GARY Alexander’s stable remains one of the most competitive and professional outfits in the game. They posted four successive wins at Turffontein’s inside track on Saturday to take their seasonal tally to 32 wins, reflecting an excellent 15% strike rate of winners to runners.
Tellytrack’s interviewer Brandon Bailey ran out of superlatives when the fourth winner came around, describing a quad on one day as “a dream for any trainer”.
This was, however, a dream fulfilled perhaps a dozen times or more in years gone by for the Turffontein yard, who has racked up more multiple winners at single meetings than they will be able to remember!
The four-timer was impressive, all the winners won’t stop here and Alexander said: “The string is well, we get them fit. Don’t overlook us, especially in the long-distance races.”
That was perhaps a bit modest coming from someone who has trained Gr1 champion sprinters like Tommy Hotspur, but the Alexanders seem to have predominantly miler-stayers in the stable at present and the results have been versatile.
While master jockey Piere Strydom (Chijmes, Race 4) and leading senior rider Chase Maujean (Saragon, Race 5), both received praise for their respective rides, apprentice Luke Ferraris got Alexander’s highest accolades.
He said: “We’ve worked with (the likes of) Jeff Lloyd, Dougie Whyte, Piere Strydom, MJ Odendaal and Raymond Rhodes, and Luke is from the top drawer. He will hold his own.”
The young Ferraris’ winning pair was General Jackson (Race 2) and Fierce Fighter (Race 3), and the first was particularly impressive. General Jackson skated away for a 5-lenth win and Ferraris said: “He has a lovely action, there will be more wins coming his way.”
Alexander added: “We’ve had some bad luck with draws, but he finally cracked a one draw this time. Well done to Lindi Garlicki of Connemara Stud for a superbly-bred horse.”
Alexander will probably be thinking of bigger things for General Jackson (Jackson out of stakes-winner Rubirosa), who looks progressive enough to take on smarter, while a Durban campaign is on the cards for Chijmes. “He’s only maturing now”, said the trainer about the Summerhill-bred, who looked beaten going through the 400m but won the race by galloping relentlessly when his rivals came under pressure.