JACK MILNER: BLAKE has drawn pole position for the Grade 1 Ladbrokes Gold Cup to be run over 3200m at Greyville on Saturday 28 July.
Trainer Dean Kannemeyer and jockey Karl Neisius could have mixed feelings about the draw as Blake tends to come from off the pace and he could find himself having to be ridden early on to retain his position on the rail.
However, if he manages to survive the first 300m Blake could be perfectly positioned to launch his challenge in the straight. He looks decently weighted with 58.5kg to carry.
Sean Tarry and Piere Strydom, having won the Vodacom July on Pomodoro from barrier No 20, would have been relieved when Kolkata drew No 6, while stablemate Aslan, who is also the defending champion, is drawn four. Kolkata had a decent enough warm-up when a 3.25-length third behind Seal in the Grade 2 Gold Vase on Durban July day. Tarry warned that Kolkata would need the outing and the Gold Cup was his mission. He would meet Seal on 1kg better terms, which on paper, is not enough to reverse the outcome but Kolkata should improve markedly on his Gold Vase run.
Mike de Kock has entered Ilsanpietro (drawn No 18), Captain’s Wild (24), Gorongosa (14) and Vettel (7). Vettel ran sixth in the Vodacom Durban July and should appreciate the extra ground, while one can expect a much-improved performance from Irish-bred filly Gorongosa. Ilsanpietro had a superb warm-up run in the Gold Vase, running on late from the back of the field to grab fourth spot.
As far as Captain’s Wild is concerned, De Kock might opt to run him in the Grade 1 Champions Cup as he has drawn No 1 for that event.
Durban July third Chesalon is drawn at No 18 but trainer Mike Bass will be happy that English Garden, who failed in the July, drew No 5.
Eton Square, who finished fourth in the July, is set to carry 54kg and drew barrier No 7.
Declarations for all the feature races take place today at 11am while for all the minor races, they need to be by 11am on Thursday.
LADBROKES GOLD CUP (Grade 1) R1-million 3200m
21 SEAL (G H Van Zyl) 60.0
18 ILSANPIETRO (M F De Kock) 59.0
1 BLAKE (D Kannemeyer) 58.5
13 IN WRITING (D Kannemeyer) 57.5
5 SAGE THRONE (C Scott) 57.5
20 TOP SELLER (V H Marshall) 57.5
24 CAPTAIN’S WILD (M F De Kock) 57.0
4 ASLAN (S G Tarry) 56.5
14 GORONGOSA (M F De Kock) 56.5
11 PRINCESS OF LIGHT (G V Woodruff) 56.0
10 SOUL MASTER (G V Woodruff) 56.0
3 CROC VALLEY (M W Bass) 55.5
7 VETTEL (M F De Kock) 55.5
2 HEYOUNEVERKNOW (C Spies) 55.0
27 PREDESTINATION (J Ramsden) 54.5
26 SUN CITY (C M Bestel) 54.5
9 THANKS JOHN (M W Bass) 54.5
6 KOLKATA (S G Tarry) 54.0
17 GOLDEN PARACHUTE (M W Bass) 53.5
15 CAMPO DE SANTANA (C Spies) 52.5
23 FEEL MY LOVE (G W Ennion) 52.5
25 JEPPE’S REEF (M W Bass) 52.5
12 DOLOMITE (K Naidoo) 52.0
19 KOMATIPOORT (M W Bass) 52.0
16 POSH BOY (C M Bestel) 52.0
22 VENGENCE (J Ramsden) 52.0
CHAMPIONS CUP (Grade 1)(Conditions Race) R700,000 1800m
27 PIERRE JOURDAN (G M Alexander) 57.5
22 THE MOUSEKETEER (S G Tarry) 57.5
16 PRINCESS VICTORIA (G S Kotzen) 57.0
18 CHESALON (M W Bass) 56.5
3 ENGLISH GARDEN (M W Bass) 56.5
17 SOLO TRAVELLER (M F De Kock) 56.5
30 TALES OF BRAVERY (V H Marshall) 56.5
14 TOP SELLER (V H Marshall) 56.5
1 CAPTAIN’S WILD (M F De Kock) 56.0
10 LION IN WINTER (J Ramsden) 56.0
5 SILENT PARTNER (M F De Kock) 56.0
21 GOLD ONYX (S G Tarry) 55.5
29 BAY ROUTE (D Visser) 55.0
11 BEACH BEAUTY (D R Drier) 55.0
20 BLACK WING (B Crawford) 55.0
8 BULSARA (G H Van Zyl) 55.0
2 BUY AND SELL (S G Tarry) 55.0
19 CASTLETHORPE (M W Bass) 55.0
15 FABIANI (G S Kotzen) 55.0
28 GALANTHUS (T Zackey) 55.0
6 GALILEO’S DESTINY (M F De Kock) 55.0
23 ROMAN WALL (S G Tarry) 55.0
9 RUSHING WIND (M W Bass) 55.0
7 ETON SQUARE (G H Van Zyl) 54.0
4 GOLDEN CHATEAU (M F De Kock) 54.0
26 MASTER PLAN (G W Ennion) 54.0
13 ASTRO NEWS (G W Ennion) 53.5
25 WHITELINE FEVER (S G Tarry) 53.5
24 ILHA BELA (M F De Kock) 52.5