DAVID THISELTON attended the Vodacom Durban July gallops at Greyville on Thursday, 23 June and writes: The usual good crowd attended the gallops, enjoying the traditional coffee and sticky buns on top of watching top class thoroughbreds being put through their paces.
The big race favourite Igugu was particularly impressive, cruising into a narrow lead over her July stable companion Flirtation and maintaining that lead with ears pricked. (see headline photo and photo below, Flirtation left, Igugu right, replay of the gallop in Featured Video Section, refresh screen several times if needed).
Others that put up particularly eye-catching work were Bravura, Lion In Winter, Past Master, English Garden and Super Storm. All three trainers associated with this latter group, Joey Ramsden, Darryl Hodgson and Mike Bass were very pleased with their charges.
Justin Snaith, on the other hand, was frustrated with the very laid back July third favourite, Run For It, who put in his usual lazy effort. Snaith had wanted him to go a good gallop and said afterwards, “This horse is taking the micky.”
However, he is almost down to his ideal racing weight, so is sure to be right on the day and top horses like him invariably love big crowds and rise to the occasion.
Bravura (left) galloped with Predestination.
The 2009 July winner Big City Life drew clear of his companion Thunder Creek, who was carrying the same weight, and although he didn’t convince all pundits on course, Glen Kotzen and jockey Andrew Fortune declared themselves “delighted” with the workout.
Big City Life sported blinkers and Fortune said the colt’s work had improved as a result. A decision was to be taken after the gallops whether to declare blinkers for the big race.
Bulsara looked a bit above himself, but his fancied stable companion The Apache put in some nice work and there was no mistaking how good he is.
Castlethorpe worked well and his companion, the Garden Province contender Croc Valley, really caught the eye.
Black Wing strode out very nicely and seemed to know he was at his favourite track.
Galileo’s Destiny, working with July stable companion Safwan, did very well and was keen to do more than asked of him as it took Kevin Shea a while to pull him up.
Safwan (left) and Galileo’s Destiny.
Super Storm put up an eye-catching gallop that had trainer Mike Bass nodding contentedly. Big race rider MJ Byleveld barely moved a muscle as Super Storm worked effortlessly past working companion Fort Vogue.
Captain’s Wild worked with Campanajo contender Ilsanpietro and neither did anything wrong.
Emerald Cove worked on her own and also put in satisfying work.
The Sangoma, Thembisane Mdlolo, threw the bones at Greyville, as is the tradition, and predicted that the order of finish would be English Garden, Bravura and Safwan. The traditional July Beans have The Apache out ahead at the moment.
HORSE RIDER DIST COMPANION TIME 800m 400m
PAST MASTER G Schlechter 1400 Foreign Sovereign 47.50 22.62
BIG CITY LIFE A Fortune 1600 Thunder Creek 48.31 23.31
BRAVURA A Marcus 1800 Predestination 47.31 22.94
CAPTAIN’S WILD R Simons 1600 Ilsanpietro 47.79 24.20
LION IN WINTER G Hatt 1800 Gallop Alone 47.94 22.33
IGUGU A Delpech 1600 FLIRTATION 47.30 23.13
RUN FOR IT F Coetzee 1200 Dance with Al 48.78 25.34
THE APACHE R Danielson 1400 Gallop Alone 49.56 24.40
BULSARA B Fayd’herbe 1400 Gallop Alone 48.62 24.66
ENGLISH GARDEN K Neisius 1400 Golden Parachute 48.03 23.16
FLIRTATION G Lerena 1600 IGUGU 47.12 23.25
BLACK WING K Shea 1800 Gallop Alone 47.78 23.56
SAFWAN B Jacobson 1600 GALILEO’S DESTINY 47.31 23.22
CASTLETHORPE K Teetan 1400 Croc Valley 47.75 22.27
EMERALD COVE F Coetzee 1600 Gallop Alone 48.13 23.60
GALILEO’S DESTINY K Shea 1600 SAFWAN 47.33 23.16
SUPER STORM M Byleveld 1400 Fort Vogue 48.12 23.07
PIERRE JOURDAN Gary Alexander D David 1400 Radiant Rock (D Smith) + Fortnums (W/rider)
HAPPY LANDING Joe Soma Workrider 600 Gallop Alone on Sand