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The exciting Wendy Whitehead-trained Princess Ozma (Futura) is the horse to beat in today”s Grade 3 Strelitzia Stakes over 1100m at Hollywoodbets Scottsville.

Whitehead also has runners in the two other Grade 3’s on the day and has a shout in the Poinsettia with Mercury Rising.

Princess Ozma won her debut over 1200m easily.

She was beaten second time out, also over 1200m, by 0,70 lengths. However, on Sunday she is 3kg better off with the winner of that race, Red Roses Too (Captain Of All).

Both of those runs were at Hollywoodbets Scottsville.

Whitehead also felt the big filly did not run her race last time out.

She said, “The pace was not really suited to her. Red Roses Too was outside of her so she raced freely and went flat out the whole way which was not what was intended. In her first race she had cover and finished off really well. I’m quite happy with the race we are in now and hopefully she can get some cover so she can finish her race again. She did have a bit of a wobble in that last race but she might have just put her foot wrong in the going. She came through it sound and well. I did send her back to the farm for a couple of days because, taking into consideration she is almost 17 hands, she does lighten up. She is massive, absolutely massive. She put on a bit of condition on the farm and came back and has been happy and has done well in her training. She sprinted up incredibly well this morning. So it is all systems go with her, she’s doing really well.”

Whitehead is confident there will be speed in the race which will enable Princess Ozma to find the cover she appreciates.

Morgan La Fay (Rafeef) runs for the same owners in the Strelitzia.

She was unplaced in her only start in the maidens but Whitehead said, “She is talented. She is no slouch and her work has been great coming into this race.”

The yard run Sundance Kid (Master Of My Fate) in the Grade 3 Godolphin Barb Stakes over 1100m.

He dead-heated on debut with Rulership (William Longsword) over 1000m but was beaten 8,55 lengths second time out over 1200m and will only be 3kg better off on Sunday with the winner of that race Gladatorian (Vercingetorix).

However, Whitehead said, “His work has been really nice. Last time he was drawn 14 out of 14 and when Don asked him he ducked away from the grandstand so I think we will have a huge improvement from him as he is drawn near the inside this time.”

The decent Mercury Rising (Gimmethegreenlight) was bought into the yard and Whitehead felt she might not be quite at her peak but would still be a big runner in the Grade 3 Poinsettia over 1200m.

Whitehead said, “She had some hard races in Cape Town and Fairview and coupled with the travel and catching a bit of a virus it knocked her back so she was a bit flat upon arrival.”

She would have needed her first start over 1400n and is also now back to her best trip of 1200m.

Whitehead continued, “Her work this morning was outstanding and if she jumps on terms I think she will be a huge runner in this field. She started very slowly in her Fairview run so we have schooled her in the gates a bit and she jumped very well in her first start for us and hope she does again.”

First-timer Let It Snow (William Longsword) in the first over 1200m is the yard’s only other runner on the day and she said, “She will need the outing but will be doing her best work at the finish.”.

Picture: Princess Ozma at Summerveld on Friday morning.