Growing influence of Ralphs Racing will delight Bidvest boss
Ralphs Racing main trainer Candice Dawson makes her mark
As CEO of Bidvest Group, Lindsay Ralphs holds one of the most important business positions in the country keeping an eye on the 300 or more companies the group owns or has holdings in.
At the same time, the businessman will be keeping tabs on his passion for horse racing and will be delighted that Ralphs Racing is making waves in the sport.
Ralphs has not been shy to invest in quality thoroughbreds and his main trainer Candice Dawson is making her mark against tough rivals. She has benefited from her time with four-times champion trainer Geoff Woodruff.
Dawson saddled two winners on Durban July day at Greyville in 2018 and had another success at the big 2019 July meeting with her useful performer Infamous Fox. The son of Foxwedge has been entered for the Gauteng Summer Cup.
The Randjesfontein trainer will be able to report to Ralphs that she is bullish on the prospects of the three-year-old Promiseofamaster. The son of Master Of My Fate shaped well in his four starts last term and finished a creditable third behind Astrix in last Saturday's seventh race at Turffontein.
Another progressive sort owned by Ralphs is the Trippi filly California Cool. The daughter of Trippi, who is trained by Mike de Kock, routed her opponents at the Vaal last week.
Ralphs’ blue and white colours are likely to be carried to success in Tuesday's second race at the Free State track when Dawson runs the Dynasty filly Machali for the third time. The three-year-old will be ridden by this season's leading jockey Warren Kennedy.
Machali faces modest rivals and the pick could be Queen Of Soul. The Querari filly hails from the stable of Dorrie Sham which has struck form in the past three weeks.
Kennedy has seven booked rides at the meeting and — apart from Machali — he will partner five runners for Paul Peter with Florida Quays attempting to complete a hat-trick in the fifth race.
Bred by Hemel ’n Aarde Stud, the mare is enjoying a successful year and — provided she is not in need of the run after an 11-week break — could notch the fifth win of her career.
Nevertheless, Ancient Spirit, an Aussie-bred mare trained by Johan Janse van Vuuren, won in good style at Greyville four weeks ago and might have the edge in fitness over Florida Quays.
Though only six runners will face the starter, Muzi Yeni’s mount Abelie, as well as Sean Tarry’s runner Cordillera makes this one of the most competitive races on the card.
Callan Murray celebrated his selection for the SA side for the international meeting on November 16 by booting home four winners at last Thursday’s Vaal meeting.
In Tuesday’s opening event, Murray rides the well-bred Captain Al colt Nimitz, who will be out to recoup losses after failing to justify favouritism at Turffontein last time out.
Hopefully the year older Latin Opus — in which this writer owns a leg — will give Nimitz a run for his money and the Pomodoro gelding will have promising apprentice Cole Dicken in the saddle.
1st Race: (2) Latin Opus (10) Nimitz (1) Sell High (5) Semper Fi
2nd Race: (11) Machali (6) Queen Of Soul (1) Doubled Over (8) By Chance
3rd Race: (2) Littlewood (4) Rachel (6) Piccadilly Square (1) Wordyness
4th Race: (11) Irrevocable Dream (1) Ashbaal (7) Hidden Agenda (5) Fired Up
5th Race: (2) Ancient Spirit (5) Florida Quays (4) Abelie (1) Cordillera
6th Race: (4) Mythical Bolt (7) Capetown Affair (2) Aristachus (1) Scoop
7th Race: (2) Nawaasi (8) Swell Time (5) True Charm (4) Fly Away
Eighth Race: (3) Claremorris (4) Queen Of War (6) Phillydelphia (5) Nymeria