De Kock’s Noble Se­cret re­turns

The Star Early Edition - - RACING - DAVID THISELTON

THE Vaal stages a ten race meet­ing to­mor­row and the high­light will be a Progress Plate over 1 200m for three-year-olds, which has at­tracted some classy sorts. Mike de Kock must have one of his most pow­er­ful ever crop of three-year-olds and this race sees the re­turn of the ex­cit­ing Dy­nasty colt Noble Se­cret.

He showed an ef­fort­less turn of foot on de­but over this course and dis­tance and with Ran­dall Si­mons look­ing over his shoul­der saun­tered to a 9,25 length vic­tory.

He was ac­corded a merit rat­ing of 88, which he will surely rise above in time.

Si­mons has been given the ride again and al­though Noble Se­cret has not run for 119 days his class will give him a good chance.

The of­fi­cially best weighted horse is the Mike Azzie-trained Down To Zero, who showed pace through­out when win­ning a Maiden Ju­ve­nile Plate over 1 200m by a com­fort­able mar­gin in June.

He had the classy Sur­charge beaten in that race and will ap­pre­ci­ate the step back to this trip, hav­ing been well beaten in the Grade 2 Golden Horse­shoe over 1 400m in July.

Rebel’s Champ

Rebel’s Champ looks to have the beat­ing of the top weight So Var on pa­per, al­though it could be a dif­fer­ent story at the races.

Rebel’s Champ was beaten 1,5 lengths by So Var over 1 160m in June and is now 5,5kg bet­ter off.

How­ever, So Var sub­se­quently beat the classy Al­folk, de­spite giv­ing him 2kg, and was then run­ner up to an­other classy sprinter in Al Mari­achi, whom he also gave 2kg.

The con­cern is that he made a breath­ing noise in his come­back run last month, so Rebel’s Champ is given the nod for third.

Rebel’s Champ made a fair come­back against older horses two months ago over 1 160m and has sub­se­quently been gelded.

An­other in­ter­est­ing run­ner hav­ing his first out­ing since geld­ing is Pin­na­cle Peak from the Dor­rie Sham yard as he ran two de­cent 1 000m races in his first two starts in Port Elizabeth.

The De Kock ma­chine should also win the fourth race over 1 200m with Afdeek.

He was a touch un­lucky on de­but over this trip as the win­ner crossed his path at a cru­cial stage.

He does not have a lot to beat and should have im­proved with that run.

The three Pick 6 legs fol­low­ing the Progress Plate are all fil­lies and mares hand­i­caps and pun­ters will have their work cut out get­ting through the ex­otics.

How­ever, De Kock could pos­si­bly claim a quick hat­trick in the sixth race over 1 200m with Ra­jasthani Queen.

She is not an im­pos­ing sort, but ran on well to win over 1 000m on de­but and the horse she beat, Schip­pers, then went close next time out over 1 160m.

Ra­jasthani Queen was ac­corded a rea­son­able merit rat­ing of 76 and will ap­pre­ci­ate the ex­tra 200m.

The top­weight Momo is by Ideal World so should be com­ing into her own as a four-year-old. In her last two runs she was widely drawn at the Turf­fontein In­side track so can be for­given those runs. She has been dropped two merit rated points and can bounce back and go close.


Kung­foofight­ing went close on her Highveld de­but and al­though raised four points for that run she has to be con­sid­ered along with her sta­ble­mate An Air Of Suc­cess and Amoretta, who lost her jockey last time but be­fore that won her maiden in good style and runs off a mere 61 merit rat­ing for the in-form Paul Peter yard.

In the sev­enth race over 1 000m the Dor­rie Sham-trained Lawdy Miss Clawdy could be the one hav­ing also made a fine Highveld de­but.

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