Horses / Columnists

Piere Strydom
5 minute read
31 May 2014
10:29 am

Strydom sees Daily News as a two-horse affair

Piere Strydom

The big meeting of the weekend is at Greyville today.

I couldn’t get any quality rides so I’m not taking part but I was offered some nice rides at Kenilworth this afternoon so I thought I would go and take my chances.

I’m going down to pay some “debts”. I made a promise to trainer Justin Snaith last season and another to Alan Greeff and both are calling in their markers. So I’m off to Cape Town today and Port Elizabeth next Friday.

It’s a long way to go for nothing so with any luck I can have some success. I hope the rain doesn’t ruin the day, though. I have had some communication with the stable with regards to my rides and I understand Captainofmysoul in Race 6 is my best ride and Acrostar in Race 8 will go close.

There is very little separating the three leading trainers for this year’s championship with Justin Snaith slightly ahead of Geoff Woodruff and Sean Tarry respectively so with two months to go it could be quite interesting. Justin has two good runners in the Daily News 2000 and the Woolavington 2000 in Legislate and In The Fast Lane respectively.

The danger to Legislate has to be Louis the King, trained by Geoff Woodruff. I’m leaning towards Legislate because I think his acceleration could give him the upper hand. I still think this is a two-horse race.

In The Fast Lane is one of the highest rated fillies and she has the good draw, whereas the others will need luck in running.


Tomorrow racing is on the inside track at Turffontein. The track is running fast and hard and any horse who has speed is definitely a bonus. We also have a carryover Pick 6 of R500,000 with the pool expected to be R2.6 million.

The first race is a work riders’ event and there is very little form, but the three horses to play around with are Payasa, Sail On and Mirror The Moon.

In Race 2 one could take a chance and banker Ron in the BiPot. He is drawn well and even though he was well beaten, it was by quite a smart horse in Precursor. I rode him in the Grade 1 race Scottsville last week he gave me a good feel but he was all at sea on the undulating track. He is worth following.

Just keep an eye on the scratchings. It could bring Unparalleled in and he could have a decent chance.

Race 3 is the opening leg of the Place Accumulator and contains a moderate bunch of fillies, many going over the distance for the first time. It could throw up a funny result so I’m going wide in the PA with Waltraut, Elusive Delage, The Light House and Californian Girl

I’m riding The Fifth Day in Race 4. He has a shocking draw and his last two races were in work rider event. So it leaves me with Gold Bank as the horse to beat. But even though his form is better than others in this field I would find it difficult to banker him so I would look to Red Inn, who could make some improvement as he is lightly raced, and possibly Global Myth.

I would put all of these into the Pick 6 because if you want to look further, you will have to go with the field.

If there are scratchings and Enaad gets in, he could end up being a banker in this field.

In Race 5 I’m riding Brass Verdict. He has a place chance on best form but he needs to find a couple of lengths. Unfortunately I didn’t think Gold Bay would run in this race as he was very badly drawn in a large field when the nominations came out and I did not think Sean Tarry would run him and started looking elsewhere for a ride. But only a few runners accepted, and he ended up being drawn nine out of nine.

For the PA I would consider Rambo – as he has a lot of speed, is drawn well and might be able to get a soft lead – Gold Bay and Reims. It is a competitive field and one might need to take the entire field for the Pick 6.

I ride For Gia in Race 6. He is drawn badly and now does not have the benefit of a 4kg claimer so once again, I would be quite happy with a place. My first pick is Commodore Al but unfortunately he also doesn’t have a good draw. That is why I will include Paintyourface and Siddharth in the PA.

As the Pick 6 is already expensive I think one can take a chance on those three.

In Race 7 I will banker Shayna in all bets. I see Go Dutch and Moonriver Magic as the two dangers but Go Dutch, who is drawn No 1, seems held by Shayna, and Moonriver Magichas quite a bad draw and doesn’t have the benefit of a 2.5kg allowance from last time.

Those factors convinced me even more Shayna could be a possible banker.

I thought Race 8 was quite a competitive field but the horse I believe who could have the most scope for improvement and possibly win this race is Right Royal Diva. Unfortunately she has a bad draw. My value bet for the day is Mesmerising Melody. This is her third run after a layoff, she is back to her best distance, has a light weight with a 1.5kg allowance and jumps from pole position.

Those are my runners for both the Place Accumulator and Pick 6.

I ride Dirtydealin’ Mamma in Race 9. As I said last time I think she is better over shorter, which we are getting tomorrow, but she has a bad draw. I will be happy with a place as I think there could a smart filly to beat in Mike de Kock-trained Cio-Cio. She was heavily backed on debut so obviously has some ability.

I make Circle Of Speed the danger. Her last two runs were in feature-race company and before that she had quite good form. She also has the benefit of a good draw

There are others with chances but they have bad draws and for that reason those two picks should get you through in all bets.