Jack Milner
2 minute read
10 Mar 2016
12:02 pm

Ready for a carnival

Jack Milner

Fort Meyers should be at peak fitness. 


Trainer Stephen Moffatt has been waiting for Roman Carnival to show his best form on the turf and today at the Vaal could just be his day.

The four-year-old Windrush gelding loved the Vaal sand and his merit rating went as high as 106 on the surface. However, as he did not obtain a genuine turf rating for a while, Roman Carnival was doomed to race at that sand merit rating. That has now been adjusted and he will be running off a rating of 77 in Race 2, a MR 85 Handicap over 1600m.

Roman Carnival’s last two starts have been promising enough, finishing 2.35 lengths behind African Ruler over 1200m at the Vaal and then running fifth to Finchatton over 1450m on the Turffontein Inside track, beaten just 3.50 lengths. He was also the second fastest finisher in his last race.

Moffatt then realised that one of the mistakes he had made was putting his charge over sprint distances on turf. “He won races from 1200m to 1600m on the sand so he needs to be tried over at least 1600m on the turf.”

This should be the perfect race. Because the race is run up the straight there will be a decent early pace. His merit-rating drop allows him to run in a lower division and he is drawn at No 9 of the 10 runners which is where you want to be on the outside track. Ryan Munger takes the ride.

With the Sean Tarry stable in such devastating form currently one cannot ignore anything from that stable. Tarry saddles lightly raced Fort Myers who will be having his third run after a layoff of almost a year. Prior to the break he won two successive races – both at the Vaal – and his two comeback runs indicate he could be ready for another victory.

In December he ran over 1160m at Turffontein and finished a 3.35-length fifth behind Kapellmeister and then raced in a MR 88 Handicap over 1450m on the Turffontein Inside track and was beaten 5.60 lengths by Jolie Roger.

There was some money for him in the betting which indicates he could be coming back to form. He tries 1600m for the first time but is by Fort Wood and should see out the trip. S’manga Khumalo takes the ride.

Trees Of Green found betting support in his last start to go out a 17-10 favourite but made a respiratory noise and faded out badly. Prior to that the son of Dynasty showed some good form and is a lot better than that run. Apprentice Callan Murray takes the ride for the Mike de Kock stable.