The Johannesburg-based trainer was commenting on his champion Louis The King failing to fire in last Saturday’s J&B Met at Kenilworth. The 18-10 shot finished sixth, 4.40 lengths behind Cape star Futura.
Woodruff does believe that Louis The King would have run a better race with different tactics. Jockey Piere Strydom had Louis The King in second as first Punta Arenas and then Helderberg Blue set the pace and Woodruff said: “Louis didn’t enjoy being so handy.
“In hindsight we made a mistake with the tactics. If they were going to go a crawl, we thought he’d be better up there. Looking back, if he’d been on the outside of Futura, just off midfield, and they’d raced home together he would probably have run better.”
Tellina did best of Woodruff’s three runners in fourth and the trainer said: “I’m not one to cite the excuse of second-run-after-a-layoff syndrome, but he ran a nice race and I think he can improve on that.”
Killua Castle finished 12th after racing wide. “You can’t race like that in Cape Town. It was a disappointing Met, but that’s racing.”
Woodruff’s other runner at the meeting was Arcetri Pink, who finished ninth in the Klawervlei Majorca Stakes. She, however, was a bit jarred up on Sunday morning, having “hated the firm ground”.
Louis The King and Tellina will be aimed at the Horse Chestnut Stakes on SA Classic Day before taking in the President’s Champions Challenge on Champions Day at the end of April.