This Brett Crawford-trained runner was all the rage to win a Pinnacle Stakes over 1100m at the track last time but after racing prominently early on, the four-year-old son of Dynasty compounded late and finished up in 13th spot, 11.50 lengths behind winner Asstar.
He returned fatigued and perhaps a line needs to be drawn through that performance. A run earlier saw De Kock come back well after a rest over 1000m and he raced away to beat Villa Del Largo by 2.25 lengths.
He might have been incubating some ailment or perhaps it was just a flat run in his second race after a layoff but one cannot write him off on the basis of one disappointing effort. Prior to his rest De Kock had the distinction of beating Horse
Of The Year Legislate by 0.40 lengths in the Grade 2 Selangor Cup over 1400m before failing to overcome a wide draw in the Grade 1 Guineas. He finished in 12th place, beaten 8.15 lengths by Elusive Gold.
Corne Orffer has ridden him in his last two starts and has the ride once again.
Asstar showed he was a lot better than many people believed with his victory in that Pinnacle Stakes. He meets many of the same runners, some of them under better weight conditions despite being 2.5kg under sufferance in this event. This
Glen Puller-trained runner was content to sit near the rear and ran on strongly in the closing stages to beat Daring Dave by 1.50 lengths.
Daring Dave is in the line-up but there has to be a question mark over his ability to go the distance. All his wins have been over 1000m and he has failed over this distance before.
Capetown Noir makes his seasonal comeback and the five-year-old son of Western Winter has the class to win a race of this nature. One has to go way back in his career to find the runs but he is unbeaten over the course and distance.
Trainer Yvette Bremner has done well with Copper Parade and the seven-year-old will be having his first start since finishing a 0.50-length second behind Fly By Night in the Grade 1 Mercury Sprint at Clairwood in July.
He does have a lot of weight to carry but will have the services of Piere Strydom.