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Trainer Vaughan Marshall will be seeking a fifth win in the G1 Cape Guineas when he saddles likely favourite Tap O’ Noth in Saturday’s Forus sponsored classic at Kenilworth.
A son of Marshall’s Cape Guineas winner Captain Al (who sired last year’s Vaughan Marshall trained winner William Longsword), Tap O’ Noth has won three of his four career outings and impressed last time out when beating Guineas rivals Undercover Agent, Cot Campbell and Sir Frenchie in the G3 Cape Classic.

A wide draw of 15 appears to be the well bred colt’s biggest obstacle in Saturday’s 1600m feature.

Rocket Countdown has won three in a row, unbeaten since being gelded, and caused a 36-1 shock when landing the traditional Cape Guineas prep, the G2 Selangor Cup, last time out. On that occasion he had all of Guineas rivals White River, Do It Again, Undercover Agent and Captain And Master well held, and must have a shot on that last effort.

Visiting trainers Sean Tarry and Mike de Kock saddle five runners between them, with Tarry’s trio including Wonderwall, Captain And Master and Purple Diamond, and de Kock sending out Like A Panther and Sir David Baird.
Wonderwall, comfortably the top rated runner in Saturday’s race, won the G2 Joburg Spring Challenge two starts back but was well beaten in the Lanzerac Ready To Run Stakes and has a poor draw to overcome. His stable mate Captain And Master, a close and unlucky third in last season’s G2 Golden Horseshoe, was nearly three lengths adrift of the winner in the Selangor Cup last time out.

Third of the Tarry runners Purple Diamond looks held on current form, while the pick of the De Kock runners looks to be progressive gelding Sir David Baird an impressive winner of the Listed KZN Guineas Trial but who takes a big jump in class. His well bred stable mate, Like A Panther, impressed when winning two in a row but struggled in the G2 Investec Dingaans (albeit in yielding going and from a wide draw). Another by Captain Al, Like A Panther is nicely drawn in three and gets the services of top jockey Anton Marcus.

Do It Again impressed when winning his first two races on the bounce and ran on impressively for third in the G2 Selangor Cup last time out. The gelding looked green in the Selangor Cup and could well have scope for great improvement here.
His stable mates Cot Campbell and Sir Frenchie both look held by Tap O’ Noth on their last runs but are better drawn than that Marshall trained runner.

With the scratching of Eyes Wide Open, Pack Leader is the sole runner for trainer Glen Kotzen, whose Gold Standard finished second in the 2016 Cape Guineas. An impressive winner of the Listed Racing Association Stakes, and third in the Lanzerac Ready To Run Stakes, the well bred son of Philanthropist has a poor draw of 14 to overcome.

Trainer Brett Crawford has a strong hand with all of Bold Respect, White River and Undercover Agent, with riding arrangements suggesting Bold Respect is the stable elect. A son of Bold Silvano, Bold Respect was just run out of it late last time out in the Lanzerac Ready To Run Stakes, when having to overcome a poor draw. Better drawn on Saturday, he looks a definite contender here. White River, despite trying to bite a rival, impressed with a strong second in the Selangor Cup last time out, while Undercover Agent is another with a chance if he repeats his smart second in the Cape Classic two starts back.

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