Gavin Lerena has chance of quartet of winners at Vaal
Good prospects on Ubiquitas, Benguela Cove, Sister Light and Call Me Master
Jockey Gavin Lerena, who will pilot Met favourite Kommetdieding at month end, travels to the Vaal on Thursday for four rides and could possibly win on all of them.
Lerena, 36, ran second on Kommetdieding in Saturday’s Queen’s Plate and most pundits believe the four-year-old will appreciate the step up to 2,000m in the Met.
In the latest Met betting, bookmaker Lance Michael quotes both Kommetdieding and Rainbow Bridge at 9-2, Linebacker at 5-1, Double Superlative at 11-2 and Jet Dark at 13-2.
Lerena’s first Vaal mount is Ubiquitas who races for trainer Candice Dawson who scored with Just Be Nice at the Free State track on Tuesday.
Ubiquitas is a daughter of Futura and she signalled she wouldn’t be in the maiden ranks for long with a second behind Watching Closely last month. The chief threat is likely to be S’manga Khumalo’s mount Sing Girl Sing.
Paul Peter’s runners always rate close scrutiny and the Turffontein trainer is represented by Tuulestar who has already recouped her R20,000 purchase price. The filly will sport blinkers for the first time.
Lerena then has to wait until the fifth race when he resumes his partnership with runaway maiden winner Benguela Cove. Trainer Erico Verdonese does well with his small string of horses and this daughter of Querari now ventures into handicap company for the first time.
The opposition includes Peter’s two-time winner Goddess Of Light but the right horse for the exacta could be the Mike de Kock inmate Florentine. The daughter of Ideal World did not enjoy a trouble-free run when beaten by Freed From Desire just before Christmas.
In the seventh race, Lerena is sure to fancy his chances on Sean Tarry’s well-bred Sister Light. From Lammerskraal Stud, the Visionaire filly has chalked up a win and three seconds in her four starts.
Southern Blaze is an interesting opponent as Stuart Pettigrew’s colt easily won his second race last month and should have more to offer.
Leading Lad and Tyrone Zackey’s recent winner Flashy Apache both rate each-way chances in this novice plate with the latter dropping back to 1,600m after scoring over 2,000m.
Perhaps Lerena’s toughest ride is Call Me Master who is just about drawn in the nearby Vaal River in the eighth race. Nevertheless, if this disadvantage can be overcome, Robbie Sage’s runner can contest the finish as this is a wide-open 1,800m contest.
The likely favourite here is Ashley Fortune’s filly Dame Of Flames, as this Drakenstein Stud-owned and bred filly has shown ability in each of her five outings. In contrast to Call Me Master, she is drawn in pole position. Perhaps the swinger coupling the Sage and Fortune runners could reward punters.
Liverpool Legend is battling for her third win and, like Call Me Master, has a shocking draw to overcome. In her favour is that leading jockey Warren Kennedy has been booked for the ride.
1st race: (5) Ubiquitas (4) Sing Girl Sing (1) Tuuletar (3) Night Lily
2nd race: (5) Ideal Wolff (11) On The Verge (13) Go Dream Machine (8) Stunning Kitten
3rd race: (7) Moonshiningthrough (9) Right Choice (1) Bequest (6) All Of Me
4th race: (1) Snow Symphony (6) Samoa (9) Sabrina Fairchild (3) Dancing Dora
5th race: (8) Benguela Cove (3) Florentine (9) Goddess Of Light (2) Elusive Woman
6th race: (5) Sybaris (2) Elusive Swann (6) Indus Knight (4) Willow Lane
7th race: (8) Sister Light (2) Southern Blaze (3) Flashy Apache (1) Leading Lad
8th race: (2) Call Me Master (7) Dame Of Flames (10) Liverpool Legend (16) Saffron Rain
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