Picture: istock
Picture: istock

Surcharge, one of the leading fancies for Saturday’s Gauteng Guineas at Turffontein, has eased in the market after trainer Stuart Pettigrew’s star three-year-old drew a wide barrier in the 1,600m race.

"Surcharge was a pretty firm second favourite at 7-2, but we’ve pushed him out to 4-1 after he received a bad draw," said book maker Lance Michael on Monday.

He has Paul Peter’s unbeaten three-year-old Majestic Mambo as the 22-10 favourite for the race, with Alistair Gordon’s KwaZulu-Natal raider Monk’s Hood third favourite at 6-1.

Pettigrew, who trains at Randjesfontein, certainly picked a bargain when owner Ian van Schalkwyk bought the colt for R200,000 at the 2016 National Yearling Sales in Germiston.

Surcharge can boast five wins and one placing from his seven starts to date. His most recent success came in the grade3 Tony Ruffel Stakes at Turffontein and, provided he runs well on Saturday, will then contest the second leg of the Triple Crown, the SA Classic.

The stable of Michael and Adam Azzie is enjoying a successful season. They are in ninth place in the national trainers log, and they will be hoping for a bold effort from their runner Greek Fire in the Guineas. Michael has the Dynasty colt on offer at 13-2. Greek Fire, a R3m buy as a yearling, was bred by John Slade and is a half-brother to top stayer Wavin’ Flag.

Jockey Anthony Delpech was again in hot form at Turffontein last Saturday, which is good news for fans of Fish River for Saturday’s supporting feature, the Gauteng Fillies Guineas.

A daughter of Canford Cliffs trained by Mike de Kock, Fish River won her last race and runner-up San Fermin gave the form a boost when scoring at the Vaal last week.

Similar to the Guineas, it is probably a Paul Peter runner, Folk Dance, who will pose the main threat to Fish River.

Michael has the two talented females as the 5-2 joint-favourites for the race.

Bass Racing, one of the biggest stables in the country, secured the top lot of R200,000 at Sunday’s Cape Yearling Sale at the Mistico Equestrian Centre in Paarl.

The youngster that caught the eye of the Bass team was a colt by Soft Falling Rain out of the three-time winning Western Winter mare Minerva. The yearling was consigned by Wilgerbosdrift Stud.

The sale at the picturesque Cape venue produced an aggregate of R4,075,000 with 72 of the 86 lots catalogued sold.

The average declined to R56,500 compared with R60,500 in 2017. However, the median price of R50,000 was an improvement on the 2017 figure of R40,000.