Leading trainer Justin Snaith is warming up the engine of his KwaZulu-Natal operation ahead of the winter season and he could sound a couple of intimidatory revs at Greyville on Sunday.
Crown Towers has been a willing servant, travelling around the country to register five victories and a handful of places from 17 runs. He has been a foundation stone of the new satellite yard at Summerveld and claimed the Michaelmas Handicap in October to cement the Snaith presence on the East Coast.
The Australian-bred toughie then journeyed north for a Highveld sojourn, keeping the locals on their toes in both the Charity Mile and the Summer Cup.
Stable jockey Richard Fourie flies up to Durban to partner Crown Towers in Race 5, a 1600m Pinnacle Stakes on turf, and the combo will be hard to beat from a No 5 draw. The one doubt is a three-month break from the races, but trusted KZN assistant trainer Megan Trott knows all about getting and keeping horses race-fit.
Trip To Africa and Priceless Ruler are the two to pounce if Crown Towers is a tad underdone.
In Race 7, a MR90 Handicap, Fourie teams up with Myhopesanddreams, a four-year-old recently relocated from the Snaith mothership in Cape Town. He has sparkling Cape form, with four wins in eight starts since being gelded, and could have the measure of the opposition in this 1400m contest.
Not that the opposition is ropey; far from it. Wendy Whitehead’s African Sunrise, Tony Rivalland’s Vinson, Alyson Wright’s Ralph The Rascal and Yogas Govender’s Drunken Sailor are just a few MR points off Myhopesanddreams and have been knocking loudly on the door of late. Garth Puller sends out Banzai Pipeline, a steady improver who could cause the upset.
2 Austen, 5 Super Leila, 6 Soller, 3 Princess Donelly
1 Alwaysonmymind, 8 Colour Of Light, 11 Soiree, 2 Arianos Spinner
11 Grey Linngari, 9 Arminius, 1 Jacob’s Ladder, 8 Do Re Mi
5 Mystic Master, 7 Casimiro, 14 Predator, Maestro Sonador
5 Crown Towers, 4 Trip To Africa, 7 Priceless Ruler, 2 Williams Land
1 Fire Flower, 10 Mama Pyjama, 2 Consol Queen, 9 Izhiestia
7 Myhopesanddreams, 10 Banzai Pipeline, 1 Drunken Sailor, 4 African Sunrise
9 Camora, 4 My Lord And Master, 1 Drogarati, 14 Victory Twist
1,8,9,11 x 2,5,7,14 x 5 x 1,10 x 1,4,6,7,9,10,11 x 1,4,9 (R672)
1,8,11 x 1,9,11 x 5,7 x 5 x 1 x 1,7,10 x 9 (R54)