Hat Pu­tano makes SA de­but

Diamond Fields Advertiser - - RACING - DAVID THISELTON

THE high­est rated race on Turf­fontein In­side track’s nine race meet­ing to­mor­row is a Pin­na­cle Stakes event over 1 450m in which the im­ported Hat Pu­tano makes his long awaited South African de­but.

This Ar­gen­tinian-bred is weighted to win the race and is in­beaten in three starts on turf, in­clud­ing a 16 length maiden win over 1 400m and two Grade 1 wins over a mile.

How­ever, he has not run for over a year.

Amaz­ing Strike is thus cho­sen to win the race as the third best weighted horse who has had a re­cent run and is fairly well drawn here over a suit­able trip.

The sec­ond best in at the weights is Ir­ish Pride.

He is classy and might well ap­pre­ci­ate the step down to 1400m, although his two be­low par runs over 1600m at Greyville are a con­cern.

Count Tas­silo is ideally dis­tance suited and has proved in his last cou­ple of runs he can come from off the pace, so his wide draw is not a ma­jor con­cern.

Shukamisa has been in good form and is an­other who could be stay­ing on strongly, although he likes to be handy so his num­ber ten draw is tricky.

Tan­dava won a good race over 1400m on the Stand­side dur­ing the week and has to carry 1,5kg more than carded here, but he has twice up­set the ap­ple­cart since ar­riv­ing from Zim­babwe.

Ro­many Prince and Cashin from the Or­mond Fer­raris yard are both ca­pa­ble of go­ing close here, but this looks likely to be a pipe opener for the sea­son.

Donny G has a lot of pace, so the wide draw is not ideal, but he has won over this trip be­fore and the cur­rent fast ground will suit him.

Toro Rosso has his third run af­ter a year long lay­off and is drawn in pole over a suit­able trip, but he has made breath­ing noises in both of his moder­ate come­back ef­forts.

The se­lec­tion is Amaz­ing Strike to beat Count Tas­silo with Hat Pun­tano, Shukamisa and Tan­dava next best. The first race sees the reap­pear­ance of a po­ten­tial clas­sic con­tender in Cap­tain My Cap­tain, who caught the eye on Sun Met day run­ning with long strides from an im­pos­si­ble draw over 1 200m.

The form of that race has turned out to be very strong and he should en­joy this trip as his sec­ond dam is a half-sis­ter to a Ken­tucky Oaks win­ner.

The hard knock­ing Serendip­ity should get it right in the sec­ond race with not a lot to beat and Piere Stry­dom sig­nif­i­cantly keep­ing the ride.

The next two races are stay­ing events which are of­ten tricky af­fairs.

Graf Spree and Save The Rhino are the ob­vi­ous picks but it might pay to go as wide as pos­si­ble.

In the fifth Tun­dra Taita is well re­garded and Lucky Houdalakis horses of­ten come on slowly but surely, so she can fol­low up on her maiden win.

An­thony Delpech has sig­nif­i­cantly kept the ride.

In the sixth race Sil­ver Thurs­day is likely to be all the rage, but it has been seen time and time again that young three-year-olds, no mat­ter how good they are des­tined to be­come, bat­tle to win hand­i­caps in the early sea­son off high merit rat­ings and hers is up at 89.

The pref­er­ences for the bipot are My Friend Lee and Pool Party who are both dis­tance suited and de­cent types.

The eighth is one of the trick­i­est races on the card, but presents a good op­por­tu­nity for King And Em­pire, who has won twice over the 1450m course and dis­tance and is well drawn off a com­pet­i­tive merit rat­ing.

How­ever, Ali Bon Dubai has his first run out of the maid­ens in the last race, but although he took nine races to win his maiden he has struck as a fair sort and can fol­low up off a mere 63 merit rat­ing.

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