Triple Crown - The Next Generation.
A Triple Crown winner is pretty special by anyone’s standards. The American Triple Crown, made up of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes has only been won 12 times, starting with Sir Barton in 1919 and culminating with American Pharoah’s triumph in 2015.
The English Triple Crown consists of the 2000 Guineas (1 mile at Newmarket), the Epsom Derby (1 mile 4 furlongs at Epsom Downs) and the St Leger (1 mile 6 furlongs and 132 yards at Doncaster) and has been won fifteen times starting with West Australia in 1853. Nijinsky was the last to achieve the feat in 1970 with very few horses even attempting all three in recent history.
The South African Triple Crown comprises our 1600m Gauteng Guineas (occasionally including the Cape Guineas as an alternate), the 1800m SA Classic and the 2450m SA Derby and has only been won three times – first and perhaps most brilliantly by Horse Chestnut in 1999, followed by Louis The King in 2014 and in 2016 came Abashiri, who made his long-awaited return to the track this past weekend.
With Horse Chestnut picking the celestial grass in the great paddock in the sky and Abashiri being a gelding, Louis The King is the only Triple Crown winner at stud in South Africa. With his unassuming back story, his bargain basement price, his gentleman trainer, his sentimental name, the legion of doubters who said he’d never do it and the triumphant way he did it anyway, Louis shot a bright bolt of colour across our dreary 2014 winter skyline and his story is the stuff dreams are made of.