Preview from the Hong Kong Jockey Club website regarding todays Daily News 2000, where of course TAB is comingling into their massive pools.
Interestingly they make Kommetdieding ‘the runner they will all have to beat’.
G1 – 2000m – Turf
|1||Russian Rock||Looked a star in the making when winning the Grade 1 Cape Guineas, beating Linebacker by 0.2 lengths. However, he has not produced the same form since, finishing unplaced in the Cape Derby. He ran fourth in the KZN Guineas and on that basis looks held by both Linebacker and Kommetdieding.|
|2||Dr Doolittle||Contested the Grade 1 SA Classic over 1800m at Turffontein in March but was well beaten. Very well bred and is a runner who could improve markedly. He won his last start well and if he should live up to his reputation, has the ability to run into the places.|
|3||Rascallion||Has performed well in Graded races but has been living in the shadow of stablemate Linebacker, having finished behind him in the Cape Guineas, and Cape Derby. He also looks held by Kommetdieding on their run in the Grade 3 Politician Stakes. Disappointed when fourth in Scottsville.|
|4||Flying Carpet||At one stage he was the highest merit rated maiden in the country, but he has gone on to win two races since. Put up an excellent run in the Grade 1 SA Classic over 1800m at Turffontein when a 2.75-length fourth behind Malmoos. There look to be stronger competitors but is capable of running into the places.|
|5||Shah Akbar||From the powerful stable of champion trainer Sean Tarry, this colt has run against some of the best three-year-olds in the Grade 1 SA Classic and SA Derby but the closest he got was four lengths back in the Classic. Does look well held on form but as a frontrunner, could be suited to Greyville and could run into the places.|
|6||Linebacker||Has an outstanding record in Graded races, placing second in the Grade 1 Cape Guineas before winning both the Grade 1 Cape Derby and the Grade 2 KZN Guineas. Proved he was at the top of his game with his last Guineas win. Massive runner.|
|7||Second Base||Honest performer who found Malmoos too good for him in all three legs of the SA Triple Crown. However, he turned it around in the Grade 1 Premier’s Champions Challenge when producing a flying finish to run Got The Greenlight to 0.75 lengths after suffering interference early in the race. Jockey arrangements suggest stablemate is preferred.|
|8||Kommetdieding||Very talented colt who lost his unbeaten record when third behind Linebacker in the Grade 2 KZN Guineas over 1600m at Greyville. However, he suffered serious interference on the turn and dropped to last but flew in the closing stages to get beaten 2.1 lengths. Will prefer this distance and could very well be the runner they will all have to beat.|
|9||The Gatekeeper||Highly regarded by trainer Justin Snaith but has yet to live up to his reputation. If he does improve as he matures could be a contender. On current form he looks held by Linebacker but a victory in this race would secure him a spot in the Durban July, the country’s most prestigious race.|
|10||Copper Mountain||Ultra-consistent runner who has only finished out of the places once in 10 outings – in the Grade 1 SA Classic at Turffontein. He did bounce back when a 0.5 length second behind Got The Greenlight in the Grade 1 Horse Chestnut Stakes over 1600m. That makes the distance a question mark but he is not without a winning chance.|
|11||Full Blast||This gelding comes into this race as the lowest rated runner and although a two-time winner from five starts, they were over 1200m and 1400m respectively. Did try 1600m last time but finished a well-beaten second in a MR 88 Handicap. In his favour is that both his wins were on the Greyville turf track, but he does look an optimistic entry.|
|12||Infinite Wonder||Lightly raced runner who won on debut and followed that up with a 2.5 length fourth in his next start. Was well beaten in the Grade 2 KZN Guineas when a 6.65-length seventh behind Linebacker. Has only raced over 1600m but on breeding should enjoy this distance. The widest draw is not in his favour.|