Mothers & Masters

This afternoon..the Gr3 Recall East Cape Derby at Fairview

True Master

Masterful. Justin Snaith’s True Master is on the up and appears to have plenty in his favour in Sunday’s Gr3 East Cape Derby at Fairview

The R350 000 Gr3 Recall East Cape Derby run at Fairview this year, sees the annual Western Cape 3yo invasion. If the history books are any reliable guide, then be with the proven masters Snaith, Ramsden and Bass. The 2400m event is the highlight of an exciting Mother’s Day programme on Sunday.

Traditionally run at Arlington, the 2013 Recall East Cape Derby weekend changes venues, having been moved to the newly revamped Fairview Racecourse in Greenbushes, Port Elizabeth.

While work on the Polytrack continues and is expected to be finished by the end of July, it is pleasing to note that all building renovations have been completed.

Statistics can be pretty misleading, but they seldom lie if taken at face value. Over the past eight years only the ill fated, but brilliant, Lizard’s Desire (2009) managed to carry the flag for the locals.

If we consider the Snaith representatives as genuine visitors, then the locals hold a marginal numerical advantage with six runners against the five visitors.

Snaith Challenge

But there won’t be any safety in numbers for the local boys. Justin Snaith’s trio includes the beautifuly bred Jet Master colt True Master as well as the consistent Skippyjon Jones who has been in PE for close on a year already.

The engagement of Piere Strydom to ride True Master is the major initial drawcard, although as a winner of 4 of 7 starts, there is little wrong with his form either.

Save for an unplaced effort in the Breeders Cup Politician Stakes on L’Ormarin’s Queen’s Plate day, where he was reported to have made a respiratory noise, True Master has not been beaten since shedding his maiden at the end of October over 1400m at Kenilworth.

Lightly raced and essentially largely unexposed, he is quite an exciting sort who would not be out of place further up the coast in the Champions Season arena. If he wins this, he is bound to be headed that way.

The Jones’

Juan Nel, who runs the Snaith PE satellite operation, has done well with the Black Minnaloushe geding, Skippyjon Jones. No real star, but consistency personified, this little guy has not been out of the money at his last six starts, and ran a nice third last time to Burlaine Forest in the Derby Plate, after running handy. He made a respiratory noise there, which hopefully would have been remedied by Sunday.

Snaith’s Lundy’s Liability gelding Parker returned to action three weeks ago in an MR 88 Handicap over a mile at Durbanville, after having run unplaced in the Investec Cape Derby on Met Day. A powerful galloping sort, he ran on well to stay on 1,85 lengths off Ze Kaiser. That one confirmed the form with a solid third placed finish behind Readytogorightnow in the Gr3 Winter Guineas at Kenilworth on Sunday.

Ramsden Raider


Exciting. Joey Ramsden’s Argentinian bred Coltrane should enjoy the stamina test of the Gr3 East Cape Derby

Joey Ramsden’s yard is on song and he won this event for the Joostes in the boardroom with a fellow called Vengence in 2011. He send s out the Argentinian bred Coltrane for the same owners, and this promising gelding has won 2 of his 9 starts and looks headed for better things.

He is exceptionally well bred, being by Giant’s Causeway out of a Rainbow Quest mare who is a half sister to sire Count Dubois and who only raced twice, but was placed over 2800m at one of those starts! Coltrane is fit and bang in form, and could take this step into the limelight if traveling well.

Mike Bass takes his chances with the Go Deputy gelding Nearctic Dancer, who made a quiet return after an unplaced Derby effort in the same event where Parker finished third.

Nearctic Dancer looked quite exciting after winning his post maiden start, and he could well appreciate the test of ground here. He runs out of the new Bass PE satellite yard, now managed by the vastly experienced Gavin Blake.

Greeff Duo

Alan Greeff’s Way Clear and Placido are the two highest rated runners in the race. Both are well drawn, but try the trip for the first time and need to be taken on trust. Stuart Randolph travels from KZN to partner Way Clear, who has run two cracking seconds at his most recent starts.

He was slow away in the East Cape Guineas, before staying on to be beaten by the top class Ottimo and then charged through to run second to Burlaine Forest in the Derby Plate.

He gave the impression that he relished the 2000m there and is now 2kgs better off with the Bremner runner. Placido was a very forward youngster who won 4 of his first ten starts over shorter distances.

He only managed a fourth behind Burlaine Forest last time and though he had excuses after being cramped for galloping room, he did not show the signs of a horse looking for 2400m. That said, he is by the solid stallion Miesque’s Approval out of a Badger Land mare who won six races up to 2400m.

Ladies Three

Yvette Bremner saddles the duo of the talented Burlaine Forest and the Right Approach gelding Just Swell. Burlaine Forest has often been regarded as one of the top 3yo’s in the Eastern Cape, and the son of Tamburlaine has shown an electrifying finishing burst in his 4 wins from 7 starts.

He won a particularly good race last time out in the Derby Plate when beating Way Clear by a half length in receipt of 2kgs. He also had Skippyjon Jones and Placido (2kgs better now) behind him there.

Warren Kennedy rode an outstanding race on Burlaine Forest last time, and he sticks with him, which should promote confidence in his chances. Just Swell is an interesting runner.

A winner of 1 of his 9 starts, he has shown little to suggest that he will stay this trip, and his dam was a sprinter. He ran on steadily in a 1400m Allowance Plate last time and Francois Herholdt gets aboard again.

Grant Paddock saddles Red Silvano for Paul Do Carmo, and the gelding has his third run in Port Elizabeth. He shed his maiden at his fifth start over the Vaal 1700m, but his two local starts have shown a weakness in the finish. He will need to improve dramatically to have any say in a race of this strength.

Inn Favour

Mitch Wiese sends out the Greys Inn gelding Boucher’s Inn, who is a winner from 14 starts. The engagement of the solid 2,5kg claiming apprentice Luyola Mxothwa will bring some relief, but he still looks to be up against it on the handicap. Boucher’s Inn improved last time to run on strongly for third place behind King Air, but still needs to show that he can go this trip.


While the handicapper may prove us wrong, the record books suggest that the Capetonians will hold the upper hand. True Master is our first choice to beat Coltrane. That will make good a little outstanding matter of the 2011 Derby, when Snaith had to bite his lip as Lourenco Marques was placed second behind the Jooste’s Vengence. Some lovely needle and a great race in prospect! Just don’t forget to spoil Mum!

On Friday the Listed Dahlia Plate heads the eight race programme, and the fun continues into the night with the Racing Association holding their ever popular cocktail party. Traditionally a weekend of racing with a charitable aspect, Nazareth House in Port Elizabeth has been selected as the beneficiary for this year.

They’re set to host an auction during the cocktail party which will include bidding on the runners of Sunday’s feature race, the Recall East Cape Derby (Gr3), a fun event which stirs up plenty of interest. The weekend highlight on Sunday is the nine race programme which gets under way at 12.15pm and features the Gr3 Recall East Cape Derby.

Aside from an impressive racing line up, race goers will have access to food and craft stalls, live entertainment and there will be a plethora of kiddie’s activities available for the little ones. To celebrate Mother’s Day, all moms on track will receive a special gift and a number of lucky draws will also take place throughout the day.

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