The fancied Oaks Trial winner Aryaam finished 21 lengths off She’s A Cracker in Saturday’s Listed Spook Express Handicap at Turffontein, but had excuses.
The Al Adiyaat raced Dynasty filly had no luck in the feature after being slow away and reportedly pulled up lame on the right hind and right front.
She also took an awkward stride at the cross-over at approximately the 2000m.
Lyle Hewitson reported that he felt something amiss with the Sean Tarry-trained filly in running and did not persevere with his riding from the 200m.
In the same race, Jockey S’manga Khumalo also reported that he felt something amiss with fifth placed (4,75 lengths) Ocean Forest in running. The Veterinary Surgeon reported that she was not striding out.
Earlier in the day Hewitson was questioned about his ride on the three quarter length beaten runner-up and favourite Siren Of Greece in the fourth race.
The former SA champion told the Stewards that from the widest draw his instructions were to drop his mount out and to obtain cover.
She had been prominent in her early races and had weakened in the closing stages. The change of racing tactics on Saturday was intended to allow the her to move through the field in the straight and close the race off strongly.
Hewitson added that had it not been for the slow pace in the early and middle stages of the race, it was his opinion that Siren Of Greece would have been in a position to win the race. The Stewards noted Hewitson’s explanation.
In the eight race Apprentice Xola Jacobs was questioned about his riding of alumite strike, The Lawyer.
Accompanied in the Boardroom by Riding Master Robert Moore, the young rider told the Stewards that from the widest draw, his instructions were to obtain the leading position and to set a strong pace and remain at the front of the field for as long as possible.
He explained that once he had obtained the lead, this gelding had taken a hold of the bit and the lead that he had obtained was greater than anticipated.
The Stewards advised Apprentice Jacobs that his explanation would be noted but he should be aware of his position in races and set a tempo that enables his mounts to be competitive and to close their races off as strongly as possible.