Cersei, not far back in her barrier trial ‘won’ emphatically by James Peter, came in for a ton of market support on debut and it was a coup nearly landed as she finished a length off the winner.
Kom Naidoo’s filly takes on winners in the opening leg of the Pick 6 on Workers Day and with a solid race under her girth could be the filly to beat in spite of taking on winners.
Best of the winners could be Mike Miller’s charge Ardenne who has been priced up as joint 33-10 favourite with the selection in the ante-post market.
Cersei is in receipt of a handy 3kg from Ardenne, but carries the same weight as Ardenne’s stable companion Centre Stage who was much improved when tried in blinkers. She has drawn well and could pose the biggest threat to Cersei
On a difficult programme, Emerald Band could help fill the wallet in preparation for the rest of the card when he lines up in the first. Dean Kannemeyer’s runner was a close-up second in a strong juvenile stakes race on Sun Met day and although he has been rested since, he looks more than just useful at this stage of his career.
But he will not have things all of his one way. Ninotto raced very green when a beaten favourite on debut and is a smart looking colt form a very much in form Dennis Drier yard. He looks the most likely threat.
The Durban View Restaurant Handicap is the main course on the day’s menu but again punters are faced with a difficult choice. Runaway Gal heads the ante-post betting but 5-2 looks relatively skinny odds given the opposition. She was not too far back in feature company last start in spite of fading over the last furlong. However, she does seem better on the poly and can go close here. Sweet Mary Lou was relatively friendless in the market in the last race on Sunday but was not far back in a strong field where she was also out at the weights at her previous start. Sean Tarry’s filly looks to be coming to hand slowly and cannot be overlooked lightly. Of the balance, Classic Guard is lightly raced but took to the poly last run but took a hefty penalty for her efforts while Heart Of A Legend won well and had her consistency rewarded when winning recently and from a good draw should be right there again. Not one to leave out of any calculations.
By Andrew Harrison