Late charge sees Crawford’s day end with three winners
Brett Crawford had something of a Jekyll-and-Hyde day at Kenilworth on Saturday.
This Philippi-based conditioner travelled to the races with a strong hand, and went home with a more than satisfactory three winners.
He made a late charge, as Depeche, St Vladimir, and Para Handy took races 6, 7 and 9 respectively.
St Vladimir was particularly impressive. This Fort Wood colt had won his maiden fluently over the Kenilworth 1800m, and cruised clear late over the same trip at a generous 5-1.
It was a mere MR 66 event, but the manner of the win suggested a bright future, and Crawford indicated post-race that this progressive staying type would be heading to KZN for the winter.
On the down side his two shortest priced runners on the day both ran well downfield.
Var Express (11-10) had made a promising debut, and was expected to be too good for a bunch of moderate maidens.
He was well beaten, but had valid excuses. The colt had a shoe replaced at the start, lost another in the running, and was found to be lame on the left hind.
Mushi Sterek (9-10) was more of a mystery. This Australian-bred filly had been ultra-impressive when winning by five lengths on debut in November, but on this occasion was beaten by the 700m mark, and trailed in last.
Anton Marcus reported she had taken no interest, and the course vet found no obvious abnormalities.
Trainer Crawford was requested to submit a further report once she had returned to the stables.
Classy Santa Clara had a perfect prep for Sun Met day with an easy win in Race 2, a FM 92 Handicap over 1600m.
This Group 2-placed daughter of Duke Of Marmalade is entered for the Majorca Stakes, Cape Derby, and CTS 1600 on the big day.
Candice Bass-Robinson indicated she is inclined to run against the colts in the Derby over 2000m come 26 January, but that no final decision has been made.