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– Written by Mark van Deventer

GREEN WITH ENVY trounced rivals in the SplashOut Cape Derby (Gr1) over 2000m at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth. The Khaya Stables star came from off the pace to record a wide-margin victory over the filly, BEACH BOMB (a dual Gr1 winner), with long-time leader ORIENTAL CHARM staying on for third at 100/1. COASTAL COMMANDER rounded off the Quartet.

The winner is a son of super sire GIMMETHEGREENLIGHT. Interestingly, his dam Miss Coco, is by the breed-shaping Galileo. His influence is present in the stamina possessed by Green With Envy. An achievement made even sweeter for Lady Laidlaw’s Khaya Stables, as they bred the sophomore star as well. He started favourite at 14/10 on the back of a fine score a month ago in the Schweppes Politician Stakes carrying top weight, but even his most ardent fans could not have expected him to hand out such a drubbing to Gr1 field of this stature.

In a race run in the drizzle and overcast conditions, he made up ground so quickly that once pilot Craig Zackey asked him to go, he went from many lengths behind at the top of the straight to being in total command when moving into the final 200m.

“I’m thrilled with his performance. This was a super win by a progressive horse. There was no doubt in my mind about the distance given his breeding,” said an elated Kannemeyer.

Jockey Zackey believes GREEN WITH ENVY is already one of the finest horses he’s ridden – certainly the best over middle distances. He dedicated the triumph to fellow jock, Keagan de Melo (now in Hong Kong), who rode GREEN WITH ENVY to a first start win – instantly labelling  him as a potential star based on that flashy Hollywoodbets Greyville, June ‘23 debut. 

Zackey paid tribute to Kannemeyer as “a master of his trade – it’s just a pleasure riding for this stable and I’ve learned so much here.” 

Second placed BEACH BOMB (by LANCASTER BOMBER) was completely out-finished by GREEN WITH ENVY, yet still ran admirably 2.75 lengths adrift. She has won the World Sports Betting Cape Fillies Guineas, Cartier Paddock Stakes, during a productive summer campaign, and signed off for the season by clocking in second against a high-class colt for whom the sky seems the limit. 

As decisive as the Derby demolition job was, the Gr2 Khaya Stables Diadem Stakes sprint feature was a desperate duel. “We thought he was done; he’s such a gutsy horse,” says Pippa Mickleburgh of Avontuur Stud, after THUNDERSTRUCK fought off persistent challengers on both sides to win the  1200m race. 

Trainer Sean Tarry went into the race full of confidence and that conviction was vindicated – albeit narrowly – as the Richard Fourie ridden, RAFEEF colt who started at 9/10, just staved off three-year-old FUTURE VARIETY. The runner-up, who made a big move on the grand side, fell short by a neck with Diadem defending champ, BEREAVE close up, and COSMIC HIGHWAY also dashing through between horses to be fourth in a blanket finish. The first five finishers were within a length of each other at the wire. 

DOUBLE GRAND SLAM proved much the best in the SplashOut Prix du Cap (Gr3) contested over 1400m, putting daylight between herself and nearest pursuers OCTOBER MORN and long-time leader RASCOVA. She raced full of energy on the turn before making a bold inside rails move to romp home.  

“She switched off, and when I squeezed her she really took off. This was very good; today she ran like she works.” said satisfied jockey, Grant van Niekerk. 

He added, “She was skittish and naughty before, but Justin Snaith worked his magic with her.” The trainer was convinced that she was sufficiently rejuvenated, advising golfing Grand Slam legend and part owner Gary Player to be at the course to lead her in. That assurance was reflected in significant market moves, which saw the Varsfontein Stud bred, daughter of VERCINGETORIX’s odds slashed from 10/1 ante post into 5/1. 

The City of Cape Town Cape of Good Hope Nursery (Gr3) 1200m sprint fell to ONE STRIPE. The ONE WORLD juvenile, ridden by Bernard Fayd’Herbe, had too much sustained pace for the opposition, and once set loose down the inner it was race over. ONE STRIPE was the first of many favourites to oblige on a punishing day for the layers. 

WINDS OF CHANGE, 2nd on debut, chased in vain for the same finishing outcome, while Cape Racing Sales Cape Slipper winner, LITTLE BALLERINA, also made belated progress into 3rd spot – albeit held safe by yet another heavily punted winner.