De Beer’s champion faces tough rivals
The top stables are all represented and one of the leading fancies will be Brett Crawford’s Search Party who is bidding to complete a hat-trick
Gauteng trainer Coenie de Beer will be hoping for some Piere Strydom magic when his champion sprinter Talktothestars takes on the stables of Sean Tarry, Justin Snaith and Brett Crawford in Kyaya Stables Diadem Stakes at Kenilworth on Saturday.
Strydom knows the Scott-Bros speedster well. The gelding’s career tally reads 10 wins from 27 starts. He was voted Champion Sprinter at last season’s Equus awards.
However, an unplaced run last time out at Turffontein at the end of November means many punters will be looking elsewhere for the winner of this 1,200m sprint.
The top stables are all represented and one of the leading fancies will be Brett Crawford’s Search Party who is bidding to complete a hat-trick. Corné Orffer will be in the irons and he will be aware stablemate Gulf Storm (Greg Cheyne) could also have a say in the finish.
Bookies will not be putting up any fancy price about Tarry’s representative, Trip To Heaven, as they are probably still licking their wounds after Legal Eagle’s demolition of the opposition in last weekend’s Queen’s Plate.
S’manga Khumalo will get the best out of Trip To Heaven while red-hot Anton Marcus will partner Red Ray who has not been in action since July.
Whatever the fate of Trip To Heaven, Tarry will be hoping his talented filly Cloth Of Cloud can produce the goods after a long absence in the supporting feature, the Fairview Wines Sophomore Sprint.
Although Cloth Of Cloud has not contested a race since last April, Tarry is a master at bringing his charges back in top fettle to win feature events. If the filly is found wanting, victory is likely to go to the Snaith runner, Bishop’s Bounty.
Two other runners in the reckoning are Dennis Drier’s Hack Green and Lord Balmoral who represents the in-form yard of Vaughan Marshall.
The London News Stakes — due to be run at Turffontein last Saturday but postponed due to rain — will take place at the city track on Saturday.
With Anton Marcus in action at Kenilworth, trainer Geoff Woodruff has had to find a new jockey for Deo Juvente and Chase Maujean has got the call to partner the 2015 Summer Cup runner-up.
Deo Juvente has been entered for the Sun Met for which he is quoted at 40-1. He needs a good run on Saturday to book his place in the final field, to be announced on Monday.
Deo Juvente will need to be at the top of his game as he will have to contend with two useful rivals, Romany Prince from Ormond Ferraris’ stable and the Tarry inmate, Samurai Blade.
Ferraris has booked Gavin Lerena for the ride on Romany Prince while — with Khumalo at Kenilworth — Craig Zackey has got the call for Samurai Blade.