Many questions to be answered at big Turffontein meeting
All eyes will be looking for top performances by Legal Eagle, Return Flight and Blossom
So many questions will be answered at tomorrow’s 12-race meeting at Turffontein, which makes it arguably the most intriguing so far this year.
- Will seven-year-old Legal Eagle be able to crown an outstanding career with a fourth consecutive win in the HF Oppenheimer Horse Chestnut Stakes or will he find Soqrat — four years his junior — too smart in the Gr1 race?
- Just how good is Hawwaam, who is at unbackable odds for the SA Derby? Mike De Kock is on record as saying “he can take on the best in the world” so the Silvano colt is expected to give Gavin Lerena an armchair ride.
- Will Return Flight stay the 2450m of the SA Oaks, or is it significant that jockey Lyle Hewitson has opted for stablemate, Second Request?
- The Horse Chestnut honours the Oppenheimers’ huge contribution to the sport, so victory for Mary and Jessica Slack’s home-bred filly, Blossom, in the Oaks would be a fitting result.
- Can another Mary Slack-owned and bred filly, Gin Fizz, recoup losses in the Pretty Polly Stakes after being beaten at odds of 1-4 last time out?
With Anton Marcus riding in Dubai, Lyle Hewitson partners Legal Eagle for the second time in the Horse Chestnut Stakes and victory for the ageing gelding would bring the roof off at the city track.
However, Aussie-bred Soqrat showed his class in the Cape Guineas, and bookies may have got their sums right in quoting Mike De Kock’s three-year-old as the ante-post favourite.
Stablemate Cascapedia has drawn in pole position and will have her supporters, yet the suspicion is that the two years younger Soqrat will have her measure.
Tilbury Fort beat Cascapedia in the G-Bets Summer Cup but is now five kilos worse off with the Irish-bred mare, so looks unlikely to confirm that form.
Return Flight’s pedigree suggests the filly may find the Oaks trip so far, which leaves Blossom and Second Request as the ones set to battle for the R468,750 first prize.
Nevertheless, Seville Orange, a daughter of Duke Of Marmalade, trained by Lucky Houdalakis, looks overpriced at her odds of 28-1. She’s done this column proud this term and the recommendation is to take her in swingers with Blossom and Second Request.
Three up-and-coming juveniles — Frosted Gold, Twilight Moon and Cavivar — look set to fight out the finish of the first leg of the Pick 6, the Protea Stakes, over 1,100m.
Although she’s taking on the boys, Cavivar may be able to turn the tables on the revised weight terms — she’s three kilos better off with Twilight Moon and two with Frosted Gold.
Tomorrow is the Dubai World Cup meeting at Meydan racecourse, and French raider, Call The Wind, looks worth an interest in the Dubai Gold Cup over 3,200m.
1st Race: (2) Chouette (1) Crucreek (5) Take My Word (10) Just My Luck
2nd Race: (1) Duke Of Swing (2) Stockbridge (8) Silver Spectrum (9) Glitter Path
3rd Race: (3) Gin Fizz (2) Fly Away (1) Emerald Tiara (7) Palace Of Dreams
4th Race: (7) Cavivar (1) Frosted Gold (6) Twilight Moon (4) Look To The Sky
5th Race: (1) Chimichuri Run (4) Russian Prince (6) All At Once (3) Mighty High
6th Race: (9) Soqrat (1) Legal Eagle (7) Cascapedia (3) Tilbury Fort
7th Race: (3) Blossom (2) Second Request (5) Seville Orange (1) Return Flight
8th Race: (1) Hawwaam (2) Zillzaal (6) Duke Of Spin (3) Atyaab
9th Race: (11) Sunshine Silk (6) Wonderous Climber (10) Ilitshe (2) Walter Smoothie
10th Race: (6) Tamarina (1) Sylvan On Fire (3) Jet Start (9) Insignis
11th Race: (7) D’Arrivee (2) Pilou (4) Pietro Mascagni (5) Cashel Palace
12th Race: (6) Fire And Rescue (7) Aurora Australis (4) March To Glory (3) Norland