Jockey Zackey works overtime to ride winners
It is fairly accurate to call up-and-coming Gauteng jockey Craig Zackey a "workaholic" as last season he rode in 1,401 races — 50 more than any rider in SA.
The 22-year-old Johannesburg-born youngster had his best campaign to date finishing with 138 winners, which took him into sixth place on the national jockeys log.
Zackey has started the new term in hot form and, while his book of rides at Turffontein on Thursday looks somewhat moderate, he will be hoping Aimee Sweet can produce her best form to win the sixth race.
Trained by Grant Maroun, Aimee Sweet has won twice in 2017 with Zackey in the saddle, but the daughter of Great Britain needs to bounce back from a recent unplaced run.
Aimee Sweet again renews rivalry with Varsity Princess and this daughter of Var should be right in the firing line despite the steadier of 62kg.
Amazingly, jockey Sherman Brown, who rides the majority of Leon Erasmus’s horses, will be climbing aboard Varsity Princess for the first time.
Aimee Sweet and Varsity Princess face another tough rival in this 1,000m sprint in Roy Magner’s Celtic Lady. With Gavin Lerena booked for the ride, she might start favourite.
Zackey has four rides for trainer St John Gray and the pick of the quartet may be Gateway To Heaven, who runs in the final leg of the Pick 6.
Much will depend on whether the filly needs the outing after an 11-week rest. In the circumstances, punters need to include all of Onamission, Lebanese Tractor and Flipflash in their permutations.
Another returning female is Cascapedia, who takes on 10 rivals in the final leg of the jackpot. The daughter of High Chaparral, who won the 2002 Epsom Derby, has not raced since April.
Anthony Delpech flies to the Highveld for just two rides — Cascapedia and Aussie-bred Quick Glimpse in the second — and it will be a surprise if he returns home empty-handed.
Quick Glimpse failed to justify favouritism on her debut in August, but the import will have gained from that experience.