The Grade 3 Final Fling Stakes was conceived as the last opportunity for fillies and mares about to go to stud to battle it out for a last bit of black type to give their sales catalogue entries a smidgeon more prestige.
Judging by the line-up for the 2021 running at Kenilworth on Saturday, the paddocks of the nation’s breeders are about to receive an infusion of racy blood.
All nine runners are multiple winners and most are in top form as they near retirement.
Trainer Justin Snaith has made this 1800m race his personal fiefdom over the years and this renewal looks likely to add to his remarkable record. He saddles three horses who could be vying for top slot on the bookmakers’ boards.
Retained rider Richard Fourie partners five-year-old British import Sleeping Single who has been running well in elite company for many months. However, the last of her three victories was 714 days ago, so she might have lost her finishing edge and younger rivals could have the advantage here.
Three-year-olds Rain In Newmarket and Major Attraction are the ones likely to do the job for Snaith. The latter recently completed a hat-trick, while the former comes off a run of three runner-up placings.
Amont the non-Snaith candidates, Glen Kotzen’s Musical Glitch and Mike Stewart’s Pretty Betty appear to pose the main threats and are essentials for Quartets.
A companion piece race for sprinting fillies and mares is the 1200m Champagne Stakes, which is also packed with good form.
Snaith filly Phil’s Dancer and Brett Crawford’s Capitana are the ones that stand out in this Grade 3. They boast exceptional course-and-distance records and are hard to separate.
If these two races are not enough to satisfy racing fans, a Pinnacle Stakes, Race 5, also boasts a high-class contest. Snaith’s Nexus will surely bounce back from his Durban July disappointment, but won’t have everything his own way with the likes of Rockin’ Ringo and Sabina’s Prodigy in tremendous nick of late.
9 Kalahari Ferrari, 1 Allaroundtheworld, 4 Bonanza, 5 Captain Mike
9 Nippy Winter, 11 Rio Supremo, 3 Cio Cio San, 6 I’m In Love
7 Vida Futura, 3 Full House, 2 Forever Bill, 6 Sky God
11 Ocean Warrior, 1 World So High, 4 Grand Escape, 2 Universe Boss
1 Nexus, 4 Rockin’ Ringo, 7 Sabina’s Prodigy, 6 Retro Effect
6 Rain In Newmarket, 7 Major Attraction, 9 Musical Glitch, 8 Pretty Betty
2 Capitana, 3 Phil’s Dancer, 5 Iris, 7 Fusillade
2 Izapha, 5 All About Al, 4 T’challa, 6 Moon Rock
2,3,5,6,7 x 1,2,4,11 x 1,4,7 x 6,7 x 2,3 x 2,4,5 (R720)
3,9,11 x 2,3,7 x 11 x 1,4 x 6 x 2 x 2,5 (R36)
Best: Race 3 No 4 White Fang
Value: Race 7 No 3 Castle Durrow
Best: Race 7 No 4 Sir Michael
Value: Race 6 No 8 Magical Midlands