Jack Milner
2 minute read
6 Nov 2014
6:00 am

Dream ride for Hennie

Jack Milner

It is so hard to pick a winner on times on the Vaal sand as the surface can alter with almost every race. Now the rains have come that could make it even tougher.

GOOD TIMES. Dream Leader has shown plenty of speed lately and could be the answer to a tricky Race 7 on the Vaal sand today.

However, there are times when a horse puts up an excellent time, especially over 1000m, and could indicate he might have an edge over his rivals That is the case in Race 7 at the Vaal today, a MR 80 Handicap over 1000m on the sand.

When Dream Leader beat Dravidian in his last run on the sand he did so in a time of 58.06sec. That is a decent time on the surface and better than anything achieved by his rivals in recent races. What probably gives a better indication trainer Louis Erasmus has his horse in fine fettle is that in last run, which was on the turf, he ran a cracker to finish a 1.80-length third behind Greasepaint over 1000m on the Turffontein inside track.

He is rated 22 points, which translates into 11kg, better on sand so that was a very promising performance. Dream Leader is also very close on form to Eusebius based on their run in July. On that occasion Eusebius beat the four-year-old Kahal gelding by one length but is now 1kg worse off. Hennie Greyling reprises his role aboard Dream Leader while Chad Little does the same on Eusebius. Gems A Plenty is another runner who deserves respect. Ridden by Gavin Lerena, this Dominic Zaki-trained runner gave 11.5kg and a 1.50-length beating to Antonius Charm in a MR 68 Handicap over this course and distance.

That was his first run for the stable and any further improvement could make him the horse they will all have to beat. He takes a jump in class in this event but has run some decent races behind the likes of Anger, who won the Grade 3 August Stakes over 1200m at this track.

Hang Fire looks well held by Eusebius based on his last run when beaten four lengths but Brett Webber’s charge seems to be slightly better off over a bit further these days. However, with the rains having fallen and the track slowing down a little, that could suit the seven-year-old Argentinian-bred horse.

Juan Paul van der Merwe takes the ride and Hang Fire could be worth including in all exotics.

Benbow is another runner who can trouble the opposition on his day. Last time he ran second behind Eusebius, beaten 2.50 lengths, and is now 3kg better off. Hang Fire finished 1.50 lengths further back.

Benbow is not always the most consistent of runners but if in the mood, could win a race of this nature.