Woodruff troops on track
PUBLISHED: November 19, 2014
The Geoff Woodruff-trained R2 million Lanzerac Ready To Run Stakes contender, The Captain’s Tune, has been in Cape Town for six weeks already where he is staying in Adam Marcus’s yard and being taken care of by Woodruff’s daughter Lucinda.
The Captain Al gelding was doing his best work late last time out on October 4 in a Graduation Plate over 1600m, finishing just 1,75 lengths behind Bezanova. He was receiving 5kg, but as a three-year-old at that stage of the season he was actually 2,5kg worse off with Bezanova than weight for age terms. Furthermore, Bezanova won the Gr 2 Peermont Emperor’s Palace Charity Mile next time out.
Therefore, on paper, The Captain’s Tune’s put up a top class performance, but it should be taken into account that Bezanova did need the run and came on a lot for it. On the other hand The Captain’s Tune was only 0,75 lengths behind the well regarded runner up, Sun On Africa, at level weights.
However, Woodruff was not overly bullish about The Captain’s Tune’s chances on Saturday and said, “He has qualified and we will be taking our chances. That last race signifies that he has talent and he has a good draw (3) and a good rider (Piere Strydom), but the 1400m will definitely be on the sharp side for him as he is a horse who will soon be looking for 2000m. There has also been a lot of talk about the Cape horses in the race.”
Meanwhile the yard’s Sansui Summer Cup favourite, the Triple Crown hero Louis The King, is in “very good” shape. He ran a flying 0,75 length third in the Charity Mile with topweight under Strydom and Woodruff said, “He has come along nicely since that run and will be ready for the day.”
Woodruff was not too concerned about Summer Cup entry Killua Castle’s 13 length sixth with joint topweight in the Gr 2 Victory Moon Stakes over 1800m on Saturday and said, “I can’t see the form of that race being too important as it came down in buckets just before the start and was run in a bog. We knew the more it rained the less chance he would have from that wide draw and with that weight. He ran a nice enough race and the main thing is that he came out of it well.”
Picture: JC Photos
Belong in the big time
PUBLISHED: November 19, 2014
The Johan Janse Van Vuuren-trained Belong To Me (pictured) left Johannesburg yesterday to run in the R2 million Lanzerac Ready To Run Stakes over 1400m at Kenilworth on Saturday.
The three-year-old Antonius Pius colt won his penultimate start over 1200m on the Turffontein Inside track in impressive style, winning by 4,25 lengths and beating the like of Astro, Pioneer Spirit and Front Rank.
Next time out in the Gr 3 Graham Beck Stakes over 1400m he threw up his head for a stride or two about 100m after the start before being allowed to go three wide around a couple of horses onto the flank of the leader.
That effort took its toll and he didn’t find a lot in the closing stages, but still managed to finish just 3,25 lengths behind the champion colt Harry’s Son, albeit receiving 2,5kg. He confirmed form with the runner up of his penultimate start, Amazing Strike.
The impression given was that he should much prefer the easier Kenilworth Old Course, although it will be his first time on a left hand track.
He will be ridden by Weichong Marwing, who has won on him before, from draw eight. It will be no surprise to see him right up with the pace, from where he will be a dangerous contender.
SA jocks rule
PUBLISHED: November 18, 2014
The South African jockeys walloped the visitors at Kenilworth on Sunday, following up their three-one triumph at Turffontein on Saturday by taking all four international races.
The final points tally in the Racing It’s A Rush match was 547 to 288 and since this particular series was started in 2008 the home team has won five times out of seven.
Disappointed visiting captain James Doyle said: “I think we had bad luck with the draw. Either that or we are all very bad jockeys!”
The biggest name among the visitors may have failed to notch up his first South African success but it was not for want of trying and you could see why Sheikh Mohammed is prepared to pay so much for him as he pulled out one stop after another in an ultra-determined bid to make all on Valerio in the Betting World Handicap. But in the end his mount had no more to give and third was the best he could manage.
Piere Strydom got up close home to win this on the Brett Crawford-trained Independence and the former champion led two furlongs on Roaring Wind for Glen Kotzen in the last to take his total to just two short of his 5 000 target.
Anthony Delpech (right) took the Victor Ludorum (top jockey) award and he kicked off yesterday’s leg with comfortable win on Indaba in the Table Bay Hotel Handicap. The three-year-old has now won three on the trot and Dean Kannemeyer somewhat understandably reckons she has a real future.
He said: “I am going to enter her for the Avontuur Cape Fillies Guineas although, as Anthony said, she really needs 1 800-2 000m. But she has a lot of potential.”
Bernard Fayd’Herbe, taking part in this competition for the first time, landed the Egyptair Handicap on Saint Sophia for Mike Bass on a day the Milnerton maestro could do no wrong.
Pictures: Liesl King
Classic ‘quinella’ for Shaw
PUBLISHED: November 17, 2014
South African trainer Patrick Shaw not only captured his second Singapore Gold Cup with Argentinian-bred stayer Quechua on Sunday, but for good measure, also his second quinella (exacta) in the time-honoured classic.
After Mr Line (Jeff Lloyd) and War Horn ran 1-2 in the 2200m handicap showpiece in 2006, Shaw made several attempts at another golden strike, but none of his runners could quite pass muster until Quechua finally ended the long wait with Emperor’s Banquet running on to complete the stable queue-up.
It was not just Shaw who was saddling the forecast in the Gold Cup as the Yongs of the Avengers/Tmen Stable race both Quechua and Emperor’s Banquet, not to mention they were also the connections behind Mr Line under the Quartet Stable.
The Gold Cup triumph capped a memorable day for Shaw, who had earlier landed three winners.
“This was the big one we’ve long planned for this horse. We bought him especially for the Gold Cup. And this is my second Gold Cup and the second time I’ve finished first and second. When I do a job, I do it well,” joked Shaw who recently underwent a minor surgery.
“We spoke to Corey after he drew wide and the plan was to jump well and go forward and that’s exactly how it panned out.
“As I said before, he’s the true stayer in the race and Corey rode him a treat. Winning the Gold Cup eight years ago with Mr Line and War Horn second was special but this is also special, especially as I’ve done it again for the Yong family who have been wonderful supporters of mine for a long time.
“I will give him a break now and we’ll look at races like the SIA Cup and the Derby for him next year.”
The $3 million Group 1 Singapore Airlines International Cup in May and the $1.15 million Group 1 Emirates Singapore Derby in July are Singapore’s two most coveted races over 2000m.
– Singapore Turf Club
Tevez on target
PUBLISHED: November 17, 2014
Cape Merchants king Mike Bass did it again at Kenilworth yesterday, winning this hugely competitive handicap for the seventh time in 17 years and, for good measure, sending out three of the first four.
Aldo Domeyer on last year’s winner Tevez, trying to thread his way through the eye of a needle approaching the furlong marker, had to switch right when the tiny gap closed but he still got up on the 8-1 chance 30m out to beat Daring Dave by three-quarters of a length. Hammie’s Hooker was a head away third, half a length in front of Lanner Falcon.
Bass said: “I liked Lanner Falcon and Tevez but I had a lot of respect for Hammie’s Hooker and I think her next run will be the Diadem here on 27 December. Then I will consider either the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate or the Maine Chance Paddock Stakes, both on 10 January.”
Capetown Noir, beaten less than four lengths into eighth and running for the first time since July day, delighted Dean Kannemeyer after running prominently throughout. He said: “I was very pleased. That will bring him on tremendously and I will fit another race in before the Queen’s Plate.”
But, sadly for punters, De Kock added to the appalling record of favourites in this race – the last 13 have all lost. This time the 9-2 chance was in trouble a long way out and finished with only four behind him.
A disappointed Corne Orffer said: “His work had been so good yet he was the first horse gone.”
Mercury Sprint winner Fly By Night made Bass’s day by making a winning return under Grant van Niekerk in the conditions plate and her trainer said: “The Betting World Cape Flying Championship is her mission and she could run in Southern Cross and Sceptre en route.”
Picture: Tevez winning the Cape Merchants at Kenilworth on Saturday (Liesl King)