Can Vardy get one past One World?
THE Vaughan Marshall-trained seven-time winner One World can defy top-weight at Kenilworth today when stepping out with MJ Byleveld aboard in the Gr3 Winter Classic.
This 1800m contest for three-yearolds is second leg of the Winter Series.
This expensive son of Captain Al has outstanding credentials – having been beaten only once in his seven starts.
That defeat was three runs back when third in the Cape Guineas (Grade 1) at this course.
However, the colt recovered losses next time with a clear-cut win in a lucrative sales race over 1600m.
Then coming off a three-month break and ridden by Anton Marcus again he justified cramped odds with a gutsy win in the Gr 3 Winter Guineas, first leg of the Winter Series.
Byleveld knows what is required as he was aboard three times for three wins.
The colt will be much fitter this time and with a good inside draw the combination should remain unbeaten.
The colt’s main threat is threetime winner Vardy (Craig Zackey) out Adam Marcus’s stable.
This gelding, who has yet to finish out of the money in six starts, was a gallant close second to One World last time in the Winter Guineas.
They are drawn alongside and another keen duel can be expected.
Though a one-time winner, expect another stout effort from Majestic Mozart (Greg Cheyne) out of Candice Bass-Robinson’s stable.
This Dynasty gelding was up with the speed for much of the race last time when third to One World and Vardy in the Winter Guineas.
That was his second run after being gelded and he could go much closer this time with the advantage of pole position.
Another who could be involved in the finish is Glen Kotzen-trained two-time winner Herodotus (S’manga Khumalo).
This Trippi colt was a commendable third out of 18 in the Gr1 Cape Derby.
Partnered by Khumalo in his subsequent outing he was not disgraced when finishing third to One World and Vardy in the 1600m Winter Guineas.
He could make the frame again over the extra distance.
Over a distance far short of his best, Al Mutawakel, a full-brother to SA Derby winner Al Sahem, made an absolute mockery of opposition on debut when justifying 26-10 favouritism.
Now stepping up to 1400m and shouldering bottom-weight of 52kg, this Sean Tarry-trained son of Silvano looks a solid Place Accumulator banker when he reunites with champion jockey Lyle Hewitson tomorrow, a MR 84 Handicap on the Turffontein Standside track.
“Unfortunately, he’s had a few niggles and setbacks,” admitted Hewitson on Tellytrack.
“He’s never given that impression – from day one – that he is on the level of his brother but sometimes they just save it for the course.
“I was hoping for a fourth or fifthplace finish, albeit a weak field, I just wanted a good run and the fact he has come through and won shows that he has that class about him. Hopefully, he goes on to bigger things.”
For the Pick 6, make sure you add in the ultra-consistent, Norland, who although hasn’t won for some time, doesn’t know how to run a bad race and has taken home a minor stakes cheque in each of his last seven performances.
The remainder of the eight-race card looks competitive.
Having sparked tremendous improvement when sporting blinkers for the first time the Gary Alexander-trained Duke Of Swing looks a worthy Pick 6 banker when he contests the third race, a Maiden Plate over 2000m.
He looks like the progressive type and is well drawn at two in this 10horse field.
The only real chink in his armour appears to be the fact he shoulders 2.5kg more than main danger, Humour Me, from the Geoff Woodruff yard.
Although he has only run a place once in six career starts, there was a lot to like about this Ideal World gelding’s most recent performance when beaten 2.50 lengths into fifth place by The Litigator over 2400m.
He raced handy and only ran out of puff passing the 400m marker which strongly suggests he will be better suited to 2000m.
The Mike de Kock yard rarely concludes a Highveld meeting without visiting the winner’s enclosure.
It should pay to take a TAB double featuring their mounts – Gimme Hope Johanna in seventh and Mutrib in the eighth.
The former’s previous form proves that she may have found 1600m a touch too far in her latest appearance, beaten 1.50 lengths into seventh place by Being Fabulous over 1400m.
And it didn’t help that she was badly drawn!
Gimme Hope Johanna was triumphant over 1450m in her penultimate outing and should relish the drop back to 1400m.