Gavin van Zyl’s progressive Pathfork stayer Marchingontogether set up a big bid for Consolation July glory on Vodacom Durban July day when he made it a smart feature double, cutting down past Equus Champion Stayer It’s My Turn to win the R125 000 Gr3 Track & Ball Derby at Hollywoodbets Scottsville on Saturday.
A R23 minimum dividend after the Place Accumulator opener, a handsome R1,1 million Pick 6 pool, lightning followed by a downpour, and a jockey initiated track inspection, was the early story of an entertaining day’s racing in Pietermaritzburg that sadly ended abruptly after the Derby.
The wet weather panel, on appeal from the riders, decided to abandon after the running of the sixth race, in view of an ‘uneven’ surface.
The early jockey concerns were addressed with a shifting of the rail at around the 800m and at least the ‘open’ Derby thankfully went ahead.
And the race belonged to the 4yo Marchingontogether – placed in the Gr1 SA Derby in his classic year and a Hollywoodbets Scottsville specialist – who got the better of the resilient 7yo It’s My Turn by 1,10 lengths in a time of 154,22 secs.
Ridden as usual by Winning Form rider Warren Kennedy, Marchingontogether looks an ideal Gold Cup horse, although he loves the longer run in of the Pietermaritzburg track.
Dean Kannemeyer’s Vodacom Durban July entry It’s My Turn (73-20) ran a cracker in second after hitting the front quite early, while Dark Moon Rising (28-1) lifted the trifecta dividend.
The other two July hopefuls, Eyes Wide Open (4,80 lengths) and Duke Of Spin (15 lengths), would not have raised their respective share prices with the big race selection panel.
Bred by Jagessar Limited, Marchingontogether has now won 6 races with 7 places from 22 starts for earnings of R753 275.
He is by the supremely versatile Sandown Stud-based Irish Champion Pathfork (Distorted Humor) out of the Varsfontein imported Montjeu mare, Souen.