Jack Milner
2 minute read
13 Feb 2017
10:34 am

Have a blonde moment

Jack Milner

British Royale could be second best in open race.

ISSUES. Pure Blonde is talented but his soundness will come under the spotlight in the R250 000 Grade 3 Tommy Hotspur Handicap at Turffontein's Standside track in a night meeting tomorrow.

Based on his long layoff after last year’s Man O’ War Sprint over 1100m at Turffontein, it is fair to assume Pure Blonde is not the soundest of runners. In that Grade 3 race over 1100m at Turffontein on 2 April Alec Laird’s charge finished a 2.15-length fifth behind Bull Valley but was found not be striding out and did not race again until 21 January. In this event, a MR 104 Handicap over 1200m on the Turffontein Inside track, Pure Blonde finished third behind Champagne Haze, beaten just 0.60 lengths.

Tomorrow he lines up in the Grade 3 Tommy Hotspur Handicap over 1000m at Turffontein as long as he is not affected by his second run after a layoff, this son of Kahal, who carries just 52kg, could be the runner to beat.

The four-year-old entire has raced just eight times for three wins and three places and it would be interesting to know how well he could have performed had he been sound.

There is nothing in his form that indicates he will be affected by a second run and in fact, he has won his second start and then won his other follow-up run after a similar layoff.

Muzi Yeni takes the ride. However, this is a very tricky race and there are a number of others with winning chances. British Royale needed his last run when fourth behind Champagne Haze and 1.70 lengths behind Pure Blonde. However, the son of Great Britain showed lots of pace and was only run out of it late.

This is over 200m shorter and he has the speed to run the opposition off their feet. Johan Janse van Vuuren trained gelding is 0.5kg worse off, but that is because of the weight for- age adjustment and theoretically should make no difference. Randall Simons has won on this gelding before and has the ride again.

African Ruler finished second behind Champagne Haze and clearly has the ability to win. However, while two of his six wins have been over 1000m, he is generally better over a little further. Of those wins over 1000m, one was in a Pinnacle Stakes where he was well weighted and the other was earlier in his career when he was not conceding weight to all the other runners.

Paul Peter’s runner has 60kg on his back but will have the services of Gavin Lerena. Percival finished eighth in the Grade 1 Cape Flying Championship but was just 2.75 lengths behind Carry On Alice.

However, he has had to travel from the Cape and might just need the run.