Refined Grace

Sophomore Sprint (L) at Kenilworth on Saturday

Fillies Nursery third Super Elegant commands a very nice turn of foot.

Sophomore Sprint (L) over 1200m at Kenilworth on Saturday

With what is sure to be another very exciting Western Cape season now just around the corner, it’s the 3yo’s that take centre stage at Kenilworth on Saturday. The listed Sophomore Sprint tops the bill where surprisingly only nine of the original 27 entries stood their ground, writes Steve Furnish.

In form trainer Dean Kannemeyer had originally nominated four runners, but only the top weighted Depardieu will take his place.

Cape Nursery winner Depardieu could be anything.


A winner of two of his three career starts to date, this son of Dupont met his only defeat when a half length runner up to the talented Gimmethegreenlight in the listed Betting World Somerset 1200 in April. Gimmethegreenlight has since made the frame in both the Gr1 Golden Horseshoe and Gr1 Premiers Champion Stakes and it is worth noting that Depardieu was finishing strongest of the pair in the Somerset. Depardieu’s only subsequent outing came in the Gr3 Cape Nursery where encountering soft going for the first time, he won going away. His fitness has to be taken on trust having not been seen out since winning that event, but Depardieu could still improve considerably and Dean wouldn’t have let him take his place here if he didn’t think that he would do himself justice.

Soweto Slew

Joint highest rated with Depardieu by the official handicapper is the Oratio colt Soweto Slew. One of two representatives from the stable of Justin Snaith, Soweto Slew has been keeping very good company. He too ran the very useful Gimmethegreenlight to just half a length last season, and that on 1kg worse terms than Depardieu had done. Darryl Hodgson’s charge receives 1,5kg from Depardieu here and he did show his well being when running a fair fourth to Captain Harry on his return from a three month break just three weeks ago. His two wins have both come over shorter than he races here though, and he has been comfortably beaten in both starts over today’s distance.

Great Fox

The only other runner of the five originally nominated by Justin Snaith to stand his ground is the Victory Moon colt Great Fox. He’s failed to get within 4,9 lengths of the winner in three of his four starts and reported as not striding out last time to boot, he would look to have little chance at first glance. Those three runs were all on soft going though, and in his only outing on good ground he cruised in by four. That win came over today’s course and distance and interestingly, the 2nd and 4th placed runners in that event both came out and won well next time out. Great Fox has a nice galloping weight here and he did make all when gaining his only success. The going is likely to turn up soft on Saturday, but if it doesn’t, he could improve stacks.


Yet to encounter good ground is the Brett Crawford trained Accelero. He won well when making all on debut in May and then showed real guts and determination when holding off the subsequent Winter Juvenile Stakes (L) runner up Final Button over today’s trip next time out. He was comfortably beaten when returning from a nine week break last time out, but it could well be that he needed that run. Either way, he’s sure to strip fitter here and setting off from gate four should be right there when the race begins in earnest.

Blaze Of Fire

The lone raider from outside the Western Cape is the Yvette Bremner trained Blaze Of Fire. He’s done well in Port Elizabeth winning two of his six starts. His two successes have both come over 1000m and usually one to run on stoutly at the finish, he looks sure to appreciate the extra. This son of Victory Moon can still improve plenty, but he is taking a very big step up in class here.

Made Of Steel

The Kabool colt Made Of Steel must have shown plenty of promise early as a 2yo last season as his first scheduled run was to be in the prestigious listed Summer Juvenile Stakes on Met Day. He bolted at the start though, and as a result was withdrawn. Made Of Steel was then taken to Gauteng where despite racing prominent in all three starts, he failed to show his true ability. Indeed, it was only on his arrival back in the Western Cape that he began to fulfill that early promise. Adopting front running tactics, Made Of Steel has since won two from three and he did put in a particularly gutsy effort when rallying strongly after being headed to get the better of older horses over today’s course and distance last time out. Expect a bold effort.

Rainbow Man

As well as Made Of Steel, trainer Vaughan Marshall is also represented by the Mellifont colt Rainbow Man. After opening his account against winners in just his second career start, he too was put into the Summer Juvenile stakes. Reported as hanging in that event though, Rainbow Man was unable to get in a blow and finished well down field. He was also comfortably beaten in each of his two subsequent outings last season, but he did then show considerable improvement on his return to action after a 3,5 month break just two weeks ago. Rainbow Man was pitched in against some very useful older horses in that latest outing and with one of today’s runners Soweto Slew behind him, he finished best of all. If there is to be a major upset here then Rainbow Man could be it. The dark horse.

Final Button

Since being given a typically gentle introduction to racing by his trainer in March, the ultra consistent Final Button has been coming along very nicely. He beat Made Of Steel going away when gaining his only win in May and 2kg better off at the weights with that one here, should confirm the form. Just as effective over a mile, Final Button was only beaten a length and a quarter by Master Mascus in the Winter Juvenile Stakes last time out and is clearly still improving. He should be involved again.

Super Elegant

The only representative of the fairer sex in the race is the Daylami filly Super Elegant. A bit of an enigma, Piet Steyn’s charge commands a very nice turn of foot on her day, as she showed when flying up late to win on debut, and when third to the very talented Trinity House in the Gr3 Fillies Nursery over today’s trip in May. She has been comfortably beaten in her three subsequent outings, but she did again catch the eye when running on particularly well from the rear to take third in the Gr3 Champagne Stakes over 1200m over today’s distance last time out. She receives 6kg from the likely favourite Depardieu here and that could make the difference.

About The Pace

Accelero and Made Of Steel have both proven to be at their best from the front and with both needing to be right there if they are going to earn their first piece of black type, a fair pace can be expected. Depardieu has done nothing wrong to date and could yet prove to be anything. The filly Super Elegant on the other hand is at that the top of her game right now as she showed when finishing best of all in the Champagne Stakes last time out. The runner up in that event Dance With Al got one over the boys when winning the Gr2 Merchants over today’s course and distance last season and in receipt of 6kg from Depardieu the fairer sex could well come out on top again here.

Have Your Say - *Please Use Your Name & Surname

Comments Policy
The Sporting Post encourages readers to comment in the spirit of enlightening the topic being discussed, to add opinions or correct errors. All posts are accepted on the condition that the Sporting Post can at any time alter, correct or remove comments, either partially or entirely.

All posters are required to post under their actual name and surname – no anonymous posts or use of pseudonyms will be accepted. You can adjust your display name on your account page or to send corrections privately to the EditorThe Sporting Post will not publish comments submitted anonymously or under pseudonyms.

Please note that the views that are published are not necessarily those of the Sporting Post.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments



Popular Posts