Here’s an SA Champions Season aperitif if we have ever seen one! A quality field of our top speed fillies and mares go to post for the R250 000 Gr3 Poinsettia Stakes at Scottsviille today.
The Poinsettia heads a jackpot of features offered at Scottsville today, where the official going is posted as ”good to soft’, despite no rain or irrigation in the past 7 days.
With the start of the big season on Friday, the tempo of racing in the holiday province has been upped and we get a taste of better and bigger things to come!
The 1200m contest is run at weight-for-age plus penalties and has attracted a class field of 16. including last year’s winner The Secret Is Out and third-placed Live Life, who are set to renew rivalry against a backdrop of a serious challenge from the new generation.
Now owned by Mauritzfontein in partnership with Marsh Shirtliff and Bryn Ressell, Magical Wonderland, winner of the Cartier Sceptre before finishing third in the CTS 1200, is a top class 3yo, whose season aim is the Gr1 SA Fillies Sprint next month at this venue. She is reportedly a filly who doesn’t take much work and her running here comes as a change of plans after the stable announced that she would not race before the Gr1 next month.
The switch of the recent Listed KZN Stakes to the Greyville poly disrupted the prep of the promising Dynasty filly Statute who runs fresh off a seven week break. She has won 2 from 4 and is headed in the right direction.
Neptune’s Rain was one filly who refused to allow the switch of that feature to impact on her progress. The daughter of Antonius Pius produced an electrifying turn of foot to win from a fairly hopeless position and has been labelled a Gr1 performer by her astute trainer. Anton Marcus rides her again and she is another who is being aimed at the big sprint raceday.
Listed Laisserfaire Stakes winner Sommerlied’s form has tapered negatively since her win back in November but she broke the 1000m record at this track and cannot be discarded.
Topweighted Live Life is the second of the Bass-Robinson duo. She comes in off her dazzling and fast-finishing third to Sergeant Hardy in the Cape Flying Championship on Met day. The daughter of Trippi, who ran third in this race last year, is 2,5kgs worse off with The Secret Is Out, and is likely to need the outing.
Last year’s winner, the lightly raced The Secret Is Out has won 5 of her 10 starts and showed pace in a barrier trial blow on 8 April. The daughter of Captain Al is top class and could achieve the double – but she did bleed when winning at Durbanville back in October 2017.
A tricky and quality race where Magical Wonderland and Neptune’s Rain could hold the edge.