Eye On The Prize

Clockwatcher's column to 14 Jan

Eye On The Prize

Clairwood 9th January

Drew Clear Easily

There were a number of very easy victories at the garden course on Sunday, but none more so than that of EXCLAIM’N’EXCLUDE (83) who came home smoking in the Conditions Stakes over 1200m. Deep in the red at 7/20 on the off, Charlie Laird’s charge led throughout. He was always in command and although the lightly weighted REBELLIOUS STREAK chased hard, he drew clear easily over the final 250m to score by six.

Another to win very easily on this card was EPURSIMUOVE (22) in the MR70 affair over 2000m. Allowed a soft lead from halfway, the son of Galileo was easily six lengths clear as the thirteen horse party turned for home. The remainder were almost all in a line as they fanned out across the track 400m from home, but neither could make any impression from there onwards.

EPIC STYLE (25) in the maiden event over 1450m was the best bet on the card for many and she didn’t let down her supporters. She was a little slow into stride when the gates opened, but despite that, she was always in touch with the leaders. Her only serious rival in the betting market PENNY LANE was the first to make a move in the straight and struck the front 250m out. Epic Style had been gradually reeling that one in from the 400m marker though and with the rest well beaten, she went on to win going away by a length and a half. Epic Style won well and clearly has more to come.


Newcomer TOP OF THE CHOCS won the Juvenile Plate over 1000m going away.

Flamingo Park 10th January

Unbeaten At The Track

A maiden event over 1200m got proceedings underway in the Northern Cape on Monday and here we saw a nice performance from the deposed favourite CLIENT KING. Allowed to ease out marginally at the track (22/10 out to 5/2) as money came in for BROADWAY NITE (3/1 into 22/10), Client King raced fifth during the early part of the race. He quickened well from halfway and after striking the front 400m from home, he kept on strongly on the run to the line to beat the easy to back pacemaker BLACK PORT by a length and a quarter.

The easiest victory on the card was recorded by KEEN SMARTLY who opened her account at just the second time of asking in the maiden juvenile plate over 1000m. Taken straight to the front by Francois Naude, the daughter of Strike Smartly led throughout. She was always in command and only having to ridden hands and heels in the closing stages of the race, she went on to score very comfortably by three and three quarters.

The non black type Flamingo Park Sprint over 1200m topped the bill and here victory went to the Clinton Binda trained OPENING NIGHT. Sent off a joint favourite at 22/10, Opening Night was soon up handy. He ran on best of all at the business end of the race and went on to score easily after striking the front 200m out. Rated much higher on turf than he is on the sand, Opening Night is now unbeaten in three starts at this circuit.


Lightly raced DUBAI DESTINATION ran on very nicely in snatches in the maiden event over 1200m and can improve plenty.

Run out of it late by a more fancied stable companion in the maiden event over 1000m, CELEBRATE SPRING is coming to hand nicely and should go one better soon.

Vaal 11th January

Following The Form

They raced on the sand on Tuesday where the easiest victory on the card was recorded by SIBER CENTENARY (17) who opened his account in the maiden event over 1600m. Backed throughout the morning into 22/10 second favourite from 9/2, Erico Verdonese’s charge was soon up handy. He was asked to take up the running as they approached the 400m marker and fairly cruised clear in the latter stages of the race to score by seven.

A MR68 Handicap over 1600m was next up and with TURKEY SHOOT (49) having easily accounted for the aforementioned Siber Centenary by five and a half when shedding his maiden tag at this circuit last time out, it was not surprising to see him shorten in the betting into 4/1 from 11/2. Confidently ridden by Fanie Chambers. Turkey Shoot sat third for most of the journey. He was ridden to lead shortly after passing the 300m marker and went on to beat the favourite KING’S DESTINY, and the hattrick seeking SON OF THE BURG, fair and square.

A Pinnacle Stake over 1000m topped the bill and here a bit of an upset was to be had when the 5yo GOLD GAME (76) registered his fourth career victory. Freely available at 16/1 on the off, the son of Choctaw Ridge raced in midfield early on. The much more fancied SECOND WORLD was the first to make a move and struck the front 250m out. Gold Game was already on that one’s heels at that stage of the race though and when he in turn put his head in front 75m later, Second World could find no extra.


STAR OF DESTINY finished best of all when winning the MR90 Handicap over 1450m.

Kenilworth 12th January

Quick Double

The locals got off to a rough start in Cape Town on Wednesday when the newcomer TRINITY HOUSE (30) opened her account. Freely available at 20/1 on the off, Joey Ramsden’s charge raced in midfield during the early part of the race. Both she and the nibbled at PRINCESS VICTORIA ran on stoutly from halfway and with the rest some six lengths in arrears, Trinity House got the verdict by a length.

The 4yo MACCHIATO (61) was strongly fancied to win the MR79 Handicap over 2500m and he didn’t let down his supporters. Allowed to ease out to 13/10 from 9/10 at the track as money, somewhat surprisingly, came for his stable companion GOLDEN RUSE (8/1 into 4/1), Macchiato was always handy. He was clearly cruising as he moved through to take up the running 200m from home and with some in hand, he went on to score very easily by two and three quarters.

A MR88 Handicap over 1000m was next up and here it was nice to see the 5yo MOONLIGHT GAMBLER (74) complete a quick double. Allowed to ease out to 7/2 from 5/2 on course, Moonlight Gambler, as per usual, was content to amble along in the rear during the early part of the race. Only four lengths covered all with the exception of the speedy pacemaker ISIDINGO though, and when given rein 400m out, he soon began to make headway. Both HOWDOULIKEMENOW and the ultra consistent TRIBAL also finished well and in what proved to be a real thriller, it was only by a neck that Moonlight Gambler got the better of both.


TOUCHE was again running on nicely in the maiden event over 2000m and should go one better soon.

Running on from the back in the maiden event over 1600m, SILKY LILY didn’t get the clearest of runs and can improve plenty.

Vaal 13th January

Mountain High

Thursday’s action took place on the turf where sent off as if unbeatable to win the opening maiden juvenile event over 1000m was the Var filly LA VOLTA (11/20 into 3/10). She got away well when the gates opened and soon at the head of affairs would have been expected to lead throughout. The friendless newcomer VARIOMETER (20) had raced close up in second though, and when that one threw down the gauntlet 250m out, La Volta could find no extra. Variometer went on to score very comfortably by four and a quarter and is clearly useful.

One who did land the odds after finding heavy support was the recent Dingaans fourth placed runner SNOWDON (70) who did the business in the progress event for 3yo’s over 1400m. Backed into 5/10 from 8/10 at the track, Ormond Ferraris’ charge was always positioned close to the pace. He was ridden to lead shortly after passing the 400m marker and with plenty in hand, he comfortably accounted for the running on DOMINO PLAYER by two and a half. Now a winner of four of his five career starts to date, Snowdon won well here and clearly has a bright future ahead of him.

In terms of distance, the easiest victory on the card was recorded by GANGS OF NEW YORK (19) who opened her account in the not so lucky last, a maiden event over 1400m. Nibbled at on course into 8/1 from 10’s, Paul Peter’s charge adopted a change of tactics here and went straight to the front. She led by just a length and a half for most of the journey, but once given rein, she easily drew clear. Gangs Of New York won well and clearly won’t be stopping here.


Newcomer SOUL MASTER ran on very nicely to win on debut in the 1200m maiden event.

INDIGO AMIGO came from the rear to win the MR75 Handicap over 1600m.

Top speedratings for this weekend include:-


Race 1: (12) Sweet Embrace 21

Race 2: (1) Mainbrace 77

Race 3: (1) Waging War 53

Race 4: (9) News Talk 45

Race 5: (2) Kaslee 56

Race 6: (6) Test Act 95

Race 7: (4) Another Mistral 52 (EW)

Race 8: (15) Rochelle 16


Race 1: (4) National Executive 20

Race 2: (4) Desert Warrior 23

Race 3: (6) Pegasus Road 23

Race 4: (6) Torch Singer 42

Race 5: (12) Tobrusky 56

Race 6: (13) Turkey Shoot 63

Race 7: (6) Swordsmith 75

Race 8: (14) Mastende 61

Race 9: (9) Stamping Ground 49


Race 1: (1) Trinity House 30

Race 2: (1) Tigers Eye 8 (NAP*)

Race 3: (5) Katsamba 17

Race 4: (8) Wild ‘n Free 67

Race 5: (6) Cool River 58

Race 6: (3) State Blue 78 (EW)

Race 7: (6) Bobby Bear 72

Race 8: (1) Earl Of Surrey 99

Race 9: (7) La Beau Jolais 51

Race 10: (7) Jeanne D’arc 16


Race 1: (1) Sweet Silvano 26 (NAP*)

Race 2: (2) Silent Jet 24

Race 3: (1) Foxtrot Baby 18

Race 4: (2) Street Cred 60

Race 5: (12) Rev Counter 51

Race 6: (3) Beaches 67

Race 7: (15) Greet The Day 54

Race 8: (15) Please To Progress 62

Race 9: (2) Sacred Saracen 22

Race 10: (1) Day By Day 31

Borrowdale Park

Race 1: (2) Sagramor 16 (NAP*)

Race 2: (8) Royal Landing 20

Race 3: (6) Sharp Texan 56

Race 4: (9) Daisy A Day 14

Race 5: (5) Ephraim 31

Race 6: No Qualifiers

Race 7: (1) Vincent 33

Race 8: (8) Predictress 2

Top rated winners last week included:-

Silver Forest won 12/1

Hot Summer Night won 15/2

Moonlight Gambler won 7/2

Drift Along won 16/10

Mr Black Tom won 14/10

Lizzie Arden won 12/10

Hollywoodboulevard won 1/1

Wieland won 13/20


Celebrate Spring ( P Miller, N-Cape)

Exclaim’n’exclude (C Laird, Natal)

Snowdon (O Ferraris, Gauteng)

Variometer (L Goosen, Gauteng)


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

Clairwood 9th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (4)  Cindy Cee

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (5)            Princeton

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)    Epursimuove

Flamingo Park 10th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (6)  Up To Casey

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (2)            Bay Of Gibraltar

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)    Western King

Vaal 11th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (4)  Candy Cotton

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (4)            Star Of Destiny

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (0)    No Qualifiers

Kenilworth 12th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (3)  Moonlight Gambler

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (3)            Because U Said So

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (2)    Macchiato

Vaal 13th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (3)  Ask Me

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (6)            Snowdon

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (0)    No Qualifiers


Macchiato – Kenilworth

Macchiato ran out a very easy winner at Kenilworth last week.

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