Jack Milner
2 minute read
20 Dec 2014
2:00 pm

‘War’ a Pick 6 banker

Jack Milner

It all sounds so familiar. A three-year-old who has only been beaten once but with no Grade 1 pedigree, taking on opposition some of whom have either won or been placed in a Grade 1 event. 

Picture: Thinkstock

The outcome should also produce a feeling of déjà vu. Just as Majmu easily defeated a field of her own sex in the Avontuur Estate Cape Fillies Guineas at Kenilworth two weeks ago, so Act Of War is likely to demolish the colts tomorrow in the R1-million Grand Parade Cape Guineas over 1600m today.

The one difference is that while Majmu was rated far better than her rivals, Harry’s Son has a 0.5kg merit rating advantage over Act Of War. Paul Lafferty’s charge has won and placed at Grade 1 level in KwaZulu-Natal and also won the Grade 3 Graham Beck Stakes at Turffontein last month.

But while Harry’s Son has had to travel to win his races, trainer Joey Ramsden has been able to accomplish everything he has needed to do with Act Of War from the comfort of his stable.

The son of Dynasty was beaten on debut by a short head but since then has notched up four feature-race wins, the last being the Grade 2 Selangor Cup over this distance which he won very easily, beating Kingvoldt by 2.25 lengths. It was a memorable race for jockey Piere Strydom as it gave him his 5,000th winner.

He was offered the ride again but as Anton Marcus will regain the ride as soon as he returns to racing, Strydom felt it would be more sensible to stay with Harry’s Son who could be off on an overseas campaign after this race.

He has not said which of the two he rates the better but did comment that Act Of War is a very easy ride. He is certain to say a lot more in his column tomorrow morning.

What we do know, however, is that Harry’s Son, who started to close ground hand over fist in the final 200m of the Dingaans over 1600m at Turffontein on Summer Cup Day, began to plod over the final 100m and made no impression on Unparalleled. It could have been all the travelling or perhaps he does not see out 1600m at this stage on a tough course like Turffontein.

Bernard Fayd’Herbe will have no such problem with Act Of War who is a confident selection to win and stands out as a banker in the carryover Pick 6, which is expected to reach R3.2-million.

One runner who could upset the applecart is Sean Tarry-trained Zambezi River. His is unbeaten in three starts and that includes the R2-million Lanzerac Ready To Run Cup over 1400m at Kenilworth. He is a long-striding fellow and will be putting in his best at the finish.

*Yesterday no 9, Alpha Pegasi, one of three Snaith runners in the race, was withdrawn, having injured his near fore.