Crawford eyes R2R double
PHILLIPPI-BASED trainer Brett Crawford (pictured) enjoyed a halcyon day at last year’s Lanzerac meeting, winning the R2 million Ready To Run (R2R) Stakes with Captain America and the Selangor Cup with De Kock, and he has a chance of another feature race double at this year’s meeting on Saturday.
His impressive Dynasty filly Alexis is a leading contender in the Ready To Run Stakes over 1 400m and both Captain America and Gr 1 winner Futura have a chance of winning the Gr 2 Lanzerac Le General Green Points Stakes over 1 600m.
Crawford said about the athletic filly who could maintain his unbeaten record in the Ready To Run Stakes, “Alexis has won both of her last two starts well and she shows us a lot at home. It will be a tough test against the boys but she is drawn well and is fit and well, so we are expecting a good run.’’
She showed a fine turn of foot first time out of the maidens in a MR 79 handicap over 1200m against some useful older fillies and won by 2,25 lengths, despite having been awarded an 85 merit rating for her facile maiden win over 1 300m at Durbanville.
On pedigree Alexis will have no problem with the trip at all as she is out of a half-sister by Parade Leader to the stakes winning Winona, who won from 1 600m to 2 600m.
She is drawn superbly in barrier two with Corné Orffer up and should be doing her best work at the finish.
Fillies receive 2,5kg from the boys and have a fine record in the country's big sales races, having won half of the eight renewals of Turffontein’s lucrative Emperor’s Palace Ready To Run Cup.
Crawford said about the Captain Al gelding Captain America and the Dynasty colt Futura, who are both making their seasonal reappearances, “They are both very well and have come on beautifully.
“It's obviously their first run but both are exactly where I want them to be and they are going to be competitive on Saturday.’’
Orffer, who has filled in for the sidelined Glen Hatt as Crawford's stable jockey, is aboard Captain America and Crawford explained, “Corné knows that Futura is Glen's horse so he would rather stick with Captain America than be replaced when Glen returns.’’
Bernard Fayd’Herbe rides Futura from a wide draw of ten and Captain America hasn't fared much better in barrier 9. However, both horses have a tremendous turn of foot and will likely be running on.
Futura, third in the Vodacom Durban July and winner of the Gr 1 Champions Cup over 1 800m, is merit rated 113, just one point below Equus Horse Of The Year Legislate, who also lines up in the Green Point. Captain America, who is a twice Gr 1 runner up, enjoyed no luck at all in the July and is merit rated 106. He is a big horse and will likely enjoy being back on his home, left-handed course.
Crawford mentioned some of his other runners on the day, “Secret Society will run well and Prescient has a chance. Zacharias has a big weight, but is doing very, very well. She likes running fresh and over the tough Kenilworth 1 200m should be in the shake up.’’