Best Kept Secret — bought for R5.25m at the 2016 Cape Premier Yearling Sale — makes her racecourse debut against nine rivals in the second race at the Vaal on Thursday.
Bought by John Magnier, AM Doyle, Mayfair Speculators and Maine Chance Farms, this Captain Al filly is a full-sister to All Is Secret, champion two-year-old filly in the 2011-12 season.
The youngster is trained by Mike de Kock and they have entrusted the filly’s first run to Callan Murray who has recently returned to SA after a short stint in Australia.
De Kock has put Best Kept Secret into a winners race which is a tip in itself and she clashes with Sean Tarry’s recent Turffontein winner, Green Plains. This filly is by Gimmethegreenlight and was bred by the Gary Player stud. There is another Captain Al newcomer in this 1,000m sprint with trainer Diane Stenger introducing Glencassley who races in the colours of Peter White.
Murray could ride a double for the De Kock yard as Aussie-bred Biblical Susan should go close in the seventh race if anywhere near her peak. The daughter of Bernardini has not been seen since November but could still fully extend two-time winner All Over The World and Andrew Fortune’s mount, Shivering Sea.
Craig Zackey has been booked to partner All Over
The World who was chasing a hat-trick when beaten by
Anna Pavlova at today’s track in December.
Muzi Yeni has been riding winners all over the country in recent weeks and he can take the sixth race on Candice Dawson’s runner, Starcraft Prince. This Aussie-bred gelding did not enjoy the smoothest of passages when beaten by Side Show at Turffontein and can recoup those losses over this longer trip.
Alec Laird’s sprinter, Cherokee Grey, boasts a win and three seconds in his past five outings and the son of July winner, Grey’s Inn, looks certain of strong support.
The Tarry-S’manga Khumalo combination is represented by Yankee Captain who is in hot form after consecutive wins at Turffontein and the four-year-old could start favourite.
Trainer Lucky Houdalakis had four winners here a week ago and he sends eight runners to Thursday’s meeting so will be hoping for further success at his home track.
Interestingly, Houdalakis has opted for a drop in class for his lightly raced filly, Brightnumbersix, in the sixth race, but this also means the daughter of Visionaire will have to carry the hefty burden of 62kg.
The three-year-old may well be equal to the task although she is opposed by some consistent older rivals including Inkolo and Khumalo’s mount, Kahlua Rose.
The right bet might be the swinger coupling Brightnumbersix and Craig Mayhew’s filly, Russian Friend. Piere Strydom is an eye-catching jockey booking for the latter.
Ryan Munger, who often rides Russian Friend, has opted to stay with Grant Maroun’s runner, Quintesa, who scored a comfortable three-lengths win at Turffontein on her most recent outing.
Trainer Steve Moffatt has two live runners in Diablo Canyon and Dragon’s Breath in the final leg of the jackpot. Both warrant inclusion in permutations with Bally Swiss and Quatro.
Murray won the final event at Turffontein last Saturday and he has a good chance in Thurday’s ninth race on Michael Azzie’s five-year-old, Spring Steel.
After a disappointing last run behind Celtic Lady, Gimmethemoney is reunited with Strydom who won on the daughter of Gimmethegreenlight in October.