Jack Milner
2 minute read
12 May 2015
6:00 am

Go smell the Rose

Jack Milner

Alascan Maiden has the class to win.

Fillies’ handicaps are often described as the toughest races for punters to untangle as they often produce unexpected results.

So the bad news for pundits is that the topliner on tomorrow’s card at Kenilworth is a MR 84 Handicap for fillies and mares over 1400m. But the good news is that although it is competitive, it might not take Jean François Champollion, the man who deciphered the Rosetta Stone, to decode the signs in Race 6.

There are some decent fillies and mares contesting this event, quite surprising for a mid-week out-of-season meeting in the Cape.

The runner with debatably the best form is Alascan Maiden for the Mike Bass yard. She was deemed good enough to bring up to Joburg for the summer season but after pulling off a convincing victory in her debut run over 1600m on the Turffontein inside track in which she found a lot of betting support, this daughter of Captain Al  could not win another race on the Highveld.

However, she did run against some decent opposition and was not too far off the winner. Since arriving back in Cape Town she has run two places in strong company but the one factor against Alascan Maiden is that in  five starts over 1400m, she has only one second and one third to show for her efforts. What she does have in her favour is Bernard Fayd’Herbe in the irons and a decent enough No 6 draw

While she might not have run against the same class of horse, Swannee Rose has suddenly found form. Although now six-years-old, Joey Ramsden’s charge has won five of her last six starts, of which four have been over 1400m.

In her only defeat in that sequence of wins Swannee Rose went down 0.30 lengths to Crystal Cavern over the course and distance so as a result, the daughter of Count Dubois could be the better option to win this race. Karl Neisius takes the ride.

They look to be the two with the best form and one could possibly get away with the pair in all exotic bets but if you do look beyond them then it looks quite open.

Lift Off hails from the Justin Snaith yard but on a line through Crystal Cavern, she should not be able to beat Swannee Rose, especially as she jumps from No 12 draw. Nonki Poo also has some decent form and has raced against some good fillies and mares but she looks held by Alascan Maiden on their last run behind Lady Kelpie. Perini has ability but looks better over 1200m. In her only race over 1400m she ran unplaced.

However, if you are looking for a good roughie then Moika Dancer could be the answer. She is inconsistent but is 4kg better off with Swannee Rose for a 0.30-length defeat. However, she returns from a 160-day layoff.