Consistent Gr1 galloper Legal Eagle was named South African Horse of the Year at the annual Equus awards ceremony in Johannesburg on Tuesday, reports sahracing.com. The Ingrid and Markus Jooste-owned 5YO ran first or second in all five of his outings last season in which he claimed three Gr1 victories - the Queen's Plate (1600m), Horse Chestnut Stakes (1600m) and most recently the Champions Challenge (2000m) at Turffontein. Legal Eagle - who is by Greys Inn, a Gr1-winning son of deceased Champion New Zealand Sire Zabeel - collected a total of three Equus Awards on the night. He was also named Champion Miler and Champion Middle Distance Horse. Bred by Avontuur Thoroughbred Farm, Legal Eagle's imposing record now stands at 7 wins from 12 starts for over R5 million in prize money. Other winners on the night were:
At Kenilworth in South Africa, 4YO mare Smart Call (Ideal World-Good Judgement, by Horse Chestnut) registered the third top-flight victory of her career when scoring a comprehensive 3.5-length win for trainer Alec Laird in the R2.5 million Gr1 J&B Metropolitan Handicap (2000m) for 3YO+, over 4YO entire Legal Eagle (Greys Inn-Young Sensation, by National Emblem) & 5YO entire Captain America (Captain Al-Requista, by Fort Wood). Bred and owned by Mauritzfontein Stud, Smart Call took her record to 7 wins (including the Gr1 Paddock Stakes & Gr1 Woolavington 2000 Stakes) and 6 placings from 16 starts for nearly R3.5 million earnings. Smart Call became the first female to win the Met since Australian-bred champion Igugu took out the race in 2012.
At Kenilworth in South Africa, 4YO mare Smart Call (Ideal World-Good Judgement, by Horse Chestnut) registered the second top-flight victory of her career when scoring by 2-lengths for trainer Alec Laird in the R1 million Gr1 Paddock Stakes (1800m) for 3YO+ f&m, over fellow 4YO mare Inara (Trippi-Mountains of Mist, by Shirley Heights) & 3YO filly Bela-Bela (Dynasty-Mystic Spring, by Royal Academy). Bred and owned by Mauritzfontein Stud, Smart Call took her record to 6 wins (including the Gr1 Woolavington 2000 Stakes) and 6 placings from 15 starts for nearly R2 million earnings.
At Greyville racecourse in South Africa, smart 3YO filly Same Jurisdiction (Mambo in Seattle-Diana de Carlo, by Captain Al) overcame her wide barrier to score by 1-length for trainer Duncan Howell in the R750,000 Gr1 Garden Province Stakes (1600m) for 3YO+ f&m, over fellow 3YO filly Smart Call (Ideal World-Good Judgement, by Horse Chestnut) & 4YO mare Maybe Yes (Tiger Ridge-Fair Enough, by Model Man). This was the second Gr1 victory for Same Jurisdiction who took her record to 5 wins (including the Gr1 Thekwini Stakes) and 3 placings from 9 starts for nearly R1.9 million earnings.
At Greyville in South Africa, 3YO filly Smart Call (Ideal World-Good Judgement, by Horse Chestnut) claimed the first stakes victory of her career when scoring by a neck for trainer Alec Laird in the Gr1 Woolavington 2000 Stakes (2000m) for 3YO fillies, over fellow fillies Pine Princess (Captain Al-Scent of Pine, by Badger Land) & Trophy Wife (Tiger Ridge-My Squeeza, by Goldmark). Smart Call took her record to 3 wins and 5 placings (including the Gr2 Gauteng Fillies Guineas) from 10 starts.