Champions Season gets underway this weekend with a host of Durban July entries set to step foot on the turf again. The action begins at 11:45 at Greyville on Saturday, while another eight-race program awaits at Turffontein on Sunday. Let’s take a closer look at this weekend’s best bets and exotic tips.
Race 2 – Expeditioner
Without a shadow of a doubt, the best bet on Saturday’s card comes in the form of Expeditioner in Race 2. The 3-year-old gelding from the Candice Dawson stable has found plenty of betting support in the build-up to this weekend, and with Richard Fourie in the irons for the first time, he should be tough to oppose in a relatively weak field. Expeditioner finished 2nd in his last two starts at the Vaal and looks capable of going one better in KZN.
Race 4 – Jet Dark
The Grade 2 Drill Hall Stakes promises to be a classy race over 1400m with Jet Dark standing out as the leading contender. The 4-year-old son of Trippi is drawn widest of all, but his slow gate speed will allow him to tuck into the back of the field early and enjoy running off the pace. Jet Dark finished second behind Kommetdieding in the Met in his last start.
Before that, the Justin Snaith-trained colt won the 2022 Queen’s Plate in January. This will be his first run after a 14-week rest, but he should be good enough to finish first past the post on Saturday.
Race 6 – Pomp And Power
The Grade 2 Guineas for 3-year-olds looks to be one of the fiercest races of the weekend with many believing that the Durban July winner could even come from this field. Richard Fourie and Justin Snaith team up again for the first selection in this race, coming in the form of Pomp And Power. The son of Vercingetorix has won five of his nine races on the track, including all three under Fourie. Pomp And Power is proven over a mile.
Race 7 – Juliet Tango
Race 7 seems like a match race on Saturday between Juliet Tango and Bold Act. The former gets the top selection for the Mike and Adam Azzie stable. Jockey S’manga Khumalo takes the irons and should follow up her recent run with another victory under her belt. Juliet Tango beat Zimbaba by three lengths over a mile last time out and should be better suited to 1400m.
Race 1 – Mover and Shaker
Mover and Shaker was just pipped in his last start. with S’manga Khumalo in the saddle, he should be able to coax that little bit more out of him in the run down to the line. There is a host of first-timers and Mover And Shaker does look to have the best form.
Race 2 – Inevitable
Barring the first-timers, the second race on the card looks like a one-horse race, with Inevitable, who was impressive in her last start, finishing a close-up second. Muzi Yeni retains the ride for the Botes/Vosloo yard and it does look like he will help get out of the maiden ranks here. At 28/10 it does look like a good bet.
Race 3 – Divine Dynasty
Kabelo Matsunyane looks like he can start the first leg of the Pick 6 with the proverbial banker in the form Divine Dynasty. She has finished second in her last three starts and looks like she has bumped the right field here to break her maiden. Banker Divine Dynasty in everything.
Race 4 – Naval Guard
Naval Guard has been impressive when going over the extra in his last two starts, he looks above this class and with Warren Kennedy and Paul Peter in such great form, they should notch up another victory in this contest especially as they the 10-furlong trip again here.