Mauritzfontein suffered a sad loss recently with the passing of their wonderful broodmare Carolina Cherry. She was one of a handful of classic winning racemares, who proved, if anything, even more successful at stud than they were on the racetrack!
Bred and owned by Mauritzfontein, Carolina Cherry was one of two major winners to emerge from the third crop of her champion sire Fort Wood, with the other being subsequent Horse Of The Year Celtic Grove. (Remarkably this crop of foals produced at least 4 top class broodmares, with the others being Derry Wood (dam of Alderry and Royal Vintage), Mabola Plum (dam of 4 stakes horses) and Requista (dam of G1 winner Captain America)).
The future classic winner was produced by winning Home Guard mare Maid Of Castile, who also produced Carolina Cherry’s four time winning own sister Wild Olive –dam of G1 Golden Horse Sprint runner up Wild Type and second dam of current useful performer Louisiana.
Maid Of Castile’s third dam was the great mare Fleur-ancestress of such G1 winners/champions as Classic Flag, Lady Windermere, Broadway Flyer and National Spirit.
Carolina Cherry won first time out over 1000m as a two-year-old, but really came into her own as a three-year-old. The Mike De Kock trained filly won three times, with her biggest victory coming in the G2 Gold Circle Oaks, where her victims included G2 SA Oaks winner Idle Fancy. She also finished second (to Velvet Green) in the G1 Garden Province Stakes and second (to Equus Champion Hoeberg) in the Woolavington Stakes.
Carolina Cherry, who won from 1000-2400m, went on to finish second to Fading Light in the G1 Spring Challenge, and retired to stud having won or placed in 14 of 20 outings.
She did not enjoy the best of luck at stud, and left behind just five foals. However, her four winning foals included none other than high class fillies Cherry On The Top and Cherry On The Cake.
Cherry On The Top (a daughter of Wilgerbosdrift’s ill-fated sire Tiger Ridge) made history when joining Horse Of The Year Igugu as a winner of South Africa’s Triple Tiara. Trained by Ormond Ferraris, the classy filly reeled off wins in the G2 Gauteng Fillies Guineas (by 2.25 lengths), the G1 SA Fillies Classic (by 5.25 lengths) and (then) G1 SA Oaks (by 1.25 length), each time accounting for the classy Do You Remember (who would later finish third in the G1 Vodacom Durban July).
Cherry On The Top was later named Equus Champion 3YO Filly of 2013, and eventually retired to stud having won or placed in 14 of 19 outings.
Her two-year-older half-sister Cherry On The Cake (by Strike Smartly) was also a high class racemare, whose victories included the G3 Jacaranda Handicap.
No doubt more will be heard of Carolina Cherry’s descendants in the years to come!