Music To The Ears

Clockwatcher's column to 9 Jan

Fairview 7th January

Pillar To Post

They raced in Port Elizabeth on Friday where victory in the opening Juvenile Plate over 1000m went to the well supported newcomer ROYAL TRIBE. An entrant in the prestigious listed Juvenile Stakes at Kenilworth on Met Day, Royal Tribe got away well when the gates opened and raced up with the pace throughout. FOREST BLADE challenged strongly when the tempo quickened 400m out, but Royal Tribe was always doing it comfortably and looking to have a bit in hand, he went on to score by a length and a quarter.

The stable of Alan Greeff were also on the mark in the MR80 Handicap over 1000m when the speedy MISS VAR registered her fourth career victory. Out of the pens with her usual zest, Miss Var was very quickly three lengths clear. She kept on determinedly all the way to the wire and although the favourite CAPTAIN’S COVE ran on stoutly at the business end of the race, she still had three quarters of a length to spare at the wire.

The afternoon’s feature event was the listed Lady’s Bracelet over 1600m and here a major upset was to be had when the lesser fancied of Alan Greeff’s two runners ILLUMIERE landed the spoils. Freely available at 20/1 on the off, Illumiere was taken straight to the front by Gavin Venter and led throughout. She was always in command and although the well supported favourite OCEAN OF TIME ran on strongly from off the pace, she went on to score very comfortably by a length and three quarters. One to look out for next time from this race is SARAH EM who finished third. Returning from a five month layoff here, Grant Paddock’s charge ran on stoutly from the rear and did very well to get within two lengths of the winner.


OXFORD DON showed promise earlier. He was returning from a three month break in the MR73 Handicap here and ran on well after not getting the clearest of runs.

Kenilworth 8th January

Mum’s The Word

The first of the afternoon’s three feature events to be run was the Gr1 Paddock Stakes over 1800m and here a bit of an upset was to be had when EMERALD COVE landed the spoils. Allowed to drift right out to 20/1 from 10/1 at the track, Justin Snaith’s charge was always handy. She was ridden to lead shortly after passing the 200m marker and with the benefit of first run, she held on to beat the running on Summer Cup winner FLIRTATION by three quarters.

The biggest upset in the feature events came when MYSTIC MOON landed the listed Politician Stakes over 1800m. Freely available at 40/1 on the off, Greg Ennion’s charge raced fifth during the early part of the race. The rapidly improving NYSEAN BOLT was the first to make a move in the straight and when that one struck the front 200m out, he looked to have done everything right. Mystic Moon quickened nicely at that point though and after striking the front 100m later, he went on to score comfortably by a length and a quarter.  One to look out for next time from this race is BASTILLE DAY who finished fourth. Glen Puller’s charge battled to get a run when the race began in earnest 400m out and was finishing best of all.

The Gr1 Queen’s Plate topped the bill and here we saw a very smart performance from the heavily supported favourite MOTHER RUSSIA. Backed throughout the day into 18/10 from 3/1, Mike De Kock’s charge, as per usual, was soon in touch with the leaders. She moved up smartly when the pacemaker BLUE TIGER began to run out of gas early in the straight and put her head in front 300m out. She quickly went a couple of lengths clear and although TALES OF BRAVERY ran on stoutly from off the pace in the closing stages of the race, he was unable to reduce the deficit.


JACK BAUER won the maiden event over 2000m very easily despite not getting a run until late.

Recent maiden winner CODE ROCK ran on well from the rear in the listed Politician Stakes over 1800m and was only beaten three lengths.

Borrowdale Park 8th January

Flashy Numbers

Race two in Zimbabwe on Saturday was a MR64 Handicap over 1000m and here we saw another nice performance from the unbeaten LI’L ABNER. A seven length winner in the maiden ranks on his only previous racecourse appearance, Kirk Swanson’s charge was always handy. The speedy PRUSSIAN HERO set the pace and as they approached the 300m pole was showing no signs of stopping. Li’l Abner was always travelling well though and when asked for an effort 100m later, he quickly took command. Li’l Abner won well again and is clearly one to keep tabs on.

A graduation event over 1450m was next up and in what proved to be a real thriller, victory here went to the lightly raced CAD’S ALLEY. Sent off a strong favourite at 9/10, the son of Kitalpha raced prominent throughout. The joint second favourites MARAUDING LADY and JUST JUDE both threw down a determined challenge over the final 300m and in a breathtaking finish Cad’s Alley only got the better of both by the narrowest of margins.

The afternoon’s feature event was the Champion Fillies Stakes over 1600m and as expected victory here went to the Lisa Harris trained FLASHING NUMBERS. Confidently ridden by Quinton Riddle, the 1/3 favourite was content to guard the rear for most of the journey. Stable companion MRS BUCKET was the first to make a move in the straight and on striking the front 300m out, she had gained a very useful advantage. Flashing Numbers responded quickly when given rein though, and with the rest now some ten lengths adrift, she got up nicely late to win going away. Flashing Numbers has now won seven of her nine starts.


SAGRAMOR was cramped 400m out when attempting to start his run in the MR75 affair over 1300m.

Turffontein 9th January

Easy Feature Wins

Sunday’s action took place on the inner track where we saw an impressive performance in the opening maiden event over 1600m from the lightly raced 3yo HIMALAYAN HILL (19). Backed into 5/1 from 10/1 at the track, Alec Laird’s charge was a little slow into stride and as a result she soon found herself positioned at the back. She was easily ten lengths adrift of the leaders coming off the strip and at that stage was looking very unlikely to place let alone win. Once given rein by Danielle McCreedy though, she fairly flew and after striking the front at the distance, she drew clear nicely late to score by two. Himalayan Hill won very well here and is clearly one to keep tabs on.

The first of the afternoon’s two feature events to take place was the listed Sea Cottage Stakes over 1800m and here we saw a smart performance from the Ormond Ferraris trained TARA’S SON (55). Freely available at 16/1 on the off, the son of Tara’s Halls raced close up in fifth for most of the journey. The much more fancied THE RAJ was the first to make a move in the short home straight and struck the front 400m out. Tara’s Son was already on his heels at that stage though and after he in turn hit the front 250m from home, he easily drew clear.

Another to win in very good style on this card was BULSARA (89) who registered his fourth career victory in the bill topping Gr3 London News Stakes over 1800m. Sent off second favourite at 7/2, Gavin Van Zyl’s charge was always in touch with the leaders. He struck the front early in the straight and although the nibbled at GALANTHUS chased hard over the final 300m, he ran out a very easy winner by four.


ARCOLA toyed with the opposition when winning the MR89 Handicap over 2600m.

Top speedratings for this weekend include:-


Race 1: (18) Mogok’s Maiden 20

Race 2: (9) Lasaro 15

Race 3: (6) Smart Play 22 (EW)

Race 4: (4) Forever Casey 30 (EW)

Race 5: (8) Crown Colony 49

Race 6: (12) Revealing Belle 57

Race 7: (4) Great Heart 88

Race 8: (5) Nino’s Rambo 59


Race 1: (1) Midnight Cat 23

Race 2: (13) Phantom Fighter 13

Race 3: (2) French Miss 29

Race 4: (2) Alan’s Pride 32

Race 5: (3) Tropical Bloom 15

Race 6: (8) Joe Pike 72

Race 7: (1) Trail O’Gold 50 (NAP*)

Race 8: (17) Carina Coleman 58

Race 9: (4) Casey Da Lady 77

Race 10: (2) News Hub 17


Race 1: (5) Fort William 3

Race 2: (1) Count Express 83

Race 3: (2) Place D’etoile 17

Race 4: (4) Dancewiththedevil 71

Race 5: (1) Moroccan 86

Race 6: (10) Wicomico 63

Race 7: (2) Super Boy 32 (NAP*)


Race 1: (1) Alberts Vigilance 1

Race 2: (8) Sweet Aria 7 (NAP**)

Race 3: (4) Fast ‘n Famous 8

Race 4: (8) Six Blue Notes 47

Race 5: (10) Bingo Stingo 47

Race 6: (10) Royal Magic 43

Race 7: (1) Bluemambo 45 (nb)

Race 8: (2) Mister Gone 21


Race 1: (2) Do It My Way 33

Race 2: (8) Ruby Wedding 8

Race 3: (3) Victory Serenade 24

Race 4: (1) Sayadaw 86

Race 5: (11) Polo 60

Race 6: (4) Snazzy Jazz 51

Race 7: (8) Delightfull Diva 66 (NAP*)

Race 8: (9) Right Royal Man 44

Top rated winners last week included:-

Epursimuove won 9/1

Bielorruso won 9/2

Kabamba won 9/2

Preposterous won 9/2

Opening Night won 22/10

Princeton 2/1

Just Tiger won 18/10

Exclaim’n’exclude won 7/20


Bastille Day (G Puller, W-Cape)

Code Rock (G Kotzen, W-Cape)

Flashing Numbers (A Harris, Zimbabwe)

Himalayan Hill (A Laird, Gauteng)

Sarah Em (G Paddock, E-Cape)


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

Fairview 7th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (5)   Miss Var

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (3)  Big Daddy

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (0)     No Qualifiers

Kenilworth 8th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (2)   Gimmethegreenlight

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (7)  Mother Russia

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)     Jack Bauer

Borrowdale Park 8th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (5)   Auvergne

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (4)  Cad’s Alley

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (0)     No Qualifiers

Turffontein 9th January

Fastest Sprint 1000-1300 (1)   Skirmish

Fastest Middle 1400-1800 (7)  Captive Action

Fastest Long 1900-3600 (1)     Arcola

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