Justin Snaith’s gallant Windrush mare Hurricane Katrina can cook up yet another feature storm when she contests the R130 000 Listed East Cape Paddock Stakes at Fairview on Friday. The honest grey goes for her eleventh win and looks a fair bet over the mile from pole position.
The highest rated runner in the thirteen strong field, Hurricane Katrina is the epitome of true pleasure in racehorse ownership. She seldom runs a below par race and even at the relatively ripe old age, in equine terms, of six,she has lost little enthusiasm for racing.
At her last start, she swept forward in the final 200m to win the Listed East Cape Breeders Stakes in the style of a spring chicken. She beat former Cape campaigner Splendid Sun by two lengths there and Wayne Agrella partners her again. The only margin of doubt exists around her ability to deliver a top rate effort over the mile. She has won once over a mile, but her optimum trip is around the 1200m to 1400m journey. But she is hungry, competitive and dressed to the nines.
Justin Snaith has two solid support runners. Alvilda returns to Port Elizabeth following a short stint in the Cape. She managed a close up third to Pan Amm and was then not disgraced when just over a length behind Jet Lady in the Ladies Mile.
Alvilda’s best form is in this centre and she jumps froma favourable draw. Count To Ten was unplaced in the Winter Oaks last time, and she may prefer the mile again. She acquitted herself very well in her only previous PE start, when running on strongly behind Scented Ash for second in the Breeders Guineas.The engagement of top Cape heavyweight jockey Bernard Fayd’herbe adds to the theory that this one is fancied to run a big race.
Allan Greeff has a powerful three way coupling in Stormy Coast, Jet In The Sky and Grammatica. Stormy Coast ran third in the East Cape Breeders Stakes behind Hurricane Katrina and is now a half kilo better with the Snaith runner. She will be more at home over the mile and has been a model of consistency. Against her is the fact that she has drawn rather wide at 13, but she can run from off the pace.
Jet In The Sky has put in four excellent runs in Port Elizabeth and has won her last three races on the trot. She beat Bella Aroma by 1.50 lengths and holds that one easily. Stuart Randolph rides Stormy Coast ahead of Jet In The Sky, on whom he has won twice. The former Dennis Drier trained Grammatica has poor recent form and was well back in the East Cape Breeders.
Another three way coupling is the Gavin Smith trio of She’s A Lady, Pamela Sue and Bella Aroma. A daughter of Captain Al, She’s a Lady is a course and distance winner and has developed into a caoable filly with a nice turn of foot. She could challenge for the places.
Bella Aroma is five kilos worse off with Jet In The Sky on their last meeting and she has it all to do. She has not won for over a year. Pamela Sue is battling for her fifth win and looks held. She has failed to break through in five local runs. Yvette Bremner’s Scented Ash appears to have lost form since registering a smart feature double earlier this year. She will have to find her form.
The rest look capable of running into place money at best. Dorrie Sham’s Daffodil Day is a consistent daughter of Silvano, who is held by Jet In The Sky and Stormy Coast. She has won 5 of her 25 starts and but for her 12 draw, would have been a natural place selection. Steven Janse Van Rensburg sends out the longshot coupling of Hail The Hearty and Show Time.
Andrew Nienaber rides the 5yo What A Prospect mare Hail The Hearty. She has not won since November and has relatively poor form at her last four starts. Show Time looked promising after winning her first two races on the trot and then went to Gauteng for the SA Fillies Guineas where she ran last. She has been rested for five months and may need a run or two.
Hurricane Katrina is well drawn and has an excellent opportunity to add to her impressive career haul. Her stable companions Alvilda and Count To Ten are no slouches and provide solid Pick six back up. The Greeff coupling of Stormy Coast and Jet In The Sky look likely to give the most cheek.