• Crawford Racing

Surjay Wins the Inaugural Bantry Bay Stakes


[Original article https://www.sportingpost.co.za/horse-racing/kommet-catches-eye-in-bantry-bay-return-run/]


Confirming his status as something of a Kenilworth 1200m course specialist, the improving 4yo Surjay produced another solid effort to beat a high-quality field in the inaugural R150 000 The Bantry Bay Stakes at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday.



[Images by Bay Media]


A brand new non black-type race on the Cape summer calendar, the Banty Bay Stakes is part of the streamlining of the local speed programme, with the Southeaster Sprint moving to October, and the stakes boosted R450 000 Cape Merchants now being run in December to complete a sensible path for the speedsters into the Gr1 Cape Flying Championship at the end of January.


Ridden by Kabelo Matsunyane, who was subbing for the suspended Louis Mxothwa, Surjay (6-1) turned a quiet day around for Philippi trainer Brett Crawford in 69,06 seconds when he finished with a sustained run to beat a low-flying Kommetdieding (33-10) by a diminishing 0,30 lengths. The consistent Trip Of Fortune (4-1) was a further 0,75 lengths back in third with Bereave (33-1) boosting the quartet in fourth.


Racing in the familiar blue and shocking pink silks of leading owner Suzette Viljoen and bred by the late Dr Jim Antrobus, the winner is a son of SA General Sires List leader Vercingetorix (Silvano) out of the twice-winning Badger Land mare, Something Of Value.

An Equus Champion, and a winner of the Gr1 Jebel Hatta at Meydan, the ever-popular Vercingetorix has 12 lots on offer at this month’s November Two Year Old Sale.






Surjay has now won 4 races with 7 places from 13 stars for stakes of R234 975. The run of the race was undoubtedly that of the 2022 WSB Cape Met champion Kommetdieding, who was having his first start in the 15 weeks since his titanic duel with Jet Dark in the HKJC World Pools Gr1 Champions Cup at the end of last season. The 5yo son of Elusive Fort caught the eye and looks set for a big season. The intention is that he will be syndicated for stud.


Watch the race here: