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CELESTIAL LOVE bags Gr2 Camellia Stakes



Daughters of What A Winter dominated the finish to Saturday’s G2 4Racing Camellia Stakes (1160m) at Turffontein, with three-year-old Celestial Love beating her year older paternal half-sister Sarah into second place.

A winner of her last three races in a row Celestial Love came into Saturday’s sprint for fillies and mares off a three and a three-quarter length win in the G3 World Sports Betting Man O’ War Sprint, and looked a big runner in Saturday’s feature.

Singforafa, Sarah and Tropic Sun were all quickly away as the field jumped for the Camellia Stakes on Saturday, with that trio going up to make the running early.


While Singforafa and Tropic Sun dropped away in the closing stages, the Paul Peter trained Sarah looked poised to cause a surprise, before Gavin Lerena bought Celestial Love with a strong late run down the inside of the track.

The Johan Janse Van Vuuren trained Celestial Love bounded clear in a matter of strides and drew off to post a convincing three length win at the expense of her paternal half-sister Sarah. The latter was game in second, and finished a length clear of favourite Sweet Future, who was attempting to provide jockey S’Manga Khumalo and trainers Michael and Adam Azzie with a quick feature race double.

Now a winner of five of eight starts (she is yet to finish out of the first two), the Hemel ‘N Aarde bred Celestial Love claimed her biggest success to date in a time of 66.13 seconds.

She was a second feature race winner in two days for her four time G1 winning sire What A Winter, whose son Whatever Next had captured Friday’s Listed East Cape Nursery in smart style.

Celestial Love, who was knocked down to Vermaak Equine for R120 000 when sold off the 2019 KZN Yearling Sale, is out of the Lecture mare Leylani –a dual winning half-sister to G3 Lonsdale Stirrup Cup winner and G1 Gold Cup runner up Balance Sheet.

- TSA News

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