ERTIJAAL (photo), unbeaten in all four starts, has been priced up at 1-1 to win the R2-million SA Classic (Grade 1) over 1800m on the Turffontein standside track on Saturday.
Ertijaal is reportedly putting in some good work at home and no doubt looks the horse they all have to beat, but he does have a No 16 draw. Gavin Lerena has retained the ride.
Betting World Gauteng Guineas winner Harry’s Son is the only runner capable of picking up the SA Triple Crown and he is quoted as the 4-1 second favourite. Like Ertijaal, the Paul Lafferty-trained runner has landed a very wide draw and he has yet to prove he goes further than 1600m. Piere Strydom takes the ride once again.
No doubt Lafferty will be hoping the rain stays away on Saturday.
French Navy ran a cracker in the Guineas, flying up late to run just 0.50 lengths behind Harry’s Son. Jockey Raymond Danielson said French Navy took a lot of coaxing before he finally got going and there is little doubt that, off a better draw and the extra 200m, Sean Tarry’s charge should be even more competitive in this event.
Forest Fox was another to finish strongly in the Guineas and ended up in third spot. Trainer Paul Peter has engaged Anton Marcus to ride the son of Dupont and he is quoted at 8-1.
There also look to be some good outsiders. Mljet is quoted at 25-1. In the Guineas he had to overcome a wide draw, was chased up on the turn to lead and still was only beaten 6.50 lengths. From a good draw this time, jockey MJ Byleveld should be able to get a good position and allow his mount to settle.
He is a good performer and looks a decent Place bet at least.
Siren’s Call and Same Jurisdiction have been priced up joint favourites at 5-2 to win the R1-million Wilgerbosdrift SA Fillies Classic. Siren’s Call is the runner carrying Wilgerbosdrift Triple Tiara hopes after having won the Fillies Guineas.
However, Same Jurisdiction had the worst of the draw and the worst of the luck in the Guineas and this time, with a good draw and experience of the track, that could all change. She also will have Marcus in the irons this time.
Some good value could lie in the De Kock coupling of Estidraaj and Pine Princess who are quoted at 10-1 and 14-1 respectively.
Current Classic Day betting:
SA Classic: 1-1 Ertijaal 4-1 Harry’s Son 9-2 French Navy 8-1 Forest Fox 16-1 Mutamakkin 25-1 Mljet, Deputy Jud 33-1 Prince of Orange, Mac De Lago, Greek Legend 40-1 Illuminati, Amsterdam 50-1 Finchatton, Rampant Ice 66-1 Diesel Jet, Arniston
Wilgerbosdrift SA Fillies Classic: 5-2 Same Jusrisdiction, Siren’s Call 5-1 Trophy Wife, Smart Call 8-1 Banbury 10-1 Estidraaj 14-1 Pine Princess 16-1 Tamaanee 20-1 Sensible Lover 50-1 Zrinski