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July Favourite Stays At 121

Liege Goes To 100

The handicappers report on the weekend:

  • Daily News 2000 (Grade 1)

HAWWAAM’s rating remains unchanged on 121 after his fluent win in the Daily News 2000 (Grade 1) at Greyville on Saturday, 1 June.  The Handicappers agreed that the appropriate line horse to use in rating the race was the ultra-consistent runner-up TWIST OF FATE, who once again appeared to run his race and therefore his rating also remains unaltered on 117.

Anton Marcus and Hawwaam (Pic – Chase Liebenberg Photography)

Third placed CAPOEIRA showed big improvement and as such his rating has shot up from 81 to 105.   It must be borne in mind that he came into the Daily News rated 23 pounds inferior to the next lowest rate horse (jointly ATYAAB and CHARLES) and it is also interesting to note that every other runner in the race finished exactly in rating order.  As such, it was clear to the Handicappers that CAPOEIRA was the “odd man out” in this scenario and it is believed that he is a progressive three-year-old who deserves his new, higher rating. The Handicappers deemed that CAPOEIRA has not yet established a profile and is a lightly raced, improving type who was trying a different distance, having not raced beyond 1750m previously.

Fourth placed ZILLZAAL was dropped from 105 to 104, while THANKSGIVING was dropped from 106 to 104.  The remaining duo of CHARLES and ATYAAB (who suffered a nosebleed during the race) remain on 104, so all of those who finished behind CAPOEIRA are now rated one pound inferior to him.

  • Woolavington 2000 (Grade 1)

SILVANO’S PRIDE’s rating was upped from 106 to 109 after she clearly benefitted from a step up in distance and won the Woolavington 2000 (Grade 1) at Greyville on Saturday.  In assessing this three-year-old fillies’ event, the Handicappers felt that fourth placed SEVILLE ORANGE was unlikely to have run worse here than when she ran to a 102 in finishing third in the Grade 2 SA Oaks at Turffontein on 30 March and used that performance as the yardstick to rate the Woolavington.

Accordingly, SEVILLE ORANGE’s rating was raised from 99 to 102, one pound below third placed BLOSSOM, who basically confirmed Oaks form with SEVILLE ORANGE and whose rating was upped from 103 to 104.  Runner-up FRONT AND CENTRE was left unchanged on 112 after she hung right across from the outside to the inside of the course in the straight, causing interference to several rivals in the process.

In the only other changes, SNAPSCAN and MADONNA were both raised to 89 from 81 and 82 respectively.  This pair had dominated the finish to the Listed East Cape Oaks at Fairview on 19 April, with MADONNA beating SNAPSCAN by a diminishing head.  The Handicappers feel that on overall form there is virtually nothing to choose between them and thus opted to rate them as equals for the time being.

  • Lonsdale Stirrup Cup (Handicap (Grade 3)

LIEGE has had his rating increased from 95 to 100 after his comfortable win in the Lonsdale Stirrup Cup over 2400m at Greyville on Saturday.

LIEGE seemed to lose his way after winning the 2017 Grade 1 Summer Cup, but the Lonsdale distance of 2400m brought him back to prominence even if his new rating is still well shy of his career high 110.

The Handicappers agreed that third placed SILVER ROSE was the correct line horse.  As such, his rating remains unchanged, while runner-up GIMME ONE NIGHT was raised from 91 to 92.  Fourth placed DYNASTY’S BLOSSOM, fifth finisher ROY’S RIVIERA and sixth placed SILVA’S BULLET all ran to their marks as well, and so all three remain unaltered.

The other changes were to STRATHDON, who drops from 102 to 101, FLICHITY BY FARR goes from 94 to 93, and NOBLE SECRET drops from 105 to 104.

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28 comments on “July Favourite Stays At 121

  1. Mathew de Kock says:

    Although very opinionated I find these rating change articles very informative to the public and the concerned parties. Well done for the transparency.


    Indeed Mathew, I agree. We all might not agree with the handicappers summation about the pace of a race, why they think a horses MR went up or down, line-horse selected, etc etc.

    Now, at least though, we are privy to their mind-set, handicapping mentality, whatever whatever….

    Whenever I read a NHA handicapping announcement, I cope by immersing myself in a tune from the Dobbie Brothers :-

    Where the big trains run
    When the trains are movin’ on

    When pistons keep on churnin’
    And the wheels go ’round and ’round
    And the steel rails lie cold and hard
    For the miles that they go down

    Without NHA
    Where would you be right now
    Without the NHaaaaaaa

    Where would you be nowwww

  3. Wayne Fouche says:

    What a pleasant surprise to read that his rating remains unchanged. The correct line horse was used.

    Hawwaam will need to keep a straight course in the July (assuming he runs) to avoid any possible objection.

  4. Lou Syfer says:

    When I see the handicappers working of the races I wonder whether a true handicap is done, or rather, the line horse is chosen that gives the required MR ratings. In many cases, a different line horse results in a far different outcome. What irritates me is the handicappers proclaiming something as fact when reading a race, the obvious example being the recent Vardy/One World race. Who says One World stayed?

  5. Rian says:

    Sunday Hollywood had Hawaam at 14/10, Today he 16/10 next two stayed the same, somebody playing games…..
    Its cruel that the betting public are still waiting for answers with a month to go, SHOCKING

    1. Editor says:

      Answers to what, Rian?

  6. Rian says:

    How can they possibly raise Capeira to a 105 its F—ing madness
    He was been hard ridden to get a place in a slow time etc etc etc
    This is not MERIT its punishment.

  7. Rayner says:

    It’s been a long time since we were blessed with a Pick 6 banker on July day. If Hawwaam runs, he is a very hard horse to beat and I will banker him with confidence.

  8. Rian says:

    If Hawaam is going to run !!!!!!!! Surely as a Trainer Owner,Racing Manager one should have had a program mapped out for a Special Horse

    1. Editor says:

      Mike de Kock said his wish is that Hawwaam runs in July – he is consulting his owner and the racing manager
      He is not obliged to do anything else prior to Monday 24 June at 11h00

  9. Head Scratcher says:

    Quite lucrative punishment Rian. R200k in stakes money. That is worth three MR handicap wins. What should the punishment have been?

  10. Rian says:

    We all heard him Ed , many times that it was not up to him…..comments i posted a while ago that I dont think he will run and that the OWNER will decide , I will stick to them
    As for the punishment, he was supplemented at a cost and its not about the money its about the MERIT of his run , at a second slower than the fillies
    Where to from here for Capoeira ?????

  11. DaveR says:

    Hawwaam still hasn’t bumped anything the quality of the two rated horses in the country in Do It Again and Rainbow Bridge. I sure as nuts won’t be bankering him in my P6. If he’s a little slow away again he will have a wall of horses in front of him right from the outset given the usual frenetic early pace in the July.


    Lou Syfer – ” the line horse is chosen that gives the required MR ratings ” . That’s how it looks to me, Sir.

    I contend that they are working or balancing up backwards or reconciling their work-template to get to a required MR result.

    The Daily News was a workout for Hawwaan. Nothing was going on in the first 700 to 900 metres, nothing ! There was no contest for the lead or a fight for a position.

    As per Mr Moodley’s assurance at the “Kenilworth get together” this race should be ignored completely for the sake of MR assessments.

    Certainly punters and connections should ignore it for the purposes of a progress report… future engagements planned.

    What have we learnt about Charles from this race …nothing ?

    Imagine if Twist of Fate or say Zilzaal had taken a chance like Orpheus did, win or lose, today we would be much more wiser to ALL participants true ability.

  13. Cecil says:

    Hey William. “I don’t belief in If anymore”

    Isn’t July a wonderful time ? Even my wife’s mother heard the name Hawwaam and this scares me. Last (only) time she tipped a July winner was back in 81, Big Charles, the old girl linked it to Prince Charles. OMG, she thought he was cute… not the horse, the Prince….

    We all want Hawwaam to run, and if he does, we’ll look for something to beat him. If he doesn’t, so be it, another horse gets a chance.

    MdK and team knows best and ultimately their decision. My opinion, he is a Champion horse. Sat day he could do no more than win.

    Here is the BUT, I think he can be beaten in The July. Rainbow Bridge prep runs and timings spot on …. Hoped my fancy Magnificent 7 had one more run.

    Look fwd to Soqrat, Do it Again, RB race this w/e.

    Look fwd to some tips

  14. Head Scracther says:

    How do you define a false run race which should be ignored William? No long explanation please but a one or two sentence definition which can be applied by any person to every race. No where in the world do they ignore races which are considered falsely run so you must have some unique insight which all the other experts don’t have.

    Rian what is the MERIT you refer to? You keep poking holes into the official line but you present nothing other than lots of empty words. What would you have done as the official handicapper? Show us your numbers not just some moan about fairness. Are you a millennial living in a basement cellar?

    While you all are gnashing your teeth perhaps you should look at what AR’s Sporting Post gave this race. Maybe you’d like to throw some criticism their way as well once you do. Good golly 102 for the third horse in a race run as a training gallop. It must be wrong.

  15. Nico Tsaousis says:

    I agree with Mathew de Kock that the announcements are good for the sport. I am an overseas fan of SA horse racing, and I get a better experience. Also the feeling of both transparency and fairness contribute to SA racing reaching to more and more punters and philipps across the globe.

    I have studied communication, and I can say that on the downside, once you have the NHA thinking out, there will be objections voiced, it’s inevitable. This is countered to the benefit of the sport by the level of involvement.

    So yes, please, more news on handicap ratings and their changes.

    A last note to the issue of whether Hawwaam will run or not, I believe that the favourite should run even from the worst draw, and even if not winning. The very experience of winning or loosing against such a horse raises the status of participation. If big horses fail to reach the rails is bad publicity for SA horse racing, especially overseas.

  16. Rian says:

    Of course its wrong Head Scratcher !! without gnashing ones teeth or damaging any bottles in the basement cellar, we are not all Sheep
    Never been a fan of the M/R system in this country
    Why would they leave the winners rating the same after such a fantastic win/ run

  17. Head Scratcher says:

    I am now completely lost with your logic Rian. First you think it unfair that a horse which runs third gets a penalty. Then you think there is something wrong when the winner gets no penalty. So you want the winner to go up in rating but the horse which finished third should not be punished? Hmf – confused!!

  18. Pops says:

    This is what Dave Mollett with 2 Ts said on the 18th March 2019–
    While Hawwaam is quoted at about 7-1 in early betting on the Vodacom Durban July, De Kock has warned the colt is unlikely to contest SA’s famous race and head instead for the Daily News 2000 — a Gr 1 race confined to three-year-olds
    And which horse won the Daily News 2000?

  19. Rian says:

    Hmf, now im confused , is it maybe smart formula for L handicappers


    Head Scratcher, SA’s leading 3yo race for boys over 2000m was a less than satisfactory pace for 1200, a quickening up for 300m and then a sprint for 500m.

    Twist of Fate’s proximity to Hawwaam at the end simply highlighted the lack of a searching early pace in the first half of the race. Twist of Fate managed to keep up with Hawwaam for the last 300 metres using his sprinting speed.

    In turn, Hawwaam could have pressed the button at anytime during the race to show that his superiority over Twist of Fate is far greater than 1.6 l

    Hawwaam completed this victory very comfortably, in the form of a workout. He wasn’t required to run anywhere near is ability of about 120. I award him a 113 MR.

    Twist of Fate’s effort, for me, is measured as nothing more than a 109. Neither of these two runners have lost their ability to perform at their previous best, it’s just the way the race panned out.

    These below par efforts are borne out by the lowly rated Capoeira running third.

    It’s my opinion, that this race is best ignored for the purposes of assessing any of the runners future potential ability with past MR’s attained.

    Cecil, I yearn for Hawwaam to have a Model Man/Potomac type clash in the July with Rainbow Bridge or Do It Again. I’m just conservative with dishing out 125’s and 126’s willy nilly. I really believe Hawwaam has the potential to be a 126+.

    As the great Weichong Marwing said after Horse Chestnut’s win in the Met, “ I don’t know how good he really is, pity we didn’t have another horse to go with him at the 500m mark, then we really would have seen him extend even further away”

  21. Graham Martin says:

    This is for Head scratcher if he cares to read the following:
    Speedpoint ran 2nd to Kasimir in the Diadem at Kenilworth on the 23rd of February. His MR was raised from 109 to 114. The following horses had a higher MR than Speedpoint in the Diadem:
    Bold Respect 116, (2nd in he Cape Flying)
    Search Party 112 (3rd in the Cape Flying
    Trip To Heaven 111 ( 5th in the Cape Flying
    At this point Speedpoint had a MR of 109 (7th in the Cape Flying)
    Now read the following carefully ok? After Speedpoint ran 2nd in the Diadem the so called handicappers said that this horse IMPROVED so much to the extent that they raised his MR to 114, an increase of 5 MR points. His MR then became higher than all of Bold Respect (116 to 113) Sergeant Hardy (112 to 108) Attenborough (110 to 107) Search Party (112 to 110) Trip To Heaven (111 to 109)
    The fact that Speedpoint finished ahead of Bold Respect, Search Party, Trip To Heaven and Sand And Sea ( all these horses finished in front of Speedpoint in the Cape Flying) raises the question, WAS THIS RUN A FORM RUN by Speedpoint ? or was it a fluke run or a once off run because the handicappers stated that it was an “IMPROVED” Run!
    Speedpoint, since the Diadem has done nothing, running against the same horses he was’nt supposed to beat (on COLLATERAL FORM) in the Diadem! i.e. the Computaform and a pinnacle stks at Turffontein. In my opinion the handicappers should have waited for Speedpoint to CONFIRM his 2nd placing in the Diadem before hiking his MR from 109 to 114! and also in my opinion this should apply to ALL HUGE MR increases for all horses!
    I thank you.
    P.S. I agree with what Rian says!


    Cecil, you right. Let’s get Roger Whittaker to serenade the trainers of the July runners with that song.

    If… if, if we get a good pace.

    I’m living in hope and dying in despair for a solid pace from the jump.

    Cecil and then, I like Nico Tsaousis idea that even if Hawwaam gets a bum draw he wishes he will still run. Me too.

    Big Charles, from Malmesbury, dressed up in yellow and green trunks, weighting in @ …..kgs. Dr. Naude’s horse, I remember well !

  23. Frankie says:

    Frankie Zackey…Only upsetting part of the daily news for me is that Charles will probably not make the cut bad news for my July quartets..had it been a solid gallop from the start he runs 3rd not that far off Twist of Fate and earning him 6 or 7 points plus cements his place in the July….Hawwaam from Do it Again… bettingworld has Do it Again and Rainbow Bridge in a match play bet i thought Christmas only comes once a year


    Frankie, I concur with you about Charles. That cannot be the real Charles. He needs a searching pace to show his real potential, which I believe he has to offer.

  25. Frankie says:

    Frankie Zackey…William you Absolutely spot on pity…Barahin with 53kg one must take seriously…hard to choose now who will run 2nd I think always being a weight fan I might just have to go with Barahin

  26. Vic says:

    Eyes wide open has to have a shout.this horse is consistent and has matured into a perfect specimen..shrewd bet for me.just as I had thought strongly of the conglomerate in 2016..

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