Trainer Tara Laing maintained her vice grip on South Africa’s longest race when she made it five victories in six renewals of the R150 000 Listed Port Elizabeth Gold Cup at Fairview on Friday.
Trying the 3600m trip for the first time, her 4yo Silvano gelding Plano showed a nice turn of foot when he came from last into the straight to withstand a game late challenge from the consistent Frikkie to win smartly by a half length in a time of 233,40 secs.
In a contest where the pacemaking duties were shared by stablemates Don’t Let Me Down and Desert Wisdom, Hong Kong-bound Callan Murray rode a patient race. He sat dead still as Plano loped along at the rear as Desert Wisdom took it up at the 2000m marker to lead Don’t Let Me Down and the recent maiden winning filly, Zanadu.
In the run for home, Desert Wisdom plugged away as Zanadu came forward to challenge with Frikkie producing his challenge.
But it was the 9-2 shot Plano who had most in reserve and the gallant gelding produced a good effort to hold the tote favourite Frikkie.
The long formless Chappaquiddick ran a better race to bank the R15 000 third cheque a further half length back, with Mike Stewart’s filly Zanadu paying the petrol for her return trip to Noordhoek by staying on for fourth.
Bred by Maine Chance Farms, Plano is a son of Silvano (Lomitas) out of the four-time winning sprinter Paramo (Western Winter).
A graduate of the 2015 Cape Premier Yearling Sale, where Mayfair Speculators bought him for R1 million, Plano has won 4 races with 10 places from 18 starts for stakes of R322 975.
He was recently purchased by Cape owner Etienne Braun in training with Tara Laing.
Tara had a great day, saddling four winners on a great afternoon at the office.