The Citizen (KZN)
Star fillies out at Vaal
HIGH CLASS: GRADUATION PLATE WORTHY OF FEATURE-RACE STATUS
Winter Smoke has the speed to take the honours.
While tomorrow’s card at the Vaal is predominantly a typical midweek race meeting, the field going to post for Race 3, a Graduation Plate over 1000m for three-year-old fillies, is worthy of Graded status.
Winter Smoke, Greens, Rapid Fire and Slalom Queen have all raced in Graded races, while Southern Charm and Anna Capri have both run twice for a placed run and an easy win.
There is plenty speed in this field and, with the track running fast, some of these horses could be run off their feet.
Winter Smoke and Rapid Fire contested the Grade 1 Allan Robertson Championship over 1200m at Scottsville and it was the former who performed best. Ashley Fortune’s runner showed plenty speed but was caught close home and ended up in fourth place, 2.55 lengths behind Vernichey.
She then went on to win the KZN Breeders Juvenile Plate for fillies (Non-Black Type) over 1200m on the Greyville Polytrack, comfortably beating Magical Flight by 2.50 lengths.
Interestingly, Aldo Domeyer will be making the trip from Cape Town to ride the daughter of What a Winter – and she is the first choice to win this event.
Rapid Fire finished 3.45 lengths behind Winter Smoke at Scottsville but is now 3kg better off, so that must bring her into the picture. Mike and Adam Azzie’s charge never got a blow-in against Greens in a 1000m race at Turffontein after that as Paul Peter’s charge flew out of the stalls and had the race won a long way from home, beating Rapid Fire by six lengths.
Rapid Fire is 3kg better off against her as well, which should help, but she will need to stay in touch. However, the Querari filly showed good pace in her last start over 1200m on the Turffontein Inside track but proved no match for highly regarded Vars Vicky.
She is the best-weighted runner but jockey Piere Strydom will need to be at his best to turn the tables on Winter Smoke and Greens, who will be ridden again by Luke Ferraris.