KZN Fal­cons fan­cied in Rider Cup

The Star Early Edition - - INTERNATIONAL - DAVID THISELTON

THE Rider Cup in­ter­provin­cial jock­eys com­pe­ti­tion takes cen­tre stage this week­end at Scottsville. The KZN Fal­cons team of An­thony Delpech, An­ton Mar­cus, Alec Forbes and War­ren Kennedy look to hold the trump cards, so they could make it two out of two hav­ing won the in­au­gu­ral event last year.

The first leg is a Maiden over 1 200m and KZN look par­tic­u­larly strong here.

Bio­met­ric jumped awk­wardly and was then green on de­but when beaten six lengths on the Greyville poly over this trip and the form has worked out quite well to date.

He is by Jud­pot and is a half-brother to use­ful sorts like Con­trol Freak and Greys Inn Con­trol.

He should show con­sid­er­able im­prove­ment and could be the one to beat un­der Forbes if jump­ing on terms.

Asian Star should also go close un­der Mar­cus. The form of his penul­ti­mate start over course and dis­tance has worked out well and last time, also over course and dis­tance, he showed good pace and when switched out from be­hind run­ners ran on well. The form of that race looks fair in the con­text of this event.

His Mark Dixon-trained sta­ble­mate Edge Of Glory was not dis­graced in his penul­ti­mate start over 1 000m at Ke­nil­worth and his KZN de­but over 1 000m at Scottsville con­firmed he would prob­a­bly en­joy the step up to 1 200m as he stayed on with­out be­ing pu­n­ished.

He is a full-brother to a horse who won five times from 1 2001600m and he should be right there un­der MJ Byleveld (Cape Ea­gles) in this unin­spir­ing field.

Strong ‘N Brave showed good pace with first time blink­ers on over this trip on the poly and fin­ished fifth.

He beat Luck­dragon by seven lengths and the lat­ter, who is a bat­tling maiden, had ear­lier fin­ished sec­ond to the promis­ing Les­lie Shad­ow­liner when lead­ing and stay­ing on over 1 200m on the Greyville turf.

There­fore, Strong ‘N Brave must have a chance un­der Delpech in a race of this qual­ity.

First Mate

First Mate showed good pace sec­ond time out over 1 000m be­fore be­ing out­gunned in the fi­nal stages and fin­ish­ing fifth. How­ever, on pedi­gree he should en­joy the step up in trip and has pos­si­bil­i­ties un­der Kennedy.

Luck­dragon, who is rid­den by Gavin Ler­ena (Highveld Hawks), might ap­pre­ci­ate be­ing back on a turf sur­face and can’t be ig­nored.

Ku Du Tu, a Jay Peg gelding, is an in­ter­est­ing two-year-old debu­tant as he is a half-brother to a Win­drush colt who won on de­but over this trip and reached a merit rat­ing of 90 af­ter fur­ther placed runs be­hind good horses.

He will be rid­den by Greg Cheyne (Cape). The other first-timer Hard To Play is a two-year-old colt by Curved Ball out of a Ka­hal mare who has pro­duced two mod­er­ate win­ners and will be rid­den by Craig Zackey (Highveld).

Blue­moon­ris­ing, rid­den by Marco van Rens­burg (Highveld), made a fair de­but and is an­other to con­sider.

Mar­cus also has a good ride in the sec­ond leg on the two-yearold Dy­nasty colt Eyes Wide Open, who was caught wide on de­but over 1 400m at Scottsville but still stayed on for third.

He will ap­pre­ci­ate the step up in trip to 1 600m in this maiden event and has a fair draw of six.

How­ever, he could be given a good run by an­other two-year-old, Vi­sion­aire colt Vol­canic Sun­set, who has some de­cent 1 200m form and on pedi­gree will ap­pre­ci­ate the step up in trip. Richard Fourie (Cape) rides him from a plum draw of two. River Gar­den has fin­ished sec­ond in all three of his starts to date, all at Scottsville from 1 200m to 1 600m, and will have a chance here from draw eight un­der Corne Orf­fer (Cape).

Lucky At Last was green on de­but from a wide draw on the poly over 1 400m but stayed on well and looks to have scope, so he has a chance un­der Delpech over a step up in trip he will en­joy.

Time Travel made a fair KZN de­but on the poly and could also earn here un­der Forbes.

St Peters Bay has run a fair race over course and dis­tance be­fore and could also earn points un­der Zackey.

The third leg is a 1 200m MR 82 Hand­i­cap and once again KZN look to have a good hand.

Roy’s Air Force

Rock Of Africa (Mar­cus) and Roy’s Air Force (Delpech) should be right there.

How­ever, the Shane Humby pair Mid­night Vi­sion (Zackey) and Way­wood (S’Manga Khu­malo (Highveld) bring some fine Ke­nil­worth form and off mere 72 merit rat­ings they have fine chances re­turn­ing from lay­offs over trips short of their best. Out My Way (Fourie) and Ben­gal Boy (Van Rens­burg) could also earn points.

In the last leg Mar­cus has an­other good ride on the tal­ented Princess Ana­lia in the MR 66 Hand­i­cap for fil­lies and mares over 1 200m. On­line (Van Rens­burg) has a good chance too and oth­ers who make most ap­peal are Rus­sian Girl (Zackey), Storm Kit­ten (Cheyne), Le Suerte De Matar (Byleveld) and Royal Kait­rina (Fourie).

The points earned for each race are 1st 20, 2nd 16, 3rd 14, 4th 12, 5th 10 and 6th 8.

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