Jet Dark joined the ranks of Jet Master, Winter Solstice, Pocket Power and Legal Eagle as 21st century consecutive winners of the Gr1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate at Kenilworth on Saturday.

The handsome son of Trippi stormed home under Smanga Khumalo to earn a golden ticket into the US$2 million FanDuel Gr1 Breeders’ Cup Mile through the Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series.

Now a three-time Gr1 winner, all achieved at weight-for-age, the lightly campaigned Trippi colt slammed a high-class field at a sunny Kenilworth on Saturday in scintillating style when he charged through on the outside of July winner Kommetdieding.

The field was strung out early as the beautiful grey KZN visitor After The Rain led Pomp And Power and Seeking The Stars, in what was two separate races early on.

Coming for home Jet Dark had plenty of ground to make up, but a patient Khumalo was biding his time and the son of Trippi took off as Kommetdieding started unleashing his own booming effort.

In a thrilling rush to the line, Jet Dark went on strongly to score a largely facile win by 2,25 lengths in a time of 96,56 secs.

Kommetdieding (4-1) ran a cracking Met prep by staying on strongly over a trip short of his best a neck in front of Rainbow Bridge (3-1) and the game as gold, Seeking The Stars (10-1).

Jet Dark was allowed to run relatively free by the betting public, starting at 10-1 after a relatively ordinary season opener in the Green Point Stakes last month.

Part-owner Nic Jonsson said that the 2021 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate vistory was great but that nobody was present on course.

He also slammed the ‘one-dimensional and narrow minded form studiers who are doing the public a disservice’.

“Justin brings his horses back with a plan. Jet Dark is a big strong horse. Anybody who managed to get the 7-1, well done to them. This is a serious horse,” he said.

Trainer Justin Snaith, who is quite used to winning big races and had won both features on the afternoon up to this point, expressed the hope that the cameras weren’t focussed on him as he screamed and jumped up and down.

“All of ours really looked in trouble – but Jet Dark was firing under Smanga down the inside. It’s a pleasure to have had him on such a beautiful animal. Nic Jonsson is an unbelievable patron. Tommy Crowe is not far behind – he is very clever to have gotten involved. Congrats to Drakenstein for breeding such a champion,” added Justin.

Khumalo was thrilled to have gotten the opportunity to ride a horse that he had won the Gr1 Champions Cup on at the end of last season. He rode the perfectly patient race on the big horse.

A R200 000 buy from the 2019 Emperors Palace National Yearling Sale, Jet Dark is by Drakenstein Stud’s longstanding champion producer Trippi (End Sweep) and was bred by the champion farm out of the one-time winning Jet Master mare Night Jet, a half-sister to Thukela Handicap winner Brown Penny and Gr1 Mercury Sprint runner-up Night Trip (Trippi).

Jet Dark has now won 6 races with 3 places from 11 starts and took his stakes bank to R2 081 600.

He is yet to run over the 2000m and there was no indication whether he would run in the WSB Cape Town Met in three weeks’ time.


courtesy of