APOLOGIES for the quality of the scans in today’s edition of Turf Talk Time Machine, but if you adjust your bifocals there is much to see and remember in the fine print from this 2000m contest taken from the race card at Newmarket, South Africa, on 31 October 1989. (Scroll down for images).
So, the big race on this day, almost 27 years ago, was the Racecourse Bookmakers’ Handicap, sponsored with R35,000 by real men with long cigars who could lay massive bets but don’t exist anymore. There was a whole ring full of bookies in front of the grandstand those days, and for a race like this there would have been much activity around the ring.
There are any number of well-known, then well-performed horses in this race.
We reported yesterday on a 16-year-old runner in the UK – Number 1 here, Rule By The Sword, was one of the oldest horses to race here in SA in the last few decades. He was 10 this year, raced until 13.
Westridge (2) and South Lake (3) were two of the first runners saddled by young trainer Mike de Kock.
Number four, Raised Status, is ridden by Queensland’s 2016 Champion jockey Jeffrey Lloyd, the evergreen South African.
Stablemate Number 5 is ridden by Felix Coetzee.
Number Nine, For Power, is ridden by apprentice Douglas Whyte for Gary Alexander.
Number 11 is General Assembly, running for the then powerful combination of Nic Claassen and MJ Odendaal.
We go to page 3, as there were 18 runners in this field, and notice Basil Marcus on Number 17, Kharg Island, now trainer Paul Reeves on Number 18, Petasham.
So in one race here, in the glorious late 1980s, you have Lloyd, Coetzee, Strydom and Marcus in a single race, joined by the likes of Rhys van Wyk, Weichong Marwing and several others.
The result: Winner 13 Almanac (Ormond Ferraris/Weichong Marwing), from 8 Chattaronga (Jean Heming/Frikkie Vermaak); 3 South Lake (Mike de Kock/Tobie van Booma); and 5 Hard Asset (Spike Lerena/Felix Coetzee). Distances: 1/2, shd, shd.
Good memories, team!