The five-year-old Ideal World gelding Donald McDonald made it a second win in the last three runnings of the Listed Michaelmas Handicap over 1900m at Hollywoodbets Greyville today for the combination of Gavin van Zyl and Warren Kennedy as he just held on from the evergreen Dennis Drier-trained nine-year-old Silvano gelding Wealthy.
Van Zyl and Kennedy won it two years ago with Blackball.
On Pattern Committee advice it was ensured the event would be won by a horse who at least ran to a 90 merit rating by inserting a 52kg benchmark relating to a 90 merit rating.
The only change this caused to what the weights would normally have been was 86 rated (84 nett) Enjoy The View had to carry 53kg instead of 52kg.
Love The View was not made to work to get to the front from a wide draw and Donald McDonald, who went forward from a draw of five, looked likely to be caught one wide.
However, Kennedy managed to slot in front of Gentleman’s Wager on the first turn and the latter had to switch off his heels and was instead the horse caught one wide without cover.
Enjoy The View set slow fractions and moved outward coming off the final turn, allowing Donald McDonald a straight run to the line.
He ran on resolutely but late in the race Wealthy, who was relishing the rain softened ground, began making serious inroads on his inside. Donald McDonald held on by the skin of his teeth. The staying on pair Sir Michael and Native Tongue were next best and Love The View was fifth.
Lyle Hewitson has not been travelling this season as he awaits the greenlight for his departure to Japan but his agent Deez Dayanand booked him a few rides at this meeting and he was immediately on the board with the well-bred William Longsword gelding Coin Spinner.
This long-striding Tony Rivalland-trained three-year-old, who is out of a full-sister to the Grade 1 winners Solo Traveller and Redberry Lane, finished second on debut back in April and was still green in his comeback last time out after a five month layoff but did show pace and made good late progress from a wide draw that day. On Sunday, Hewitson used Coin Spinner’s pace to get to the front at a good clip and his big action did the rest as he kept going to reverse form with Pashtunwali, who was second favourite and was beaten 1,60 lengths. Joint third favourite The Brief finished third.
In the second race the progressive Dennis Bosch-trained Var speedster Varvacious was allowed to drift to 50/9, as Irish Belle shortened to 20/7. Varvacious jumped well from a good draw under S’Manga Khumalo and made Irish Belle, under 4kg claimer Rachel Venniker, work hard to get to the front. Varvacious duly made short work of Irish Belle in the straight and stayed on well to win by 1,30 lengths from the 25/2 shot Captain Ariano with the 20/1 outsider Flashy Kaitrina next best.
In the third race the heavily backed Gareth van Zyl-trained Oratorio filly Bay Breeze, shortened from 25/11 to even money favourite. The tall three-year-old filly was brought from near the back and stormed home to give Khumalo a quick double. Sparkling Flame stayed on well for her eighth successive place, beaten 2,30 lengths, and Roy’s Rocker was next best.
The fourth was a 2200m maiden and the Yadav Singh-trained Alado gelding Extract confirmed he was enjoying the recent step up to these distances and gave Khumalo a treble.
In the fifth race over 2200m Gareth Wright bought the Andre Nel-trained Silvano gelding Chewbaca to the outside and his sustained run saw him getting the better of the favourite Blue Planet.
In the sixth over 1900m the pole position-drawn Duncan Howells-trained Traffic Guard mare Aquae Sulis ran on strongly down the inside to win comfortably under Thabiso Gumede.
The last race saw Athandiwe Mgudlwa producing a strong finished from the Gareth van Zyl-trained Captain Al colt Mister Who to win by 0,90 lengths from outsiders Prince Tyrion and Purple And Green.