Jet Dark Better Than Ever As Snaith Machine Kicks In
Justin Snaith was said to be having a worrying quiet patch in the build up to the weekend’s racing, but he then showed this had little to do with the well-being of his string by bagging a five-timer at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday.
The meeting might also have signaled the beginning of Richard Fourie’s title chase, as he rode four of Snaith’s winners, although he does have a mountain to climb, being on 46 winners after today’s racing compared to log leader Keagan de Melo’s 90.
The highlight on Saturday was Jet Dark’s effortless victory in the Grade 3 Cape Mile.
Fourie divulged that the yard had not given Jet Dark as much of a break after his Champions Cup win as they had given him last season. Therefore, he is more forward now than he was this time last year.
Jet Dark was doing his best work late on Saturday, just as he had done in his world class performance in the L’Ormarin’s Queen’s Plate back in January.
His performance on Saturday might encourage the yard to run Captain’s Ransom in the Grade 1 Paddock Stakes, where she will defend her crown, rather than take him on in the L’Ormarins King’s Plate, although the public would prefer to see the pair clashing.
IOS Drill Hall Stakes winner Silver Operator stayed on well for a 1,75 length second in the Cape Mile, although at present it would still appear he is best suited to 1400m.
His stablemate Rascallion has never quite lived up to the lofty reputation he had as a young three-year-old, but he would likely have finished third, instead of a 2,95 length fourth, had he not been squeezed out between Jet Dark and Golden Ducat. The incident was caused by Silver Operator hanging outward from the 250m mark and carrying Golden Ducat outward. An inquiry will be held into this incident.
So, it was an encouraging comeback from an injury enforced layoff by Rascallion.
It was also a fine comeback for Golden Ducat from an injury enforced layoff of 18 months.
He finished a 2,75 length third.
Hopefully, this Eric Sands-trained twice Grade 1 winner will line up for the Hollywoodbets Durban July, where he has unfinished business.
Snaith and Fourie also landed the other feature on the day, the Listed Laisserfaire Stakes over 1100m, with Gimmethegreenlight filly Kwinta’s Light. Fourie extracted a sweeping run from off the pace from her and she won by 0,75 lengths carrying 59kg off a 102 merit rating.
Earlier Rockpool (Futura) had stayed on strongly to win fourth time out. He relished the step up to 1600m and got the Snaith/Fourie ball rolling.
The Snaith-trained Pacific Green (Gimmethegreenlight) won a handicap over 1100m under Fourie in a quicker time than Kwinta’s Light recorded, although she was only carrying 55kg.
Furthermore, her time was 0,41 seconds slower than the unbeaten Vaughan Marshall-trained Love In Winter’s time. The latter carried 56kg in a Middle Stakes event and has now won all three of her races.
Snaith’s other win on the day came in the last when Grant van Niekerk led on topweight Running Rifles (Vercingetorix) and cleverly took him to the outside rail in he straight.
The other feature on the day, the Listed Woolavington Stakes over 2400m, saw an enterprising ride from Jabu Jacobs on the Piet Botha-trained lightweight Baratheon, a Millstream Stud-bred Jackson gelding.
The win should have booked him a place in the Summer Cup.
He copped the maximum penalty allowed for a winner of this race of six points, which takes him up to a 107. That will mean he will run in the Summer Cup 3kg under sufferance, presuming the top rated horse, William Robertson, takes his place.
Interestingly, Tarry won the Summer Cup last year with a horse who was officially 4kg under sufferance, i.e. Flying Carpet.
However, a closer look at the latter’s three-year-old form gave him a definite shout at the weights.
There is no such form that can be found for Litigation, but the four-year-old gelding by Greys Inn was always thought to be one who would come into his own as he got older.
However, a possibly more eyecatching Summer Cup preparation run was put in by Litigation’s stablemate Nebraas, who was flying at the finish for a 2,50 length fifth.
He looks to have had the perfect Summer Cup preparation.
William Robertson also stayed on quite well for a 2,40 length fourth. Trainer Corne’ Spies might have gained some confidence about the Rafeef gelding’s capacity to stay the 2000m of the Summer Cup.
Drakenstein have Already Had Eight Individual Stakes Winners This Season
Drakenstein Stud set a new record of 18 individual stakes winners last season and they are on track to breaking that record this season.
Their eight individual stakes winners this season, which is just over three months old, are:
Grazinginthegrass (Philanthropist), Listed Memorial Mile, Fairview turf.
Somerset Maughan (Trippi), Listed Hollywoodbets Settlers Trophy, Hollywoodbets Durbanville.
Santa Maria (Trippi), Grade 3 Hollywoodbets Diana Stakes, Hollywoodbets Durbanville.
Trip Of Fortune (Trippi), Grade 3 Hollywoodbets Matchem Stakes, Hollywoodbets Durbanville.
Charles Dickens (Trippi), Grade 3 Cape Classic, Hollywoodbets Kenilworth.
Sheela (The United States), The Listed The Citizen Golden Loom Handicap, Turffontein Standside.
Jet Dark (Trippi), Grade 3 Cape Mile, Hollywoodbets Kenilworth.
See It Again (Twice Over), Listed Model Man Mile, Hollywoodbets Greyville turf.
Flightline Has Been Retired To Stud
Flightline has been retired to stud following his sensational Breeders’ Cup Classic victory on Saturday.
The four-year-old prevailed by eight and a quarter lengths at Keeneland, maintaining his perfect record of six wins in as many starts for trainer John Sadler.
Flightline did not make his debut until April 2021, but has been on a steep upward trajectory since his initial victory, winning a claimer at Del Mar before going on to secure four successive Grade One triumphs, culminating in the Breeders’ Cup.
His smallest margin of victory was six lengths in the Metropolitan Handicap at Belmont, while his 19-and-a-half-length win in the Pacific Classic counts as his most conclusive success.
Venniker’s First Feature Victory On Do It Again’s Close Relative
Rachel Venniker brought the Michael Roberts-trained Twice Over colt See It Again with a strong run from the back of the field to win yesterday’s Listed Model Man Mile.
The strongly built chestnut was receiving 1,5kg from the Grade 1 winner Canadian Summer and beat her by 1,50 lengths.
He runs in the colours of Nick Jonsson and was bred by Drakenstein Stud.
This was the three-year-old colt’s fourth career start and his first attempt at 1600m.
He is a three-parts brother to the twice Durban July winner Do It Again, being by the same sire out of a Visionaire half-sister to Do It Again.
He looks promising and could progress into a July horse himself.
He has already earned a 104 merit rating.
Great Pictures From Hollywoodbets Kenilworth By Wayne Marks
On-course photographer Wayne Marks caught some gems at the big meeting at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth on Saturday.
The below picture, which could be entitled “Flying Fillies”, is a rarity because it caught all of the runners with their feet off the ground. Kwinta’s Light is on the left and is on her way to victory in the Listed Laisserfaire Stakes over 1100m.
The below picture os of Pacific Green’s win.
Love In Winter remains unbeaten under Corne Orffer (below).
Wendy Whitehead’s double at Hollywoodbets Greyville poly today took her to 17 wins for the season, which puts her in joint third position on the KZN Trainers log.
She has done it at a strike rate of 15.89%.
When jockey Gee Armytage appeared on the TV quiz program Sporting Triangles in January 1988 what was the first question she asked to her fellow contestant, Manchester United and England legend, Bryan Robson?
Answer at the bottom of the newsletter.
Vaal Classic Fields
Today’s Question Answer
Armytage asked Robson, “And which sport are you involved in?”