Unheralded Code Rock wins the 50th Castle Tankard

Ridden by Francois Herholdt, Code Rock on Saturday did the unexpected coming out in front of Borrowdale Race Course favourite Winter’s Night with Earl of Surrey and Captain’s Tiger well behind in a race that attracted  a strong field of 13.
That Code Rock won the Grade One event, the biggest horseracing contest in Zimbabwe was not expected as bookmakers were rooting for House of Wax which was coming from the Geoff Woodruff yard in South Africa and the usual Borrowdale race course favourites Winter’s Night and Captain Tiger.
But the bookmakers were made to revisit the history books ofsuch top horse racing events that has shown that the form book does not count as Herholdt guided Code Rock to a superb finish with their favourite House of Wax falling by the wayside.
House of Wax comes from the same Geoff Woodruff stable in South Africa and Woodruff himself will be disappointed after winning the title with Grisham in 2011 that House of Wax did not even finish in the placings.
But a soft speaking Alyson Wright had warned punters on the day of the final acceptances that they should not take Code Rock lightly as the horse had improved greatly especially in longer races like the 2000 metres.
What has made Wright’s win event the sweeter is the fact that she contributed only two horses in the field Code Rock and Whoole Kaboodle while her rivals Lisa Harris had five and Kirk Swanson four.
The win has improved Code Rock’s overall performance record to five wins and eight placings in 20 races so far.
The other horses that took part in the race are Eight Street, Alula Borealis, Gracie Jones, Got Personality, Briefcase Bill, Boost My Ego and Pressure which led the field at the home stretch but could not maintain the rhythm.
But punters and entertainment goers were left complaining on the exorbitant price of beer which was at a premium at $1. 50 for a can of local lager which is going for less than a $1 in supermarkets and a $1 in most places in town and in suburbs.
Questions were being raised as to why if the Castle Tankard which was celebrating its 50th anniversary would have beers costing that much with many saying if they had know earlier they would not even have attended the event at all as they expected food and beer to be cheaper for such a family outing as has been in the past.
In fact, the attendance was not the usual Castle Tankard crowd with less people this year and many of those in attendance vowed that they would not attend the event next year as they expected a promotional event to have reasonable prices.
Speaking to some, one could easily notice the disappointment on their faces as they sat on the stands with their hands on their cheeks while contemplating what to do next.
Lucky, though, the car draws kept some of them at Borrowdale Race Course when others were leaving for probably cheaper drinking places in town.