Joburg’s oldest and greatest race, the Summer Cup, takes place at Turffontein on Saturday.
Here is everything you need to know about the 19 horses running in the feature event, Race 7.
1 – WILLIAM ROBERTSON 60kg DRAW – 3
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Trainer: Corne Spies Jockey: Marco van Rensburg
The highest rated runner in the field who has a lot of class but is suspect over the distance. His trainer believes his charge will see it out if given a patient ride and he did run a cracker when fourth in the Victory Moon over 1,800m. He has the ability to challenge a field of this nature and will be in the thick of things in the latter part of the race. One for Quartets.
Runs: 19 Wins: 6 Places: 9 Earnings: R1,184,125
2 – ASTRIX 60kg DRAW – 11
Trainer: Johan Janse van Vuuren Jockey: JP van der Merwe
Caused a major upset when winning the Grade 1 Premier’s Champions Challenge over 2,000m at Turffontein, beating Sparkling Water by 0.10 lengths. But while the result may have shocked many, the Vercingetorix gelding had finished 0.20 lengths behind Sparkling Water in last year’s Victory Moon and was 1.5kg better off. Not without a chance.
Runs: 36 Wins: 7 Places: 15 Earnings: R2,167,850
ALSO READ: Big money to be won on Summer Cup day
3 – MK’S PRIDE 59kg DRAW – 6
Trainer: Mike de Kock Jockey: Randall Simons
A winner up to 1,600m this five-year-old has yet to prove he can be effective over further. He did run over the course and distance in the Grade 1 Premier’s Champions Challenge but was beaten 4.30 lengths by Astrix. Looks held by that winner and Sparkling Water so has his work cut out to place in this event.
Runs: 24 Wins: 9 Places: 8 Earnings: R2,107,100
4 – SPARKLING WATER 59kg DRAW – 5
Trainer: Mike de Kock Jockey: S’manga Khumalo
Another ultra-consistent De Kock-trained runner who is as honest as the day is long. Her only unplaced run came in last year’s Summer Cup where she ended up too far back from a wide draw but still produced the fastest 400m to finish. That is something no doubt this year’s Durban July winner would love to correct this time around. Massive runner.
Runs: 17 Wins: 7 Places: 9 Earnings: R4,379,125
5 – SAFE PASSAGE 58.5kg DRAW – 10
Trainer: Mike de Kock Jockey: Muzi Yeni
This four-year-old son of Silvano can lay claim to being the best three-year-old in the country last season with wins in the Grade 1 Daily News 2000 and the Grade 2 Dingaans and Gauteng Guineas, coupled with a third place in the Grade 1 Durban July. He had an excellent warm-up run in the Grade 2 Charity Mile and will be right there at the finish. The horse to beat.
Runs: 11 Wins: 6 Places: 4 Earnings: R2,468,562
6 – PUERTO MANZANO 58kg DRAW – 7
Trainer: Johan Janse van Vuuren Jockey: Keagan de Melo
With a top jockey up and from a stable in form, he cannot leave out of one’s calculations. He is in good nick which he demonstrated when second behind stable companion Bingwa in the Grade 2 Charity Mile. He has yet to win beyond 1800m although he has placed over 2200m at Greyville in weaker company. One for Trifectas and Quartets.
Runs: 18 Wins: 5 Places: 8 Earnings: R999,550
7 – NEBRAAS 57kg DRAW – 12
Trainer: Sean Tarry Jockey: Piere Strydom
All of his feature-race wins have been over further, but he was victorious over 2,000m early in his career. There was a lot to like about his run last time in the Grade 3 Victory Moon Stakes over 1,800m when a 2.50-length fifth behind Litigation and is now 3kg better off. Trainer has won four of the last five editions and has a legendary jockey who has won the race four times.
Runs: 23 Wins: 7 Places: 10 Earnings: R1,137,375
ALSO READ: Strydom gets win 5,500 — and now for the Summer Cup
8 – ARAGOSTA 55.5kg DRAW – 15
Trainer: Mike de Kock Jockey: Richard Fourie
Grade 1 SA Derby winner and also placed third in the Grade 1 Daily News 2000, but finished unplaced in the Durban July, Gold Cup and Victory Moon Stakes. No doubt he will come on with that run and has a top jockey up but will need to improve on his last couple of runs and looks held by stablemates Safe Passage and Sparkling Water. Could place.
Runs: 12 Wins: 4 Places: 3 Earnings: R1,471,375
9 – RED SAXON 55.5kg DRAW – 17
Trainer: Joe Soma Jockey: Julius Mariba
Winner of the G1 SA Classic over 1,800m, beating Safe Passage by a neck. He was also second to Mike de Kock’s charge in Grade 2 Dingaans. Did not do well when raiding KZN but was subsequently gelded and showed he had regained his sparkle when fourth in the Charity Mile. Clearly needed that run and will come on. Well weighted and is a serious contender.
Runs: 10 Wins: 2 Places: 4 Earnings: R1,131,250
10 – SECOND BASE 55.5kg DRAW – 18
Trainer: Johan Janse van Vuuren Jockey: Gavin Lerena
Won the Grade 2 Colorado King Stakes over the course and distance in March so he will definitely see out the trip but has not placed in six races since. Based on his 11th place in the Victory Moon Stakes the five-year-old gelding has a lot to find on many of those who finished ahead of him. Trainer and jockey in form so could well run into the places.
Runs: 25 Wins: 7 Places: 7 Earnings: R1,211,900
11 – ZILLZAAL 55kg DRAW – 4
Trainer: Sean Tarry Jockey: Louis Mxothwa
Winner of the Summer Cup in 2019 when jumping from gate 15, the seven-year-old has not been at his best lately, but he is not out of it. He does have the ability to show up on the big days, and is expected to run better than in his first two outings of the season.
Runs: 28 Wins: 5 Places: 11 Earnings: R2,391,525
12 – DIVINE ODYSSEY 54kg DRAW – 9
Trainer: Johan Janse van Vuuren Jockey: Chase Maujean
Four wins during an extended stay in the Eastern Cape has definitely boosted this eight-year-old’s confidence and helped ensure that he qualified for this race. His two runs back on the Highveld were slightly disappointing and he will probably be hoping for minor money at best.
Runs: 47 Wins: 10 Places: 15 Earnings: R1,561,950
ALSO READ: Three trainers dominate Summer Cup field
13 – LIGHT OF THE MOON 54kg DRAW – 13
Trainer: B/Y Botes / Vosloo Jockey: D De Gouveia
A very hard worker, and consistent performer, this young filly could surprise. Runner-up in both the Oaks and the Woolavington in KwaZulu-Natal earlier in the year, there’s no question that she can go the distance. A place finish is not impossible even though she meets the strongest field of her career.
Runs: 12 Wins: 4 Places: 4 Earnings: R638,375
14 – PYROMANIAC 54kg DRAW – 19
Trainer: Sean Tarry Jockey: Calvin Habib
Attempts this distance for the first time but on pedigree this four-year-old Silvano gelding he should stay well. Unplaced in three attempts at Grade 1 level, but may well start improving now and is not without a chance of finishing in the money.
Runs: 12 Wins: 3 Places: 3 Earnings: R400,250
15 – SHANGO 54kg DRAW – 1
Trainer: Sean Tarry Jockey: Rachel Venniker
A difficult runner to judge due to his inconsistency. Is expected to do better than his seventeenth place finish in the Summer Cup last year, but not expected to make the Quartet, despite jumping from pole position.
Runs: 30 Wins: 5 Places: 11 Earnings: R907,750
16 – SUPER SILVANO 54kg DRAW – 8
Trainer: Brett Crawford Jockey: Kabelo Matsunyane
This six-year-old has had three decent runs at altitude since relocating to the Highveld at the beginning of the year. His only attempt at Grade 1 level saw him finish just 3-lengths behind Golden Ducat, but that was in February 2020. Could be the dark horse here.
Runs: 33 Wins: 4 Places: 14 Earnings: R649,900
17 – LITIGATION 54kg DRAW – 2
Trainer: Sean Tarry Jockey: Philasande Mxoli
Fresh off a Grade 3 win in the Victory Moon Stakes over 1,800m with Mxoli in the saddle, he looks primed to take his career to new heights with the jockey retaining the ride. From gate 2 he should have no problem settling well. Expect a solid effort.
Runs: 15 Wins: 5 Places: 5 Earnings: R601,250
18 – JAIMALA 54kg DRAW – 14
Trainer: Ashley Fortune Jockey: Ryan Munger
The five-year-old comes into the race in red-hot form, having won four of his last seven outings. Last year Fortune surprised when Majestic Mozart finished runner-up in the Summer Cup and this year her solitary runner could do the same.
Runs: 20 Wins: 6 Places: 8 Earnings: R373,950
19 – RAISEAHALLELUJAH 54kg DRAW – 16
Trainer: Candice Dawson Jockey: Raymond Danielson
This Querari gelding is in his prime and in the best form of his life, as attested by his three wins and four runner-up finishes from his last seven runs. Don’t be fooled by his official rating, as he might be much better than the handicapper rates him.
Runs: 19 Wins: 6 Places: 8 Earnings: R463,562