L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate and FMM

Jet Dark, the only three year-old in the 2021 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate, delivered a knockout blow to accomplished older horses in a 1 600-metre epic run at Kenilworth Race Course on Saturday January 9. Ridden by Grant van Niekerk, on the finishing straight Jet Dark made a charge down the inside and their momentum took the colt past Rainbow Bridge just short of the finishing post. Short-priced favourite Belgarion stayed on from near the back to take third with Do It Again finishing fourth. Described as a “precocious miler”, Jet Dark was bred at Drakenstein Stud.

The organisers of the two-day L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate Racing Festival did a sterling job under trying circumstances. It was the 160th running of South Africa’s premier weight-for-age mile-long race, and is one of the oldest and most prestigious horse races in South Africa. The Festival has always celebrated sporting excellence in the company of great friends with the best the Cape has to offer in food, wines and entertainment.

For 17 years, sponsors L’Ormarins have been passionately drawing people into the racing fold and growing the game with stylishly conceived initiatives. Even though the 2021 meeting was staged behind closed doors, Cape Racing’s Tellytrack live stream platform provided live coverage of the event.

Also on the Kenilworth race card was the Franschhoek Motor Museum Handicap, which was won by Real Gone Kid, who is trained by Brett Crawford and was ridden by Anton Marcus. Despite racegoers not being allowed on course, local prominent racehorse photographer Chase Liebenberg graciously captured the winning moment of our sponsored steed. FMM was still otherwise involved in the occasion providing a total of 24 cars in keeping with the Queen’s Plate traditional colour scheme of blue and white for display at both Kenilworth and at the themed weekend at L’Ormarins, and at the themed weekend at L’Ormarins.

Guests visiting the estate over the two days got to enjoy the continuation of the scattered blue-and-white theme in celebration of the event. Delectable charcuterie platters were prepared for the day visitors, who enjoyed the fine weather, fine machinery and fine food, all in the elegant setting of the L’Ormarins Estate, which offers some of the finest views of the Franschhoek Valley.