso Mundo in the closing stages. .
Weiho Marwing heaped praise on Zechner as well as the owners. He had a glint in his eye when saying it had been a “privilege to win a race … again … on July day.” Of course, he was on the wrong side of one of South African racing’s most infamous ever objections three years ago after Wylie Hall had crossed the line first in the July.
Ideal World’s progeny are stout and continually improve so it looked likely there would be be a few more “woer woer woer” war cries before the end of the progressive Hermoso Mundo’s career.
The Gold Cup
Records were smashed when Hermoso Mundo won the eLan Gold Cup over 3200m at Greyville yesterday as he became the first horse to complete the “Gold” treble and Weiho and Weichong Marwing may well have become the first trainer-jockey brother combination to win the big race.
The crowd were treated to the colourful “woer, woer masjien” victory warcry of part-owner Sean Singleton, while part-owner Neil Patrick Smith, who had travelled all the way from Germany, was overcome with emotion and the other owners NC Smith, GD Cahn, G Morris and W Volschenk also joined in the celebrations.
The long-striding Mauritzfontein Stud-bred four-year-old gelding by Ideal World won the Grade 3 Gold Bowl over 3200m at Turffontein on May 6, the Grade 3 Gold Vase over 3000m on VDJ day and completed the historic treble under a cool ride.
Marwing had him tucked away in the running within striking distance and after a tussle in the closing stages with the five-year-old mare Zante, he stretched out to win by a neck.
The Marwing-trained Let It Rain finished third ahead of Fortissima and Tote favourite Kinaan.