Saturday, 17 November 2018


Cup weight blow for jockeys


Captain And Master deserves another chance and looks hard to beat.

Piere Strydom

In two weeks we have the running of the R2-million G-BETS Summer Cup which is one of the biggest and most prestigious races on the Gauteng calendar. It’s one of those races you want to win so you can include it on your CV, not only from the money point of view but because of its stature.

This year’s race will be particularly tough for a lot of jockeys to get a ride. Coral Fever has done so well of late and his merit rating keeps climbing. As a result, he will carry top weight of 60kg which is the maximum allowed for a Grade 1 race.

As a result, the second top weight is 54.5kg and everything else is lower with 52kg being the minimum. So, from a jockey’s point of view, there will probably be a lot of top jockeys sitting watching from the grandstand as they cannot do the light weight.

I’ve been riding Sabina’s Dynasty over the past few mounts but as she carries 53kg, and that seems out of reach, so I have no chance of riding her.

Obviously, I’ve been looking for the best possible ride I can get at the weights and hopefully a ride comes through and I can get a Summer Cup ride on a horse with some sort of chance. People often ask me why I take the ride if I don’t think I can win. Sometimes you take a ride because it’s better than watching from the stands. Without a ticket you have zero chance.

Racing today is on the Turffontein Inside track. Race 1 is a Maiden Plate over 1200m and you could quite easily begin the day with a winning bet. My selection is Without Limits and from a plum No 1 draw she looks the horse to beat. There is an unraced horse in Super Fine while Seventh Light has only raced once and that was a year ago so they could be the main danger to my selection.

Race 2 is another Maiden Plate and this time it looks a lot trickier but my first selection is Jacko Boy, who is a filly, by the way. She ran against the colts last time and was not beaten by far. For the BiPot include Banana Republic and possibly the unraced Starlighttemptress as the raced runners do not look that strong.

Race 3 is another Maiden Plate with no runners having outstanding form, so you need to go wide. Toastmaster, Myview and Myrrh are my main contenders. All three need to go into the Place Accumulator.

Race 4 is yet another Maiden Plate and none of these horses has strong form. My first choice is Fly Thought who disappointed last time out but on her first run she is the runner to beat. Her danger is Viscountess Vivien who ran pretty well from a wide draw last time out. Others with chances include that filly’s stable companions, Dunas Douradas and Mill Creek.

For the PA include Fly Thought and Viscountess Vivien, and add the other two into the Pick 6. If they are not enough then you probably need the field.

Race 5 is a fillies’ handicap and my original thoughts were that Pretty Ballerina was the right horse. She should enjoy the Inside track and the 200m shorter trip will suit her. But there are so many others with chances. They are Fariha, Cold Cash, Tammany Hall and Noceur.

Pick Pretty Ballerina and two of the others for the PA. For the Pick 6 add in all the others runners but you could also include Waity Katie, Hafla and anything else you might like.

Race 6 is a Middle Stakes with your best handicapped runner, who is Hakeem, holding the advantage. However, in this race there is not much between the best handicapped runners. I will stay with Hakeem as my first choice and I think he could be a hard horse to beat. He is a possible banker but unfortunately he has a bad draw.

Race 7 is an Assessment Plate where your best handicapped horses should come out on top. In this case that role is with Silver Thursday who has not run in 196 days, so she could be in need of the run. The next best handicapped horse is Captain And Master and even though he let me down last time I will give him another chance because if Silver Thursday is not fit enough, he will be the horse to beat. Banker Captain And Master in the PA. You could take a chance and banker him in the Pick 6 but if you believe Silver Thursday is fit enough, you had better put her in.

Race 8 is a fillies’ handicap and Strawberry Pavlova looks the horse to beat as she ran in a feature last time and was not beaten that far. She was found not to be striding out on that occasion and the little bit of rain we had yesterday should help her cause.

Her only danger looks to be Invincible Lady. I rode her a while back and she gave me the impression she could improve quite a bit so the short break could have done her wonders. Banker Strawberry Pavlova in the PA and add Invincible Lady to the Pick 6.

Race 9 is another fillies’ handicap. The main fancies on form have to be Pale Lilac and Samarra but both have drawn badly so for that reason you will need other inclusions. Take the draws into account to guide your selection.

On that basis I will make Elegancia my first selection. Others with solid form are Wings Of Light and All I Got. For the PA include those three with either Pale Lilac or Samarra while all those mentioned need to go in the Pick 6.

Best Bet

Captain And Master

Value bet

Pretty Ballerina

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