When Randall Simons climbs aboard Mike de Kock’s newcomer Big Parade at the Vaal on Thursday, memories are sure to come flooding back for the Gauteng jockey.
Big Parade is a son of the mare Flirtation, who gave Simons his first grade1 victory when beating Mother Russia in the 2010 Sansui Summer Cup.
Flirtation raced in the colours of owner Costa Livanos and so does Big Parade who is a son of top stallion Dynasty.
Two of Dynasty’s progeny, Lady In Black and Eyes Wide Open, gave the Highlands Stud-based sire a further boost when winning the Thekwini Stakes and grade1 Premier Champions Stakes at Greyville in July.
De Kock’s regular rider Callan Murray rides another first-timer Tango Man in the same race as Big Parade makes his debut, but Simons’ mount looks the one to be on.
If both debutantes fluff their lines, the runner likely to take most advantage is Red Indy.
Paul Peter has his team in hot form and his four-year-old Plum British will bid to complete a hat-trick in the fifth race.
Simons could also go close in this race as he partners Blue Diamond Road for trainer Alec Laird. The Mogok gelding has been the model of consistency all year.
An interesting runner in this 1,600m contest is Geoff Woodruff’s Aussie import Super Stratum. Although the five-year-old has not raced since April, it might be wise to include him in exotic bets.
Mike Azzie and his son Adam are now sharing the stable training duties and they will be hoping their three-year-old filly Mrs O can make it two wins from two starts in the sixth race.
Although the final leg of the Pick 6 looks a trappy handicap, punters should get a good run for their money with a win and place bet on Corné Spies’ runner, Cold Front.