Picture: 123RF
Picture: 123RF

Champion jockey Lyle Hewitson will have mixed feelings about his first visit to Singapore. He captained the SA side to a reasonable showing in the PGI Challenge but was hit with a four-day ban by the Kranji stewards for careless riding.

Hewitson got in hot water when riding in a race at Kranji on Sunday and his ban will run from October 3 to 7. Luckily, it does not affect the R750,000 World Sports Betting Heritage Handicap, which has been rescheduled for October 13.

The SA team, which included Muzi Yeni and Aldo Domeyer, finished in third place in the Challenge with 102 points. The victors were Australia with 119 points, shading the UK side, which amassed 117 points.

Yeni ran second in the first of the Challenge races, but it was Cape-based Domeyer who fared the best of the SA jockeys as he steered his mount, Safeer, to victory, beating the former Singapore favourite, Joao Moreira. This win assured Domeyer of the Victor Ludorum prize for the most successful jockey at the meeting and his points tally saw him beat UK rider Rab Havlin and Australian Kerrin McEvoy.

Hewitson will be back in the country — Yeni will not — for Thursday’s eight-race programme at Turffontein where he is booked for seven mounts, four for the Sean Tarry stable.

The pick of the Tarry quartet could be the Trippi filly Hafla, who takes on six rivals in the fifth race over 2,000m. Although the four-year-old is trying this longer trip for the first time, she was noted finishing well over 1,600m when narrowly beaten by Flowing Gown.

Candice Dawson has her string in fine form and recent winner Royal Utopia should go well in the hands of Gavin Lerena. However, whether the mare will be able to concede 6kg to Hafla remains to be seen.

Mike de Kock slaps the blinkers on Mambo Model, who rates an each-way chance, as does Piere Strydom’s Arte, who is enjoying a successful year.

Another good ride for Hewitson should be Forest Express, who looks certain to start favourite in the sixth race. This Tarry inmate has been placed in her past three starts and now goes 2,600m for the first time.

Denis Schwarz is getting good rides for the Gary Alexander stable and he made all the running for a recent win on Brand New Cadillac. He teams up with the son of Traffic Guard again on Thursday and the gelding has no stamina limitations.

Considering his pedigree — a son of Dynasty out of the Summer Cup winner Flirtation — Big Parade has proved disappointing, but he could be the joker in the pack.

Schwarz has another promising ride in the seventh race in which he partners the grey Tapenzee for the Mike and Adam Azzie stable. The son of Tapit ran well behind Storm Warning last time out and can notch up another win by beating Highlander and War Legend.

Hewitson rides Bankable Teddy for the first time in the fourth race, and the six-year-old gelding is overdue a visit to the number one box following three consecutive second placings.

He faces a useful rival in Kilrain, with the son of Dynasty fitted with blinkers for this 2,000m contest. Strydom’s mount, Sabina’s Dynasty, also enters the reckoning although Paul Peters’s mare has not raced since the end of July and might need the outing.