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Slipper Contender’s South African Connections

Promising two-year-old Muntaseera, who lines up in Saturday’s G1 Longines Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill this weekend, is a filly with strong South African connections.

A daughter of Yarraman Park’s leading sire I Am Invincible (she is one of 11 Australian 2YO winners for I Am Invincible this season thus far, Muntaseera is owned by her breeder Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum, who has enjoyed so much success in South Africa.

(Notable South African runners raced by the sheikh include July winning champions Bold Silvano and Igugu, SA Derby victor Al Sahem, and this season’s G1 Gauteng Chris Gerber Summer Cup winner Zillzaal).

Other notable gallopers to have worn the famous blue and yellow silks is former champion Musir –a full-brother to Muntaseera’s unraced dam Moosirra (Redoute’s Choice –Dizzy De Lago).

Trained by Mike de Kock, Musir was a superb athlete, who competed successfully all over the world. The bay made just three starts in South Africa, with Musir winning twice including the 2009 G1 Golden Horseshoe, where he accounted for the likes of G1 winning sprinter August Rush as well as subsequent Singapore champion Lizarre.

South Africa’s Champion 2YO Colt of 2008-2009, and UAE’s Champion 3YO Miler the following year, Musir won eight times from 1000-1900m, while winning in all of Dubai, South Africa and Turkey.

The bay won six pattern races, with Musir’s victories including the 2009 G1 Golden Horseshoe, 2010 G2 UAE Derby, G3 UAE 2000 Guineas, and the 2011 G2 Topkapi Trophy.

Sold to Coolmore Stud, Musir proved infertile and he briefly returned to the track before retiring permanently.

Moosirra is also a half-sister to two other South African graded stakes winners, including Heversham Park’s G3 Tommy Hotspur Handicap winning sire Moofeed (by Duke Of Marmalade) and G2 Post Merchants hero Merhee (by Elusive Quality).

To date, Muntaseera, beaten just over two lengths when fifth in the G1 Blue Diamond Stakes has won once in five starts, and was second last time out in the G3 The Thoroughbred Breeders Stakes (1200m) at Flemington. The blue-blooded filly gets the services of Michael Dee for Saturday’s $3.5 million 2yo contest.