Muzi Yeni and Running Brave led the field a merry dance and caused a major upset when making all the running in the KwaZulu-Natal Breeders Mile at Hollywoodbets Greyville yesterday.
Friendless in the market and starting at 18-1, Yeni had no hesitation in sending Paul Matchett’s filly to the front from the jump. Midway through the race, it all looked to be panning out as expected with favourites Nexus and dual Fillies Guineas winner Mississippi Burning both well placed and within striking distance turning for home.
However, when all came off the bridle, Running Brave still had plenty of gas in the tank and try as they may, Nexus and Mississippi Burning were not able to peg back the deficit and indeed, made no impression on the winner over the final furlong.
It was the complete opposite in the Track & Ball Oaks, the race switched from Hollywoodbets Scottsville last week after a jockey protest and the meeting abandoned. The Robbie Hill-trained rank outsider Moon In June, 49-1 with the books and R52.70 on the tote, lobbed along at the rear as the field travelled for home at a leisurely pace.
Things only got serious approaching the final turn and Craig Zackey asked his mount her first serious question. The answer was positive as Moon In June swung wide off the rail and getting a dream split, she quickened through the middle of the field.
Kelpie and Ballet Shoes got first run but Moon In June was not to be denied even with Kelpie lugging in and forcing her off a straight line.
Favourite Chitengo was compromised by the pedestrian early pace and was unable to go with them in the sprint for the wire and finished a modest fourth.
For Pick 6 punters it was back to the drawing boards for another stab come Vodacom Durban July day with the Michael Roberts-trained Ad Altisima the only favourite obliging. Serino Moodley, who has his first VDJ ride aboard Padre Pio for Dennis Bosch in the big one, had Ad Altisima out quickly looking for a lead which he never surrendered and Ad Altisima was pulling away from his rivals when they hit the line. From that opening leg, it all went pear-shaped for the Pick 6.
By Andrew Harrison