Cousin Casey (Picture: Wayne Marks)
Glen Kotzen said crack Vercingetorix colt Cousin Casey had settled in at Summerveld beautifully since arriving on Saturday.
The colt has taken it easy since his Met fifth-placed finish.
He has just been doing long canters to keep him ticking over.
Cousin Casey did exceptionally well to run a 1,80 length fifth in the Met considering he was caught wide in the early stages and this eventually forced Grant van Niekerk to go to the front, which was not ideal for a horse who is at his best when relaxing off the pace before using his exceptional turn of foot.
Kotzen won the July in 2009 with Big City Life, who started off his SA Champions Season campaign by running second in the Byerley Turk at Scottsville, before winning the KRA Guineas, the Daily News 2000 and the July.
Cousin Casey will take the same route, although he might miss the Byerley Turk over 1400m at Hollywoodbets Greyville on April 2, because Kotzen said it might come too soon.
Kotzen will be hoping the appeal against See It Again’s merit rating of 124 does not succeed because Cousin Casey himself is a 122.
On the Hollywoodbets Greyville poly on Wednesday Kotzen’s big Visionaire gelding Dowser bounced back to win after a disappointing Cape Summer campaign.
Most pundits believed it was the removal of the blinkers that did the trick, but Kotzen said that had nothing to do with it, it was rather the return to the poly, the return to a right-hand track and weaker opposition than he had been facing.
He has always liked Dowser and time will tell whether he can get back on track to being a feature horse.
Meanwhile, Grinkov will be staying in Cape Town to take advantage of the attractive program. He will run in the first two legs of the Winter Triple Crown. He will avoid the Winter Derby, because Kotzen points at his Cape Derby run as proof that he does not stay.
Ameena will be campaigning in KZN. She was injured after winning the Grade 2 Zulu Kingdom Explorer Golden Slipper over 1400m and hasn’t been seen since.
Hold My Hand is another good three-year-old filly who will be campaigning in KZN and the Grade 1 Woolavington 2000 looks the right race for her.
Countdown will be in KZN for some sprint races, including the Grade 1 Golden Horse Sprint.
The Kotzen yard have acquired the former Paul Peter-trained Flying Bull, who is a decent staying type.
Another horse they gave acquired is the 100 merit-rated Lord William.
Kotzen said he would have some good two-year-olds in KZN for the SA Champions season.
These include the proven performers Rascova and Golden Tatjana.