The Clairwood holiday programme on Easter Sunday is brightened by a unique race. The Easter Dash will be run over 600m for a stake of R80 000 at level weights. Besides the novelty of the event, it is a very well paid grass gallop for the winner!
The race, open to all horses irrespective of sex and merit rating, has attracted a field of 13 and all runners are set to carry 60kgs. No apprentice claims will be allowed and interestingly the results of this race will not be taken into account for handicapping and statistical purposes.
Cape trainer Ronnie Sheehan must be wishing he had a few more of these races for his now 8yo Isidingo, who was one of the fastest horses seen in recent years.
The son of Divine Act won six races all over 1000m in the Cape, but the problem was that he only stayed about 900m on a good day. Isidingo has not been seen out since October last year, and we assume that he has been retired. The horse handicapped to win Sunday’s event by almost half the racecourse is Dean Kannemeyer’s very smart and classy Cape Royal, a winner of 4 of his 8 starts.
He runs fresh off an unplaced 7,30 lengths finish behind champion What A Winter in the Gr1 Cape Flying Championship at the end of January. Cape Royal will be ridden by Karl Neisius.
Duncan Howells’ miracle warrior Bwana Macube registered his seventh win at the Clairwood circuit on Sunday and should run second, on paper. He will be partnered by Kevin Shea.
Dennis Bosch may hold an ace with the lightning fast Var 3yo filly Cherry Tripper, who has won two races over the minimum trip and has shown some good form to the likes of Via Africa and Franny.
It is great to see Dominic Zaki and Piere Strydom making the trip from Gauteng with the four time winning Jet Master gelding Boeing Boeing. The genius Strydom will no doubt have a plan up his sleeve to beat Cape Royal.
The race, will not form part of the exotic bets as it is being run as race 10 officially, and any quartet carryovers applicable will be run on the ninth race.
While the event is not sponsored, it seems like an opportunity missed not to have run a ‘guess the winning time’ competition amongst racing enthusiasts, just to have created a bit more hype and interest.