So much for the weight, the draw, and taking on open company for the first time! Reigning Horse of the Year Summer Pudding made light of all of these factors as she powered home in the Gr 1 World Sports Betting Gauteng Summer Cup over 2000m at Turffontein today. Running Brave was a gallant second ahead of the running-on Tree Tumbo and Dance Class, by Mark Anthony. 


The winner’s stablemate, Riverstown, tacked across from wide out to lead early from Crown Towers, Zillzaal, Tristful and Running Brave. Divine Odyssey and Seven Patriots were next best as Summer Pudding, breaking from gate 18, was eased into midfield by jockey Warren Kennedy, turning for home alongside Tierra del Fuego.


Riverstown was under pressure soon after entering the home straight as Crown Towers made an early move along with Running Brave. Kennedy got to work on Summer Pudding as it became clear that nothing else was really running on from behind.


Running Brave mastered Crown Towers about 300m out and took a clear lead but the famous Mauritzfontein silks of Summer Pudding were bearing down ominously on her. The champion forged into the lead inside the last furlong and drew off for a convincing 2,50-length win. Running Brave, in turn was nearly five lengths clear of Tree Tumbo who edged out Dance Class for third place.


Summer Pudding is now unbeaten in nine career starts but, having previously been confined to taking on her own sex, this will go down as the performance that really seals her status. With 59kg on her back, and taking on open company for the first time, she was conceding weight to the majority of the field, many of them battle-hardened campaigners in this sort of company. This was a breath-taking performance and it’s a pity that, with the lockdown in effect, her performance could not be witnessed by a proper crowd – wildly popular, there is no doubt that she would have brought the roof down. Trainer Paul Peter has done a tremendous job of keeping her at the top of her game and she keeps rising to every new challenge thrown her way.


Running Brave seems to get better with age and ran the race of her life here. She emerged with plenty of credit and her connections should be delighted with this performance. Tree Tumbo and Dance Class were not disgraced either, but both were well beaten in the minor placings.


Summer Pudding (SAF) is a 4-y-o filly by Silvano (GER) out of Cherry On The Cake (SAF) by Strike Smartly (CAN). She is owned by Mauritzfontein (Pty) Ltd (Nom: Mrs J B Jell) and was bred by Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfontein



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