Met hopes for Cirillo
Author: David Thistleton
Sean Tarry is still undecided whether Celtic Sea will have another tilt at the Grade 1 Majorca Stakes on Cape Town Met day or take on the boys in the Gr1 Cape Flying Championship.
Meanwhile, Cirillo is on track for the Met and Tarry is lining up his troops for the Johannesburg Autumn season.
Tarry said, “I will nominate Celtic Sea for both races and then have a look at the opposition and the draws before deciding.”
The twice Equus award-winning Captain Al mare has won two Grade 1s over 1200m in her career and one over 1600m.
However, in her last start she ran over 1000m for the first time in the Grade 2 Southern Cross Stakes and she gave the Cape’s best sprinting filly, and the race’s defending champion, Run Fox Run 1kg and a length beating. It was her first start of the season which gave the victory even more merit.
If she runs in the Majorca she will face the Cape’s best female miler Clouds Unfold on 1kg worse terms than in a handicap. However, Clouds Unfold did beat her by 0,30 lengths in this weight for age event last season. She might also be up against the Equus Horse Of The Year Summer Pudding in The Majorca if the connections decide to avoid the Met.
If Celtic Sea runs in the Cape Flying, also a weight for age event, she will receive a 2,5kg female allowance. The 126 merit-rated filly will thus face 128 rated Kasimir on 1,5kg better terms than she would in a handicap and she would be 3kg well in with the defending champion and Equus Champion Sprinter Russet Air and she will be 2kg well in with Run Fox Run.
The first entries for both races are on January 6.
Cirillo has been doing “very well” and is quoted at 20/1 for The Met. This five-year-old has consistently proved to be just behind the best and has achieved six Grade 1 places from 1600m to 1800m.
However, Tarry pointed that Cirillo is one of the few older stalwarts in the country who was still an entire.
Tarry said he would like to think Cirillo had a future at stud and added, “There is a lot to be said for an honest, solid and sound horse. Such types are worth their weight in gold at stud. Our breeders are always looking overseas to improve our bloodlines but they often overlook what we have locally.”
Tarry is well aware that winning a Gr1 is of paramount importance as far as support at stud goes but he would be able to point to the like of Skitt Skizzle as an ordinary performer on the track who has become a decent stallion. This Tarry-trained son of Jet Master won his first start by ten lengths but was never able to fulfill his potential because as an entire he just became too big and he ended his career without a black type win. However, at stud his first crop consisting of a handful of foals from moderate mares included the like of Tierra Del Fuego, Cordillera and River Jordan.
Cirillo will continue a Tarry legacy if he does go to stud. His sire Pomodoro gave Tarry his first Vodacom Durban July victory and Pomodoro’s dam Golden Apple, bred by Sean’s brother Mark, provided him with his first Graded winner.
So, it is no surprise that one of Tarry’s best three-year-olds, the Gimmethegreenlight gelding Paisley Park, is from the family of Pomodoro. Paisley Park’s second dam is a half-sister to the dam of Golden Apple.
Paisley Park’s debut win provided one of the best form maidens of the season on the Highveld and he followed up by winning the Listed Secretariat Stakes over 1400m despite still being green. He beat the promising Copper Mountain in the latter race by half-a-length, although he was receiving 4.5kg.
Tarry said, “He was immature as a youngster and has scope. I can’t get too excited yet but he is on the up and is one of the horses on my shortlist for the Autumn classics.”
Others on the shortlist are Eagle Alley, Silver Tycoon and Flying Carpet.
Eagle Alley also unbeaten in two starts, is by Silvano out of a full-sister to the legendary four-times Ascot Gold Cup winner Yeats so has a Derby pedigree. Tarry said, “He has done well over less ground to date and has a bright future. If the SA Derby does become a target he will have a reliable pedigree for it.”
Silver Tycoon, by Silvano out of the Grade 1-winning Jet Master mare Soft Landing, was beaten 10,25 lengths into second on debut over 1400m by the ultra promising Reunion but followed up with a 6,25 length win over 1400m.
Tarry said, “He had strengthened up a bit and was very impressive.”
Flying Carpet finished a close third in the Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup as a maiden but then failed in the Dingaans. He then came out and won his maiden impressively this week over 1400m. Tarry confirmed about the 103 rated Judpot colt, “He ran below par in the Dingaans.”
Chimichuri Run, Eden Roc and Warrior’s Rest will be having Johannesburg and KZN campaigns.
The former pair, by Trippi and Var respectively, are both still entries and Tarry also has stud careers in mind for them.