Darley’s top class shuttle stallion Exceed And Excel, who was bred and sold by Kia Ora Stud, was in the news at Turffontein on Saturday when his Australian bred daughter Nafaayes won the G2 World Sports Betting Ipi Tombe Challenge for trainer Mike de Kock, jockey Warren Kennedy and owned Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Despite facing such top class opponents as G1 Jonsson Workwear Garden Province Stakes winner Redberry Lane, G2 Daisy Fillies Guineas victress Fiorella and G3 Yellowwood Handicap winner Sylvan On Fire, Nafaayes was sent out a 71-20 favourite off the strength of her good last run when second in the G3 HSH Princess Charlene Starling Stakes.
The Ipi Tombe Challenge was delayed after Sylvan On Fire pulled a shoe, but the field got off to a good break when the nine horse field was eventually dispatched from the 1600m marker.
As is her want, Redberry Lane went out to make the running and led early on from the likes of Nafaayes, and Sylvan On Fire, with Fiorella racing keenly early on.
The front runner faded out quickly at the top of the straight, and the favourite hit the front and kept galloping resolutely to claim the Ipi Tombe Challenge by 2.8 lengths from a game Al Danza. The latter tried in vain to get on terms with Nafaayes but the latter kept finding more to post a convincing success over her two-year-older rival.
Sylvan On Fire was a well beaten third –more than four lengths off the winner, with Fiorella back in fourth. Redberry Lane finished fifth after fading out of contention.
Nafaayes claimed her third win (and first graded victory) in a time of 97.41.
Bred by Kia Ora Stud (who also bred South African Horse of The Year Igugu), Nafaayes is the 151st stakes winner for her sire, who was Australia’s Champion Sire of 2012-2013. The filly, a $350 000 buy from the 2017 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale, was produced by Dehere mare Decelerator, whose five wins included the G3 Debutante Stakes.
Kia Ora Stud will offer the More Than Ready half-brother at January’s Magic Millions Yearling Sale on the Gold Coast as Lot 508 – Pedigree.
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