This year the running of the WSB Champions Cup (Grade 1 ) and eLAN Gold Cup (Grade 3) have been split and the South African season will end with a two-day Festival Of Racing at Greyville.
The Champions Cup will be run on Saturday, 29 July while the Gold Cup, as well as the two Grade 1 juvenile races, will be run on Sunday, 30 July.
The young horses will compete over 1600m with the colts and geldings doing battle in the Premiers Champion Stakes and the fillies fighting it out in the Thekwini Stakes. Each race carries stake money of R750,000.
The R1.25-million Gold Cup over 3200m attracted 28 entries while 17 runners have been nominated to contest the R1-million Champions Cup over 1800m.
The Champions Cup could see Vodacom Durban July winner Marinaresco going for the double, having won the race last year when trained by Mike Bass. The race was staged as a tribute to Bass, who was retiring after the meeting, and wife Carol. Their daughter, Candice, took over the yard and she became the first woman trainer to win the big race.
Marinaresco’s participation in the race has yet to be confirmed but if he does run and win again, it would be one of the great fairy tales of South African racing.
Robinson-Bass has also nominated outstanding filly Nightingale who ran the race of her life when dead-heating for fourth place with Krambambuli in the Durban July.
Also entered is Premier’s Champion Trophy winner at Turffontein, Deo Juvente from the Geoff Woodruff stable. Brett Crawford has nominated Grade 1 Rising Sun Gold Challenge champion Captain America.
Justin Snaith has entered three horses, headed by Bela-Bela who cruised home in the Grade 1 Jonsson Workwear Garden Province Stakes. Black Arthur, third in the Cup Trial and It’s My Turn, third in the Betting World 1900.
Add to the list the winner of the Betting World 1900 Ten Gun Salute from the Duncan Howells yard and French Navy from the Sean Tarry stable and you have what could be an outstanding field.
Gold Cup entries include Hermoso Mundo, winner of both the Gold Bowl at Turffontein and the SABC Gold Vase at Greyville, from the Weiho Marwing stable who will be going for the big staying-race treble. He is likely to start as favourite but could find strong opposition from the Justin Snaith duo of Krambambuli and Captain Splendid, the latter having finished a head behind Hermoso Mundo.
Krambambuli won the Highland Night Cup before running an outstanding fourth in the July.
Marwing has also entered the Dynasty gelding Let It Rain who finished fourth in the Gold Bowl and third in the KZN Derby, while Adam Marcus has nominated Royal Badge who filled second place in the Betting World 2200.
Bass-Robinson has nominated Helderberg Blue and My World, the latter having finished second to Captain Splendid in the Lonsdale Stirrup Cup while Mike de Kock has nominated Kinaan, third in this race last year and third in the Gold Vase behind Hermoso Mundo.
Entries for the R1-million World Sports Betting Champions Cup (Grade 1) over 1800m at Greyville on Saturday 29 July.
14 CAPTAIN AMERICA (B Crawford) 60.0
15 DEO JUVENTE (G V Woodruff) 60.0
4 IT’S MY TURN (S J Snaith) 60.0
17 MARINARESCO (C Bass-Robinson) 60.0
3 BLACK ARTHUR (S J Snaith) 58.0
13 BRAZUCA (J J van Vuuren) 58.0
9 BULLETING HOME (S G Tarry) 58.0
6 FRENCH NAVY (S G Tarry) 58.0
8 JUDICIAL (T Zackey) 58.0
10 SAIL SOUTH (B Crawford) 58.0
2 TEN GUN SALUTE (D C Howells) 58.0
11 BELA-BELA (S J Snaith) 57.5
12 NIGHTINGALE (C Bass-Robinson) 57.5
1 MATADOR MAN (S G Tarry) 56.5
5 TABLE BAY (J Ramsden) 56.5
16 WITCHCRAFT (S G Tarry) 55.5
7 FINAL JUDGEMENT (G S Kotzen) 54.0
Entries for the R1.25-million eLAN Gold Cup (Grade 3) over 3200m at Greyville on Sunday 30 July
16 KRAMBAMBULI (S J Snaith) 60.0
1 COOL CHARDONNAY (W H Marwing) 59.0
8 HELDERBERG BLUE (C Bass- Robinson) 58.5
23 MR WINSOME (D Kannemeyer) 58.0
22 WITCHCRAFT (S G Tarry) 58.0
19 TROPHY WIFE (S G Tarry) 57.5
6 BANNER HILL (G S Kotzen) 57.0
24 ZANTE (G V Woodruff) 57.0
14 ROYAL BADGE (A N Marcus) 56.5
11 ARCH RIVAL (G V Woodruff) 56.0
3 CAPE SPEED (D Kannemeyer) 56.0
12 HERMOSO MUNDO (W H Marwing) 56.0
18 SERISSA (S G Tarry) 56.0
4 CAPTAIN SPLENDID (S J Snaith) 55.5
15 FRANCIA (S J Snaith) 55.5
27 FORTISSIMA (J A Soma) 55.0
26 LET IT RAIN (W H Marwing) 54.5
2 ROYAL HONOUR (P F Matchett) 54.5
20 THE ELMO EFFECT (G M Alexander) 54.5
17 MY WORLD (C Bass-Robinson) 54.0
21 HYAKU (S G Tarry) 53.5
25 STORM WARNING (S W Kenny) 53.5
5 LIONS EMBLEM (E Verdonese) 53.0
13 KINAAN (M F de Kock) 52.5
7 ESTIMATION (G H van Zyl) 52.0
28 GONE BABY GONE (G S Kotzen) 52.0
9 NEW FORT (G S Kotzen) 52.0
10 SABRE CHARGE (K Naidoo) 52.0