As is the case in all sports, horseracing has its own idioms and one of them is that while a horse might lose its form, it does not lose its ability.
That is unquestionably the case with Naarah. The daughter of Vercingetorix was being touted as a superstar in the making after starting her career with two impressive victories.
They were extraordinary wins so it came as no surprise she was sent out a 17-20 favourite to win the Listed Ruffian Stakes over 1000m. But after showing up with the pace for the first 600m, she faded out to end up in fifth place, beaten 3.75 lengths by Under Your Spell.
So perplexing was the performance that she was examined by the course veterinarian who could find nothing wrong.
Her next start, in the Grade 3 Protea Stakes over 110mm, was even more disappointing because this time she went down 6.50 lengths, again to Under Your Spell.
After that Naarah was given a rest during which she joined the Roy Magner yard. He appeared to find the cure for whatever was ailing the filly and when she made her return in a Graduation Plate last month, Magner made no secret of the fact he believed she was back to her best.
He was spot on, and the now three-year-old filly came away to score a facile 1.40-length victory over Alabama Anna.
She is back in action in Race 2 on the Vaal Classic track on Thursday, a MR 90 Handicap over 1000m for fillies and mares, and her winning form is expected to continue.
Gavin Lerena was aboard for her last win, and he will be back in the iron again.
And the scratching of main danger Bella Chica makes Naarah an even better bet.
That makes Big Eyed Girl the runner for the Exacta. Trained by Johan Janse van Vuuren and carrying only 54kg, this three-year-old daughter of Vercingetorix has claims despite a big step up in class.
Jack Milner’s selections
Race 1: 3 Pink Legacy, 4 Red Hot, 1 Gilda Gray, 2 Fort Snow
Race 2: 3 Naarah, 6 Big Eyed Girl, 5 Muleta, 1 Before The Dawn
Race 3: 3 Orgetorix, 4 Scottadito, 1 Global Player, 7 Pomodoro Hills
Race 4: 1 Lion Of The Desert, 6 Funky Music, 9 Noble Striker, 5 Euro Cent
Race 5: 2 Sergei, 1 Bureau Des Legende, 5 Timbavati River, 3 Flinders Range
Race 6: 1 Run As One, 3 Orus Apollo, 9 Irish Rain, 10 Capetown Affair
Race 7: 4 Corvette Captain, 1 Touch Of Fate, 2 Edward Longshanks, 5 After Hours
Race 8: 3 Singfosusie, 1 Seemyvision, 4 Verinova, 5 Lucy English
Race 3 No 3 Orgetorix
Race 8 No 3 Singfosusie
Race 2 3×6