Picture : S’Manga Khumalo infamously refused to ride William Robertson in the Gr 2 Topbet Mike O’Connor Jo’Burg Spring Challenge last year after he had felt amiss going down to the start and Muzi Yeni took over to win the race (pictured above). Khumalo gets a chance to make amends on the classy Corne Spies-trained Rafeef gelding over the same Turffontein Inside 1450m course and distance tomorrow in a Pinnacle Stakes event. (JC Photos)
Charl Pretorius (Business Day)
Last year’s Spring Challenge winner, William Robertson, returns to the inside track at Turffontein on Saturday for a Pinnacle Stakes event over 1,450m.
He is following the same preparation pattern for the grade 2 feature as he did in 2022.
Trainer Corné Spies said on Thursday: “He is fit and well, he has 62kg to shoulder which is never easy, but he has a good draw and this is a race we believe he can win.”
William Robertson (62kg) was beaten into second on September 10 last year by bottom weight Forever Mine (52kg).
If we were to see a similar result, the one that could trouble him this time is likely to be Tony Peter’s talented, Running Rifles, whose 50.5kg could make a telling difference.
(William Robertson is 2kg under sufferance with the best weighted Marigold Hotel, while Running Rifles is 4kg under sufferance plus Muzi Yeni carries 0,5kg overweight, but the latter could still be ahead of the handicapper such is the way he has taken to the Highveld. Gr 2 WSB Gauteng Guineas winner Eye Of The Prophet is 2,5kg under sufferance with Marigold Hotel but this is alleviated by the 1,5kg claim of Rachel Venniker).
Gavin Lerena is a significant jockey booking for Robyn Klaasen’s Tanganga in race 8 over 1,200m. Tanganga and Galla Vanting (race 9, 1,000m) are both due for competitive runs and present punters with a value double on the day.
1st Race: (1) Zoom Lady (3) Best Intentions (7) Chasing Happiness (6) Cocktail Girl
2nd Race: (4) Courageous (3) Shampimpi (1) Call To Glory (9) My Lady Soul
3rd Race: (6) Dungeons (5) Sage King (2) Moola Man (1) Wolffs World
4th Race: (1) William Robertson (9) Running Rifles (3) Eye Of The Prophet (8) Another Level
5th Race: (6) Arividicio (11) Emporium (5) Mo Jive (2) Global Impact
6th Race: (6) American Grayson (5) Rule Book (8) Over Two You (1) Battleground
8th Race: (6) Tanganga (3) Ampersand (2) Viva De Janeiro (4) Lulu’s Boy
9th Race: (4) Galla Vanting (1) Kalahari Blue (3) Ambrym (8) Iventrix