South African Racing Preview on a big day at Turffontein

There is a big day of racing at Turffontein on Saturday

Horsetrakker marks your card for a huge day of racing in South Africa at Turffontein.

It is a ten-race card that includes the Grade 2 South African Oaks (1:40pm), the Grade 1 Chestnut Stakes (2:15pm) and the Grade 1 South African Derby (2:50pm).


One of South Africa’s leading trainers Sean Tarry has major chances in the first four races today

Multiple bets are advised on his runners.

I have also selected runners of his in other races. Selections are given after every race.


Leading trainer Sean Tarry



10:20am – RACE 1 MAIDEN PLATE    1600m

A Workriders’ race, which are great initiatives to give the unsung heroes a chance on the big stage.

Typically, it is best to follow the money in these race-types.

Selection –  Senescence (Sean Tarry / Joe Gwingwizha) – finished second on debut over a shorter trip

Next Best-    Acorn Alley


10:50am – RACE 2   Juvenile Plate 1100m

Selection – Dubawi Princess (Sean Tarry / Luke Ferraris) – blinkered for the first time today

Next best – Due Diligence


11:20am – RACE 3 JUVENILE PLATE   (F & M)  1100m

A strong juvenile race

Selection – Slalom Queen (Sean Tarry / Lyle Hewitson)

Next Best –  Portico


11:55am – MAIDEN PLATE    (F & M)      1600m

Immeasurable has reportedly been working well and if he brings his A game will be hard to beat. The worry is that he can keep his best for himself. A cautious view is taken.

Selection  –  Immeasurable (Sean Tarry / Gavin Lerena)

Next Best  –  Crank it Up


Top jockey Gavin Lerena


12:30pm –  RACE 5   MAIDEN PLATE      1600m

Selection  — Elusive Swann (Paul Matchett / Kabelo Matsunyane) – Unplaced both starts so far but improving

Next Best – Lord Melbourne



1:05pm – RACE 6 Pinnacle Stakes  (open)  1600m

A competitive race with a number of runners holding chances.

Querari Ferrari had been ultra-consistent before the lockdown and had been placed behind two superstar fillies in Summer Pudding and Lady of Steel . If she performs to that level, she’s the one to beat.

Dangers lurk in the form of Wild Date, Return Flight and Vitulla.

Vitulla is burdened with topweight but should go close.


Selection —  Querari Ferrari (Erico Verdonese / Luke Ferraris)

Next Best –   Vitulla



1:40pm – Race 7 SOUTH AFRICAN OAKS    2450m GROUP 2

Summer Pudding puts her huge reputation on the line today. Unbeaten in five races, this classy filly has been doing her best work late in races, which indicates that today’s step up in trip will hold no fears. Has the assistance of world-class former champion jockey Gavin Lerena.

Victoria Paige ran a close third to Summer Pudding in the fillies’ Guineas. She came from way off the pace and met trouble in running on a couple of occasions in that race. Has to have a serious chance with the extra trip today.


Selection  — Victoria Paige (NAP) – Sean Tarry / Luke Ferraris

Next Best – Summer Pudding


2:15pm – Race 8 HORSE CHESTNUT 1600m GROUP 1

The brilliant Hawwaam aims to put his reputation back in place. This is his optimum trip and he ran like a non-stayer in his last two races.

He should win today and could be a value bet following his previous defeats.

Dangers lurk from his stablemates Queen Supreme and Soqrat.

Queen Supreme gets a fillies’ allowance and could give the fav most to do. Soqrat is a proven Group 1 performer but has it to do if Hawaam turns up with his A-game.

The fly in the ointment could come from the champion trainer Sean Tarry. He saddles Tierra Del Fuego, who has been working well and will give a good account today.


Selection – Hawwaam – Mike De Kock / Callan Murray

Next Best – Queen Supreme / Tierro Del Fuego



Got The Greenlight has a huge chance of Derby glory today. Showed a fine turn of foot to win the SA Classic last time and should be up to staying the extra distance today.

Danger comes from Shango, who looks like a top stayer in the making and had an interrupted preparation last time . Will strip fitter today and has a big chance.

The other major player is Youcanthurrylove with the brilliant Smanga Khumalo on board. He shows all the signs that he needs a longer trip and can be there at the business end today.


SELECTION : Got The Greenlight – Joey Soma / Callan Murray

NEXT BEST : Youcanthurrylove / Shango (EW)


3:25pm – RACE 10 PINNACLE STAKE 2000M 1m2f

An ultra-competitive finale to a very strong card.

Chitengo holds all the aces. She is a big improver in 2020 and has benefited from Gavin Lerena’s brilliant front-running tactics.

Gavin can’t do today’s weight but she will still be hard to beat if forcing the pace with top man Khumalo on board.

Drops back in trip today but blessed with a good turn of foot should go very close. The De Kock-trained Alibi Guy is very much an unknown quantity.

Three-from-three has been off the track for 11 months but has to be respected owing to his superb trainer. There is definite substance to his form.

Watch the market for clues on his return to the track.

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*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article