General Franco is to be given a lengthy rest following his flop when long odds-on at Kenilworth last Saturday but tests and follow-up inspections have so far proved inconclusive.
Justin Snaith said yesterday: “He has pulled up a little bit shin-sore but bar that we cannot find anything. Whether it is enough for him to have run such a bad race I just don’t know but I am hoping it is the reason. He will now be put away for a while.”
The champion trainer, bidding for his fifth Winter Classic, runs only 30-1 outsider Clouded Hill in Saturday’s R250 000 Kenilworth feature. The six-strong field will be the smallest since Naughty Prince beat only four home in 2007. The Vaughan Marshall third string Blackbeard was the only one of the original entries to drop out at yesterday’s declaration stage. Stable companion One World, whose only defeat in eight starts came in the Cape Guineas, remains odds-on at 17-20.
Donovan Dillon, successful on Kheelan Dynasty at Scottsville on his second day back last week, regains the plum ride on Helen’s Ideal in the Stormsvlei Mile. He rode the Paul Reeves filly in her first six races.
There will be a lot of punter interest in Run Fox Run in the Olympic Duel Stakes. The Australian-bred has comfortably won all her three starts and she steps up to Listed company for the first time. Greg Cheyne takes over from Anton Marcus.
By Michael Clower