Wealthy is in fine form
PUBLISHED: January 16, 2020
Wealthy has always managed to fly under the radar and won this race last year at whopping odds of 22/1. The bay gelding is now a seven-year-old…
The Dennis Drier-trained Wealthy is in fine shape ahead of his bid to retain his Listed Michael Roberts Handicap crown at Scottsville on Sunday.
Wealthy has always managed to fly under the radar and won this race last year at whopping odds of 22/1. The bay gelding is now a seven-year-old but is a typically evergreen son of Silvano and after three good comeback runs this season the bookmakers might have been more wary. However, once again he is a long shot and is quoted at 16,67/1 by Hollywoodbets.
So far this season Wealthy has run third in the Listed Michaelmas Handicap over 1900m at Greyville, fourth in a handicap over 2000m at Greyville and a close second in the KZN Summer Challenge 2000 final at Scottsville.
His merit rating has come down one point this season from 99 to 98 and he carries a nice galloping weight of 54,5kg. He also has a good draw of five in the 14 horse field.
Last year off an 85 merit rating Wealthy was 1kg under sufferance and won by 0,75 lengths from Dark Moon Rising, who carried 60kg. He faces the latter horse on identical terms. Dark Moon Rising is returning from a layoff, yet he is quoted at 10/1.
Wealthy is effectively only one point higher in the merit ratings for this year’s race compared to last year as the 1kg he was under sufferance and the across the board ten point raise at the beginning of the season must be taken into account.
Dennis Drier’s assistant trainer Stuart Ferrie said, “He is very well. His last three starts have been very good and he’s honest. He’s well drawn not that it makes that much difference because he comes from off them anyway.”
The race favourite is the Brett Crawford-trained G G’s Dynasty, who has won four of his last six starts from 1400m to 1600m. His dam by Right Approach won twice over 1200m and 1400m respectively, so there is a slight question mark over the trip, although the Vodacom Durban July-winning Dynasty’s influence will help.
The five-year-old Silvano gelding Born To Perform is out of July winner Dancer’s Daughter, so this lightly five-time winner from just nine starts should stay the trip.
The value in the race could be the 14.29/1 shot Marchingontogether as he has won all four of his starts around the turn at Scottsville. Bernard Fayd’Herbe will be riding him as Gavin van Zyl’s stable jockey Warren Kennedy is aboard Michaelmas winner Blackball.
Other eyecatching contenders are Christmas Handicap winner The Dazzler and the talented Tristful.
However, none of the runners can be discounted and it should be a thriller.
By David Thiselton
Lafferty yard going all out for Challenge
PUBLISHED: January 16, 2020
Lafferty led the trainers table before yesterday’s Scottsville meeting with 394 points. Breathing down his neck were Garth Puller and Alyson Wright…
Paul Lafferty’s Summerveld yard are going all out to hang on to their lead in the Hollywoodbets Sizzling Summer Challenge.
Every race in KZN from the beginning of December until the end of February counts towards the competition. The points gathered for each race, whether a Grade 1 or a maiden, is dependent on the number of horses in the field and the finishing position. If there are ten runners in a race the winner will get ten points, the runner up nine points and so on all the way down to the tenth placed finisher who will get one point. If there are seven runners in the race then the winner gets seven points, the runner up six etc. The points are awarded to the relevant trainer, jockey and horse.
At the end of the competition the top six trainers, jockeys and horses will split respective prize money of R250,000 apiece.
The top trainer, jockey and horse will each receive R100,000.
Lafferty led the trainers table after yesterday’s Scottsville meeting with 447 points. Breathing down his neck were Garth Puller and Alyson Wright on 429 and 414 points respectively. Dean Kannemeyer, Duncan Howells and Dennis Drier were next best on 337, 324.5 and 314 respectively.
Lafferty’s assistant trainer Roy Waugh revealed that a virus which had plagued the yard for a long time appeared to have been conquered and the horses were currently performing well.
He said, “It was the most insidious virus, I have never see anything like it, and it hit us for about a year. They think it is a herpes virus, but they are not sure. The horses become anaemic overnight and it was very hard to get rid of. We ended up spraying virus-cides everyday, then we started vaccinating with rhinopneumonitis every three to four months. The symptoms were subtle and the horses didn’t look bad or train bad but they would then run twenty lengths below their form. If you could, the right thing to do was to just stop racing. This would allow them to recover and get their immunity back. If you brought them back too quickly they would get it again. So we haven’t seen the virus since October but we have had to build the horses up again and get them fit.”
The yard is thus on an upward curve and, for Hollywoodbets Sizzling Summer Competition purposes, the horses are coming well at the right time.
The yard had a winner yesterday but so did Puller and the pair joined Kannemeyer on the most winners during the competition, seven.
Dennis Drier would likely have started favourite for the competition but it falls at the wrong time as he has a string down in Cape Town. Drier’s assistant trainer Stuart Ferrie said the yard welcomed any points gathered for the competition but they were taking things as they came and not doing anything out of the norm to try and win it.
Anton Marcus and Warren Kennedy, amazingly enough, were locked together at the top of the jockeys table after yesterday’s meeting on a tally of 657 points apiece. Keagan de Melo is hot on their heels on 653 points.
Marcus increased his lead early in the meeting when winning the first on Heroic Victory, the first leg of a double on the day for Gareth van Zyl. Warren Kennedy fought back by winning the second on the Gavin van Zyl-trained Living Waters but Marcus then won the third on the Glen Kotzen-trained Imperial Rage. However, Kennedy rode in all eight races while Marcus only rode in four and this allowed the former to close the gap.
The Lafferty-trained Bint El Malak won for the second time third time in four runs during the challenge yesterday and she leads the horse table on 55 points, 15 clear of her stablemate Explosive Beauty. The Darryl Moore-trained Forest Jump rose to third place on 38 points courtesy of her runner up finish in the first race.
Meanwhile, the Lafferty yard’s three best horses, Dark Moon Rising, Sniper Shot and Share Holder, are gearing up for the SA Champions Season.
Dark Moon Rising carries topweight of 62,5kg in Sunday’s LIsted Michael Roberts Handicap over 1750m at Scottsville.
He is returning from a three month layoff.
Waugh said, “He is doing alright. He is carrying a lot of weight and the distance is a bit short of his best but he will run a decent race, he will be there or thereabouts. It’s his comeback run but he runs well fresh.”
Share Holder is close to full recovery from a nasty foot injury.
After winning his debut back in February he managed to pull his “whole quarter off.”
He is still running with bar shoes and Waugh reckoned that only with his next shoeing will the foot have fully grown back.
He finished unplaced yesterday over 1200m in a Novice Plate.
However, the strapping Australian-bred colt by Zoffany should be right by the time of SA Champions season features like the Grade 2 Daisy Guineas.
Sniper Shot has been doing well and is due to make his comeback in March.
By David Thiselton
Rowett elected head of NHA
PUBLISHED: January 16, 2020
Rowett is the first lady Chairperson to be appointed in the 138 years history of The National Horseracing Authority of Southern Africa…
The National Horseracing Authority is proud to announce the appointment of Susan Rowett as its new Chairperson. Rowett is the first lady Chairperson to be appointed in the 138 years history of The National Horseracing Authority of Southern Africa (previously known as The Jockey Club of Southern Africa).
Rowett holds a Master of Jurisprudence degree and a Master of Management degree and is a Director of a multinational packaging company. Rowett is also a Life Member of The National Horseracing Authority and, as a thoroughbred racehorse breeder and owner, Rowett has been actively involved in the horseracing industry in South Africa for forty years.
Rowett has served as Chairperson on various Boards within the horseracing industry and previously served as a National Board Director from November 2012 until April 2016 when the constitution of the NHA was amended, at a Special General Meeting, in order to restructure the National Board.
The NHA and its National Board hereby wishes to thank the previous Chairman, Ken Truter, for successfully leading the organisation through some turbulent times over his three year tenure as Chairman. Truter will continue to serve as a National Board Director.
Candy Galore was sweet at the weights
PUBLISHED: January 16, 2020
The 6kg difference was reduced to 1.5kg yesterday and Candy Galore gave young Gareth van Zyl his second winner of the afternoon…
The handicappers made short work of Whizz Of Odds rise to fortune as the diminutive filly proved no match for Candy Galore at Hollywoodbets Scottsville yesterday. There was six lengths between the pair when last they met over course and distance and Gavin van Zyl’s filly was lumped with a seven-pound penalty for that win. The 6kg difference was reduced to 1.5kg yesterday and Candy Galore gave young Gareth van Zyl his second winner of the afternoon after saddling Heroic Deed to a comfortable win in the card opener.
Apprentice Denis Schwarz, out of his time next week and Gauteng-based, is becoming a regular in KZN and his services will be in high demand if he continues to ride as he did yesterday, setting Candy Galore alight when it mattered and leaving Whizz Of Odds battling to hold off third-placed Be Happy.
In retrospect Whizz Of Odds had a lot against her and was beaten by an older filly that had looked to be going places earlier in her career.
Anton Marcus’s bid for five consecutive victories came up short in the fourth where favourite Paybackthemoney could only manage third. Marcus had two wins from two rides at Kenilworth on Saturday and had two winners from two under his belt going into the fourth.
Thabiso Gumede is one of the most laid-back apprentices in the Jockey Academy but has plenty of ability as he showed when getting Twice Golden to quicken from last to master Wildlife Safari and Paybackthemoney. Twice Golden was aided by a postage stamp on his back, the two older runners giving him 8.5kg and 12kg respectively.
Marcus kicked off the meeting with an easy victory on Heroic Deed in the first with favourite Forest Jump relegated to second once again with the luckless Khanya Sakayi winless for nearly six months after a stellar start to his career.
It was the turn of Gavin van Zyl and Warren Kennedy in the second as Living Waters built on his promising debut to run out a comfortable winner of the second even though Black Fox under Schwarz and Fade To Black under Keagan de Melo pressed hard at one stage.
Marcus earned every cent of his riding fee on favourite Imperial Rage as he got Glen Kotzen’s runner home in a driving finish.
Given a pedestrian early pace, Marcus took the initiative and went clear before the field turned for home. It proved an inspired move but the three-times champion jockey was forced to pump away for 800m to hold off Rock With Me and Cassius Colt.
Enjoy The View finished tailed off behind Spiritofthegroove with heat fatigue in his last start at Turffontein but his form before that had been patchy hence his 22-1 starting price. Serino Moodley made no mistakes on Michael Roberts’s charge yesterday as he pounced at just the right time to hold off the mare Made In Hollywood and favourite Wave.
By Andrew Harrison
Do It Again’s Met run in the balance
PUBLISHED: January 15, 2020
Justin Snaith said yesterday: “We are doing a lot of things to try and get him ready and we are going to see what his wellbeing is like closer to the race.
Do It Again’s participation in the Sun Met on Saturday fortnight hangs in the balance after the horse’s L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate run was found to have taken more out of him than normal – and apparently this was due to a delay after the race as much as to the 22 minute hold-up at the start.
Justin Snaith said yesterday: “We are doing a lot of things to try and get him ready and we are going to see what his wellbeing is like closer to the race. Much will depend on the next week or so.
“The ten minute wait after the race was something the horses didn’t need and there seemed to be confusion between the course vet and the stipes. We were waiting for the all-clear from the stipes and every time the vet asked if he could let the horses go there was no answer forthcoming. The horses were tired and dehydrated and we wanted to get a hosepipe on them.
“What happened makes my job of getting Do It Again ready for the Met that little bit harder and it just might prove to have been the turning point in whether he runs or not.”
Senior stipe Ernie Rodrigues, who was dealing with another matter while the course vet was waiting for a decision, yesterday confirmed that there was a delay in giving the go-ahead for the horses to leave the parade ring post-race.
In contrast Adam Marcus was delighted with the way the winner Vardy came out of the race and said: “You expect a horse to take a day or two to recover after winning a race like that but Vardy was jumping out of his skin and I couldn’t be happier with him.
“Twist Of Fate (fourth) also came through it exceptionally well and Aldo Domeyer feels he will be better suited to the 2 000m of the Met.”
The trainer’s uncle kept punters happy by winning on his only ride of the day, the superbly bred newcomer Our Prized Jewel who started 9-10 favourite for the 1 200m maiden. The Ridgemont-Highlands homebred is a half-sister to Cape Fillies Guineas winner Silver Mountain and to Cloth Of Cloud who won the SA Nursery.
The 9-10 shot led two furlongs out and won convincingly. “She hadn’t been tuned up at home and she might take another run or two to learn what it is all about,” said Anton Marcus. “But she is a nice filly, she has ability and I like her.”
Also odds-on was Cape Guineas runner-up Viva Rio who put up a good performance under top weight in the Tabonline.co.za Progress Plate with Morne Winnaar’s mount scoring by two and a quarter lengths.
“This should have been a 1 800m race going towards the Cape Derby (Feb 22) but they changed the programme and put it back to a mile, “said Glen Kotzen.” Viva Rio is a proper horse and the Derby is where he is heading.”
By Michael Clower