Before he had even run, the word was out that trainer Alec Laird had a high opinion of Romi’s Boy. He made his debut at the Vaal on 1 October in a strongly contested Maiden Plate which was won by Doosra with Romi’s Boy in second, beaten 1.75 lengths.
It was no surprise when the son of Querari went off at 3-10 to win his second start and he duly obliged, beating Furiosa by 1.50 lengths.
He was strongly fancied to win the Listed Secretariat Stakes over 1400m at Turffontein but after leading from the off, faded badly to finish 8.50 lengths behind Matador Man. He was gelded after that and after running a third, and second place respectively, he eventually cantered to victory in a Progress Plate over 1200m on the Turffontein Inside track, beating Doosra by 5.75 lengths.
He only got a six-point penalty for that win, the maximum allowed for a plate race, so his rating could still be below the curve when he lines up in Race 7 on the Vaal Inside track on Thursday, a MR 92 Handicap over 1200m. Only eight horses are carded to go to post so the draw is irrelevant. JP van der Merwe takes the ride.
The main threat should come from Mike Azzie-trained Angel’s Power, who can in his CV that he was beaten just 0.30 lengths by Rafeef, the winner of this year’s Computaform Sprint, over the course and distance. He went on to win two more races after that and will have to give Romi’s Boy 2kg.
Apprentice Lyle Hewitson was due to ride Angel’s Power but he is out of action, recovering from a broken collarbone after a fall at Fairview on Saturday. However, Anthony Delpech has picked up the ride so he could be a big threat to Romi’s Boy.
There is one interesting question we would all love answered is which one would Piere Strydom have taken? He has only ridden Romi’s Boy twice, and that was for both of his wins. He has also ridden Angel’s Power four times, for the second behind Rafeef, the two wins and in his third run in which he went down a short head to African Ruler. Strydom is out of action for the next couple of weeks but I would imagine both Laird and Azzie would be keen to have him aboard.
Others with chances include Double Appeal, Sporting Monarch and Morpheus.
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