Heartbreak Hill and Paul Hart - South African Eventing

Heartbreak Hill aka Harry with Paul Hart aboard
(Photo : Vuma Horse Feed)

1996 - 2012

Saturday evening brought us tragic and devastating news! Our Vuma champ, Heartbreak Hill, broke his leg on the cross country course at Burghley and was euthanased while long time partner and rider, Paul Hart, stayed with him.

For all of us who have given our hearts and souls to horses, there can be no sadder moment and our hearts grieve for Harry and for Paul on this great loss.

Paul and Harry had a phenomenal partnership which saw the son of Rocky Marriage become South African Eventing Champion in 2008.

Out of the mare Boomy Hill, Harry was a typical classic thoroughbred; handsome, striking and elegant, although he was a plain bay. He had a tendency to be quite hot which Paul managed with kindness and trust, and it made for a super cross country and jumping combination but often a tricky dressage test.

Having left South Africa for Europe in 2010 to qualify for and compete at WEG in Kentucky, Harry stayed on in England to campaign in Europe with the express goal of qualifying for the Olympics.

The pair did qualify and were the sole South African eventing representatives at the London Olympics. However, they were thrown a major disappointment when the Court for Arbitration in sport found Alex Peternell to be better qualified to represent South Africa, on the very day that they should have entered Greenwich Park for the run-up week.

Burghley was their consolation competition and a chance to compete at that level for a final time. It is thus particularly devastating that the injury happened there.

To Paul, from the Vuma team, we grieve with you and for you on the loss of a great Champion and hope that the memories of the incredible journey that the two of you shared help to sustain you!

In the words of Khalil Gibran: "When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight."

Harry was a delight and a Champion! He will be sorely missed and fondly remembered!



Sean Tarry and Across The Ice - August Stakes

Sean Tarry and Across The Ice
(Image : Racing South Africa / Phumelela)

And Away They Go...

We were hoping for a Vuma victory this past Saturday and we more than got it, with Sean Tarry once again winning the Grade 3 August Stakes, this time with Across The Ice.

The Western Winter gelding ran out an easy winner, 5.25 lengths clear of the second placed horse, Captain's Secret.

Having won both the August Stakes and then the Emerald Cup last year with The Mouseketeer, the Vuma team is certainly hoping that the yard can do it again!

With Vuma power behind them, we have little doubt that they have every chance.

Congratulations to the Tarry yard and owners Chris van Niekerk and Markus Jooste.

Let's not forget that the Burghley Horse Trials get underway today, Thursday the 30th of August, and we will be holding thumbs for Paul Hart and Harry as they compete over the weekend!

vuma horse feed south africa


For more information contact :
Catherine Hartley : 083 640 1155



South Africa vs India Polo

South Africa vs India
(Photo : Vuma Horsefeed)

"A tricky time of year from a feed management perspective..."

After the recent icy cold spell and snowfalls not seen for many years, it certainly feels as if spring is just around the corner.

Since we are only 9 days from the official start of the spring season, we have lots to look forward to and a busy session ahead.

Foaling season has begun in earnest at the stud farms, pastures and tracks are being readied for summer use and most horses should be losing winter coats.

It is a tricky time of year from a feed management perspective as the green grass has yet to come through, stocks of hay are running low and horses often do not drink enough water when the nights are cold but the days are warmer. It is thus important to make sure that water in stables is always available and where it is still cold at night that the water is freshened up and warmed up if necessary.

From a competition perspective, there is much action on the go both locally and abroad, starting with the BMW International Polo on Sunday at Waterfall Polo Park, Sunninghill, Johannesburg. The second of two test matches against the visiting Indian team, is bound to be very exciting, as the Indians try to level the series after they were beaten 6-11 by the young SA team last weekend at Shongweni.

Saturday sees the running the R200,000 Gr3 August Stakes over 1200m at the Vaal. The race serves as a trial for next month's Emerald Cup, and should prove to be an interesting race and is fairly open as far as selections go. Of course the Vuma team cannot help but have favourites since we know when they are powered by Vuma they have more than a fighting chance!

Last year's winner, The Mousketeer, came out of Vuma trainer Sean Tarry's yard and he saddles the Western Winter gelding Across The Ice this year.

Another Vuma contender is Dom Zaki's Escape Clause, who has shown some decent form over the distance, so we look forward to an exciting race.

Further afield, Vuma Champs Heartbreak Hill and Paul Hart, who lost out on their chance to compete at the London Olympics 2012, will be testing their mettle at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. The competition starts with dressage on Thursday the 30th and Friday the 31st of August before the challenge of captain Mark Phillips' cross country course on Saturday the 1st of September. The Championship will be decided in the final show-jumping phase on Sunday the 2nd of September.

And while still in the UK, we can only be awestruck by the incredible Frankel, who came out to win the Grade 1 Juddmonte International at York Wednesday. To say he is a phenomenon would be an understatement. The Vuma Team salutes this amazing hero and all his connections!



Happy Archer, Anton Marcus and Sean Tarry

Happy Archer - Gold Bracelet (Gr2) - Jockey Anton Marcus and Trainer Sean Tarry
(Photo : Gold Circle)

"And that's a wrap as they say in the movies!"

As the curtain comes down on the 2011/2012 South African Horseracing Season, it has certainly been an exciting finish and right down to the wire for the Jockeys' Championship.

Congratulations to Anton Marcus whose two winners at Kenilworth Tuesday just allowed him to beat young rider Gavin Lerena by one point to secure the National Jockey's Championship for the third successive year. Gavin has been champion apprentice in the past and there is no doubt that he will be back to challenge the older, more experienced Anton Marcus in the future. He only just missed out this time and he had a setback when he was laid off for some time with a broken tibia!

Vuma-powered trainer Sean Tarry has had a phenomenal season to finish second on the Trainers log, behind champion trainer Mike de Kock. Our Congratulations to all the connections of both yards! In every instance the trainers are backed up by a superb team and it is to them that most of the credit is due!

Sean and owner Chris van Niekerk completed the season with a treble on Saturday, with The Hangman winning the Grade 1 Premiers Champion Stakes, Happy Archer winning the Grade 2 Gold Bracelet and Heavy Metal winning the Listed Darley Arabian. A great end to a super season!

The Champion Breeders title has also been hard fought again this year, with some very close moments. However, Vuma founders, Summerhill Stud, managed to pull away from nearest rivals, Klawervlei Stud, to secure their eighth consecutive National Breeders title; this is a record for any stud farm to maintain. It is surely testament to the questioning and challenging mindset at Summerhill that continually reviews their methods and explores ways of doing this differently. Having started out following "modern" farming and feeding methods, one of the turning points for Summerhill was adopting natural bio-farming on their pastures and manufacturing a superior, nutrient dense concentrate in the form of Vuma Horse Feed.

The pundits will tell you that this has resulted in a better horse for the sales ring and the stats will tell you that these horses, on average, run more often and for longer.

Vodacom Durban July runner-up, Smanjemanje, is a case in point. One of only three five-year-olds in the race, this was his 40th run for stakes of over R1.5 Million and he was only beaten half a length by the three-year-old Pomodoro.

So, if you are looking for longevity and staying power, we say start as you mean to go on - with the best!

vuma horse feed south africa


For more information contact :
Catherine Hartley : 083 640 1155



Paul Hart and Heartbreak Hill

Paul Hart and Heartbreak Hill
(Photo : Vuma Feed)

"Paul Hart and Harry will not compete at the Olympics."

It is with very heavy hearts and a sense of overwhelming absurdity that we heard that our Vuma Champion eventers Paul Hart and Heartbreak Hill will now not compete in the three phase eventing, starting on Saturday, at the 2012 London Olympics.

An attempt by Alex Peternell to reverse the decision to have the established team of Paul and Harry represent South Africa, in favour of himself and a newer horse has resulted in SASCOC withdrawing the single entry for a South African rider.

This is particularly disappointing when one looks at the ethics of the Olympics and the fact that, not only do we lose out on showcasing a South African Thoroughbred and SA based rider to the world... we now have no representation at all!

A very sorry state of affairs and the Vuma team's thoughts and best wishes are with Paul and Harry!

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