Saturday’s Kenilworth race-meeting was dominated by long-shots, with just a single tote favourite prevailing on the eight race card, with racing taking place in miserable and rainy conditions.
When 18-1 shot Tiger Roll downed 8-10 favourite Queensbarns to win the first race for trainer Piet Botha and jockey Oswald Noach, the writing was on the wall for favourite backers, with longshots going on to land races three, four, and eight and Spirit Festival (race seven) was the only tote favourite to oblige on the card.
Despite favourites going missing throughout the day (the course was officially listed as good to soft despite heavy rains having fallen the night before), a few first-timers put up some eye catching performances, with the Brett Crawford trained Late At Night making a big impression when romping home to win Saturday’s second race, the Play Soccer 6,10 and 13 Maiden Juvenile Plate in style.
A two-year-old son of short-lived G1 SA Nursery winner Soft Falling Rain, the Wilgerbosdrift & Mauritzfontein bred Late At Night stormed home down the inside under visiting rider Randall Simons to score a facile 3.5 length win on debut.
Like the fellow Ng owned Armando, Late At Night looks destined for a Hong Kong campaign.
Bred to enjoy further than the 1200m of Saturday’s race, the colt is out of former G2 Gold Circle Oaks runner up Clandestine, who herself is a full-sister to deceased Horse Of The Year and outstanding sire Dynasty.
Another well-bred first timer to put up a smart looking win on Saturday was the Dean Kannemeyer trained Templeton, with the latter providing Randall Simons with a quick-fire double after Simons won on Late At Night.
By the aforementioned Dynasty, the 2yo Templeton stormed home to get up close to home and win the Betting World 087 741 2777 by two lengths going away. Bred and owned by Varsfontein Stud, the classically bred Templeton is a half-sister to this season’s G3 Fillies Mile winner (and former R5 000 000 yearling buy) Ghaalla.
When Arctic Drift, yet another first-timer to win on Saturday, scored a hard-fought three-parts of a length win in the TABonline.co.za Maiden Juvenile Plate, his rider Anthony Andrews received a R1 500 fine after signing an admission of guilt for striking the What A Winter gelding more than 12 times during the race.