Turffontein Standside hosts the Grade 2 Peermont Emperor’s Palace Charity Mile and the progressive Candice Dawson-trained Approach Control could cause an upset.
Last time out he was well beaten by the favourite Zillzaal over this course and distance. The latter, who won easing up, beat him by four lengths. However, Approach Control clearly did not enjoy blinkers and was throwing his head around at one stage. The blinkers have been taken off and he is 4,5kg better off with Zillzaal. The form of his previous start looks better. In that race over 1400m he beat the like of Charity Mile contenders Divine Odyssey,
Infamous Fox, Flying Winger and Pilou and on paper should either beat them again or there should be nothing in it, so he looks good value at long odds. Lastly, he is a long-striding sort who will relish the long straight of the Standside track and he has always struck as a scopey sort who would come into his own as a four-year-old. On the downside he is 1,5kg under sufferance, half-a-kilogram due to his merit rating and 1kg due to S’Manga Khumalo riding 1kg overweight. However, Khumalo is not a twice champion jockey for nothing and he is riding at the top of his game. The other downside is his tricky draw of ten out of 16, so Khumalo will need to be at his best and also have some luck to find necessary cover.
Zillzaal has improved with gelding and went through with his run last time, something he had not been doing last season. Therefore, he could be well handicapped as he is probably yet to show his best. However, the Gauteng Summer Cup is his main aim, so he might not be quite at his peak.
Infamous Fox seems to prefer tighter tracks. He has a good draw, which should enable MJ Byleveld to find cover. However, he will need to follow a forward moving horse in the straight so his fine turn of foot can be used to maximum effect.
In The Dance has as good a turn of foot as her half-brother Capetown Noir and is still relatively unexposed, so she will be dangerous running with just 53kg on her back. However, Sean Tarry did say he would have liked another run under the belt before tackling this tough mile race.
Marchingontogether, who finished third in the SA Derby, prefers further and his chief target is the Summer Cup. However, he has plenty of class and has improved with gelding. He won his seasonal reappearance over the too sharp 1400m, so there is no reason why he should not make an impact here.
The like of Camphoratus, Cascapedia, Barahin and Divine Odyssey have the ability to go close but this looks likely to be a build up run for the Summer Cup. Tilbury Fort has a harder task at the weights than he did when running a close second first up last year and the talented Zouaves has a wide draw over a trip which stretches him.
In the Grade 3 Graham Beck Stakes over 1400m Putontheredlight has scope and as a long-striding sort will relish this course and distance. He is well drawn and should also get the good pace he will appreciate with a lot of stablemates under the same ownership taking part. Riverstown is well regarded and has been working well at home. His last run can be ignored as he bumped his head in the stalls and it was not his run. Eden Roc has proven class and has a fine turn of foot so should be involved although he does not have as much scope as Putontheredlight. Frosted Gold and Tallin cannot be ignored for the exotics.
In the Grade 3 HSH Princess Charlene Starling Stakes Cockney Pride will relish the course and distance as one with a strong, sustained finish. She has one run under the belt which will give her an advantage over Mill Queen, who is drawn in pole and has always struck as one whose class would blossom the older she got. Sidonie went too hard last time but was still not disgraced against the classy older horse Vistula, so she could be dangerous under a more conservative ride from a good draw and Strydom up is an obvious bonus.
The Emperors Palace Ready To Run Cup is as competitive as ever but Gaian Glory looks to have the class to take it. Enjoy The View should have come on from his effort last week and has some class. Spiritofthegroove should run on from a wide draw. Seemyvision might make a bold bid from the front but has a stamina doubt and Bohica can’t be ignored.
The Grade 3 Yellowwood Handicapo could be fought out by two classy well drawn horses, Queen Supreme and Roy’s Riviera.
Paul Peter has a strong hand in the Listed Golden Loom and two of this trio, Operetta and Rebel’s Champ have favourable high draws. Prince Of Kahal is in fine form and also has a high draw.
By David Thiselton