There are still some horses on the periphery of earning their places in the R4.25-million Vodacom Durban July and they have a chance to impress the selection panel if they can come up with good runs in the Grade 3 Track And Ball Derby and Oaks, both over 2400m at Scottsville tomorrow.
The meeting also sees the return to riding of Anton Marcus who has been off since having his wrist damaged by an insubordinate horse last month.
He gets aboard It’s My Turn for trainer Dean Kannemeyer and hopefully can prove all is well with him by winning the race without causing any further damage to his wrist.
Marcus has been quite cautious and has only taken two rides at the meeting.
It’s My Turn won the 2016 Grade 1 Cape Derby over 2000m and the only reason he gets a second crack at a race with the same name is in KwaZulu-Natal you can run in this event as many times as you want as long as you have four legs and a high enough merit rating.
As it is run on weight-for-age terms It’s My Turn comes out as the best handicapped runner.
He has not run over this trip but he has performed well in the Durban July over 2200m against much stronger company so he is expected to see it out.
The only concern is that he has not won a race since that Cape Derby win in January 2016 and re- mains a two-time winner.
Hopefully he has not forgotten where to find the winner’s enclosure.
American Landing is an up- and-coming stayer who is expected to win his share of races over this sort of distance. Brett Crawford’s charge has only raced five times but in his last start he won the Listed East Cape Derby by 5.75 lengths. He is beautifully bred and even though he is 4.5kg under sufferance with It’s My Turn, this son of Dynasty is probably a lot better than his merit rating suggests.
Others with chances are The Slade, last year’s winner Mr Winsome and Forafewdollarsmore.
There is a lot to like about Flichity By Farr who ran second in the Grade 2 SA Oaks over 2450m at Turffontein last month. She indicated the distance would not be a problem and Piere Strydom makes the trip from Johannesburg to ride this daughter of Go Deputy.
One needs to have respect for Girl On The Run who has yet to win over this trip but is one of the most consistent runners around. She finished second in this race last year and as she has been entered for the Durban July, trainer Johan Janse van Vuuren would dearly love to win this event.
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