Horse Racing Cheltenham Racecourse, Cheltenham, Britain - March 14, 2019. Picture: REUTERS / PAUL CHILDS
Horse Racing Cheltenham Racecourse, Cheltenham, Britain - March 14, 2019. Picture: REUTERS / PAUL CHILDS

Paul Peter is setting a fast pace in the trainers’ championship. He landed a five-timer at Turffontein on Saturday and should have more success at the city track on Tuesday.

It is debatable who had the biggest grin on their face last Saturday night — Peter after his five wins or Norwich City manager Daniel Farke whose side beat champions Manchester City in the English Premier League.

Peter will be particularly pleased that his mare Promise beat the hot favourite from the Mike de Kock yard in Saturday’s eighth race and there could be an action replay in Tuesday’s first race.

After an excellent debut, the De Kock stable will be confident of Arnica Montana justifying favouritism, but Peter’s runner Date Palm also ran well on her first appearance and the three-year-old boasts an excellent pedigree.

Date Palm, a R250,000 buy as a yearling, is by Flower Alley out of the mare, Milk And Honey, who won five races including the grade 3 Acacia Handicap.

Unfortunately, both Date Palm and Sean Tarry’s runner Latin Opus, who returns from a long break, are drawn in the nearby Rand Stadium which makes their task more difficult.

Peter’s fifth race runner Heart Stwings is also badly drawn, but the filly has run well in each of her three starts and is likely to be sent off favourite.

Nevertheless, it might be worth taking on Heart Stwings with Gary Alexander’s recent course winner Animal Lover. There was lots to like about the five-year-old’s performance and the important factor is that she is well in at weight-for-age with the favourite.

At this early stage of the season, three-year-olds should be getting 9kg from their older rivals over Tuesday’s distance of 1,600m. Alexander’s runner is getting only 2kg.

Muzi Yeni teams up with St John Gray’s six-year-old Sammi Moosa, who is 1,5kg better off with Animal Lover this time. Whether this will be enough to turn the tables remains to be seen.

Another three-year-old taking on his elders is Peter’s Gimmethegreenlight gelding Lighthearted, who takes on eight rivals in the first leg of the jackpot. Though the year-older Sean Tarry runner African Rock should run well, Peter’s runner could still complete his hat-trick.

Hidden Agenda is another runner bidding to make it three wins in a row, but Scott Kenny’s charge is now eight years of age and may battle to concede weight to his younger rivals.

Trainer Candice Dawson saddled two winners at Turffontein on Saturday and her second race runner Miss Tycoon makes plenty of appeal with just 52kg on her back. The filly will be ridden by Warren Kennedy who won on the daughter of Elusive Fort at the Vaal in July.

Only six runners will face the starter in this 2,600m marathon and both Factor Fifty and Il Mondo will have their supporters. The first-named might find it tough giving 9kg to Miss Tycoon.

Champion trainer Sean Tarry has provided many of Kabelo Matsunyane’s 60 career wins and the youngster should go close on Matloob in the final race on the card. The four-year-old son of Silvano has only had two career starts and could make a winning handicap debut.

Corrido, yet another horse who has played his part for the Peter stable in 2019, should be in the mix and will jump from pole position. He could edge out Powered Beauty and Matloob’s stablemate Electromagnetic.


1st Race: (10) Date Palm (9) Arnica Montana (2) Latin Opus (3) Tiki Taka

2nd Race: (4) Miss Tycoon (1) Factor Fifty (6) Il Mondo (3) Cranberry Crush

3rd Race: (6) Balletto (4) Wisteria Walk (3) Soul Of Wit (7) Excalibur's Return

4th Race: (3) Lighthearted (4) African Rock (2) Hidden Agenda (5) Miyoshi

5th Race: (5) Animal Lover (7) Heart Stwings (6) Sammi Moosa (4) Fortuna Doro

6th Race: (2) American Indian (5) Fact (4) Indy Ice (3) Dromedaris

7th Race: (3) Rocky Path (5) In The Jungle (6) Prince Of Promise (1) Jagesa Jagesa

8th Race: (10) Matloob (3) Corrido (1) Powered Beauty (8) Electromagnetic