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Game Over

Vaal 21st March: This was the meeting originally scheduled to take place at the Turffontein inner track. A maiden event over 1400m got proceedings underway and here we saw an impressive performance from the aptly named GAME OVER (37). Sent off a well supported favourite at 11/10, Roy Magner’s charge sat in midfield during the early part of the race. He was asked to take up the running as they approached the 400m marker and after quickly drawing clear, he went on to score by eight. This son of Roi Normand won well and is clearly one to keep tabs on.

Another to come home lonely on this card was the Jet Master mare MISS TURBULENCE (81). She registered her eighth career victory in the conditions plate over 1400m. Taken straight to the front by apprentice Lee, Weiho Marwing’s charge was always a couple of lengths clear. She quickened nicely going through the 300m and despite the efforts of the running on KNOCK AND ANNOUNCE, she more than doubled her advantage on the run to the line.

Race seven on the card was a MR94 Handicap over 1800m and here victory went to the Mike De Kock trained CAPTAIN’S WILD (89). Allowed to ease right out to 11/2 from 33/10 at the track as money came for both GOLDEN COMPASS (6/1 into 9/2) and his more fancied stable companion BEIT BRIDGE (16/10 into 13/10 favourite), Captain’s Wild was content to race towards the rear during the early part of the race. The eleven runners were always tightly bunched though and when the race began in earnest 500m out, he quickly began to work his way through the field. He struck the front 220m from home and in eye catching style he drew clear easily in the closing stages to win by three. Captain’s Wild has now won four of his seven career starts to date and on the evidence of today’s win, further improvement is still to come.

Titbits After racing in the rear, SUN EMPEROR was finishing best of all when only beaten a neck in the MR76 affair over 1800m.


Flying Home

Fairview 22nd March: The most impressive victory in the maiden ranks in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday was undoubtedly that of HOME BRU who opened her account in the 1400m event. Freely available at 14/1 on the off, Gavin Smith’s charge was stone last in a very strung out field as the sixteen runners turned for home. Once in the long home straight though, he steadily began to work his way into contention and under a well judged ride from Samango Khumalo, he got up nicely late to beat the more fancied SOLAIRE going away.

Another to win well from off the pace on this card was the Barry Steenkamp trained AUDIT REPORT. Running on strongly from towards the rear, in another large field, the nibbled at son of Lecture (12/1 into 8/1) finished best of all and got up late to deny the more fancied ROMAN ART.

The only favourite on the card to oblige (and a joint favourite at that) was the former Natal campaigner MAKZOOS who registered his sixth career victory from just 21 starts in the afternoon’s feature event, a MR90 Handicap over 1600m. Always handy, Gavin Smith’s charge was ridden to lead 300m out and under a very determined ride from Warren Kennedy, he just held on by a neck from the running on HURRICANE KATRINA.

Titbits – Only beaten a neck in the MR90 Handicap, the hattrick seeking HURRICANE KATRINA was taking on the boys and she finished best of all. She had won her previous two starts against members of her own sex and has to be a very serious runner when back with the girls.  The runner up in the MR66 Handicap over 1000m, DANCING LEE has caught the eye running on stoutly now in each of his last four starts.


Single Lady

Greyville 22nd March: Followers of the money got off to a nice start at Greyville on Tuesday evening when the well supported newcomer PINOT NOIR (23) did the business in the opening maiden juvenile event over 1300m. The first of four winners on the card for Anton Marcus, Pinot Noir was in the red at 9/10 on the off (opened 14/10). Nicely drawn in gate four, Sean Tarry’s charge got away well when the gates opened and raced up with the speed throughout. The form horse BLACK PLATINUM was alongside as they came off the bend and still together 150m from home it looked as if a titanic battle would ensue. Cleverly ridden by our champion jockey though, Pinot Noir found another gear at that point and looking to have some in hand, she went on to score by three quarters.

The Gr3 Kings Cup over 1600m topped the bill and in what proved to be a real thriller, victory here went to the only female in the race LADY MAGPIE (72). Positioned in midfield as the fourteen runners turned for home, Alistair Gordon’s charge ran on stoutly over the final 400m and in a race where just a neck covered the first four home, it was only in the dying strides that she put her head in front.

A MR78 Handicap over 1400m was next up and here we saw a nice performance from the 4yo BIELORRUSO (70). Now with Dennis Drier, the son of Orpen was taken straight to the front by Alex Forbes and led throughout. He kept on strongly in the straight and with the rest left trailing in the their wake, he went on to beat the regular place getter CHARLES GREIG by three quarters.

Titbits – Formless GATE CRACKER was running on nicely when a runner up to French Reef in the maiden event over 1400m and is clearly on the upgrade.  Favourite AL SHIBA was again beaten with every chance when a runner up in the maiden 1600m.  Lightly raced DRUM SCORE caught the eye running on nicely from off the pace when third in the race won by Bielorruso.


Coasting To Victory

Kenilworth 23rd March: The easiest victory in Cape Town on Wednesday was undoubtedly that of recent maiden winner LEEWARD who came home smoking in the Juvenile Plate over 1400m. Always handy, Joey Ramsden’s charge only took up the running 200m out. She quickened very nicely at that point and soon clear, went on to score by five with some in hand.

The stable of Joey Ramsden were also on the mark in the maiden event over 1800m when the ultra consistent Silvano filly, CATAPULT opened her account. Confidently ridden by Glen Hatt, Catapult sat in midfield during the early part of the race. She didn’t get the clearest of runs when asked for her effort 400m out, but once seeing daylight she responded gamely. She struck the front at the distance and went on to score very comfortably from the Jet Master filly SHIMMERING JET.

Also worthy of note on this card was the performance of LADY VAR in winning the Juvenile Plate over 1000m. Soon up handy, Darryl Hodgson’s charge raced prominent throughout. She was ridden to lead shortly after passing the 200m marker and went on to win comfortably from the easy to back PINK MARTINI by two and a quarter.

Titbits – COASTING AVALANCE quickened nicely late when completing a hattrick in the MR78 Handicap over 1600m and looked to win with a bit in hand.



Vaal 24th March: In the main the results at the Vaal have been horrendous in recent meetings and with Thursday’s action on the turf being one of those desperate affairs where all of the races are low grade handicaps (including the maidens), there was more bad news to come. Indeed, the only favourite to oblige was DILY DELIGHT (28) who did the business for the near bankrupt locals in the MR62 affair over 1000m. Given a typically determined ride from the hard working Sherman Brown, Dilys Delight steadily cut through the field over the final 400m and in what proved to be a real thriller, she only got up in the dying strides.

The biggest upset on the card, and there were a few, was the victory of FIERY (5) in the maiden qualified handicap over 1200m. Freely available at 66/1 on the off, the daughter of Bezrin was soon up handy. She was asked to take up the running shortly after passing the 200m marker and kept on strongly in the closing stages of the race to fend off the rallying 18/10 favourite SPERO MELLIORA by a neck.

The not so lucky last was a MR62 affair over 1400m and here another major upset was to be had when the 50/1 shot ARCTIC BEAR (32) gained her second career victory. Racing for the first time since joining Lucky Houdalakis from Natal, the daughter of Black Sam Bellamy was taken straight to the front by Louis Nhlapo and led throughout. She was always three lengths or so to the good, and never looking like stopping, she didn’t surrender an inch of her advantage on the run to the line.

Titbits  – Runner up A KIND OF MAGIC cut through the field like a knife after racing in the rear in the workrider’s maiden event over 1200m, but quite simply had too much to do.


Top speedratings for this weekend include:

Race 1: No Qualifiers
Race 2: (2) Kings Troop 74
Race 3: (6) Command Officer 9 (EW)
Race 4: (3) Rochelle 16
Race 5: (10) She Wolff 49 (NAP*)
Race 6: (1) Celtic Fire 86 (nb)
Race 7: (10) Wildhay 82
Race 8: (7) Slumdog Oscar 56
Race 1: (14) Divide ‘n Rule 22
Race 2: (14) Restraint 29
Race 3: (12) Shopper Challenge 48
Race 4: (6) Wicomico 71
Race 5: (3) Soul Master 70 (NAP*)
Race 6: (5) Captain’s Wild 91
Race 7: (7) Headstrong 86
Race 8: (7) Take Over Target 91
Race 9: (13) The Happy Heart 69
Race 10: (2) Cecilo 50
Race 1: (11) Merry Maiden 8
Race 2: (4) Marvellous Captain 4
Race 3: (5) Willie Gunn 14
Race 4: (2) Bottom Dollar 9
Race 5: (9) Bastille Day 87
Race 6: (1) Covenant 84 (NAP*)
Race 7: (3) Saluki 76
Race 8: (16) Six To Six 50
Race 1: (5) Rave Melody 21
Race 2: (2) Day Of The Duke 23
Race 3: (5) She-Var 19
Race 4: (2) Travel Light 49
Race 5: (2) Tirade 61
Race 6: (6) Wishful Eye 82
Race 7: (6) Zackly 90
Race 8: (3) Zire Special 55
Race 9: (6) Kirov 28

Top rated winners last week included:

First Growth won 10/1
Lady Magpie won 10/1
Beach Beauty won 4/1
Dilys Delight won 3/1
Li’l Abner won 2/1
Catapult won 15/10
Destrier won 1/1
Mina Salaam won 1/5


Captain’s Wild (M De Kock, Gauteng)
Game Over (R Magner, Gauteng)
Home Bru (G Smith, E-Cape)


(Shown in brackets is the number of races run in each category)

Turffontein 21st March
Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (2)   Laurel Canyon
Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (5)  Miss Turbulence
Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)     Merlion
Fairview 22nd March
Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (2)   Duvet
Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (6)  Makzoos
Fastest Long 1900-3600 (0)     No Qualifiers
Greyville 22nd March
Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (2)   Lunar Lee
Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (5)  Bielorruso
Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)     A King Is Born
Kenilworth 23rd March
Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (4)   Lady Var
Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (4)  Coasting Avalanche
Fastest Long 1900-3600 (0)     No Qualifiers
Vaal 24th March
Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (4)   Kings Gold
Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (3)  Come By Once
Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)     Hot Tip

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