THE Listed Sea Cottage Stakes for three-year-olds over 1800m at Turffontein is traditionally a race contested by colts and geldings and Mary Slack’s filly Orchid Island was going to be up against it from the word go on Saturday
She showed, however, that she is well above average by giving her male rivals a galloping lesson under Anthony Delpech, who was quickly off the mark this weekend with a few winners after his injury-enforced layoff.
Mathew de Kock commented: “Orchid Island is a granddaughter of Ilha Da Vitoria and she’s a very small filly like the rest of the family, but she can run like them too. In 2015 we won this race with Ertijaal prior to his win in the Cape Derby and last year Mike Azzie won it with Abashiri who went on to the Triple Crown, so it’s a good pointer to ability.”
Orchid Island stamped herself as a classic prospect for the season, with the Gr2 Wilgerbosdrift Fillies Guineas in February her first aim. She’s a daughter of Silvano from Ilha Grande, from Slack’s Wilgerbosdrift Stud.
The stable was also active in Dubai, where Mike kept his tally ticking with Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum’s Baroot (GB), who handled his return to turf remarkably well after a long spell on dirt.
Baroot made his bottom weight count for Pat Cosgrave and galloped on well in a competitive handicap to win by a length.