THIS is the weekend racing fans in the Eastern Cape have been waiting for. The festival of racing, scheduled for today and Sunday at Fairview, could be the biggest in many years.
The festival has been marketed aggressively. It is about quality racing, but there is also the prawn festival, entertainment for the whole family, fashion and lots of prizes to be won that makes this a huge party.
Racing fans are in for a treat and the party will be much bigger if a Port Elizabeth stable wins the big one on Sunday.
The Recall East Cape Derby was last won by a PE-trained horse in 2009. Lizard’s Desire, trained by Mitch Wiese, took the honours at Arlington on that occasion.
Since then this race has been dominated by the Cape Town raiders. The visitors are back in full force and, once again, it will be tough for a Port Elizabeth runner to win.
The field does not look that strong this year, but it is still competitive and the PE horses may just have a better chance this time around.
This weekend usually delivers champions for the future. Lizard’s Desire went on to nearly win the richest race in the world, and today’s Dahlia Plate race is also the breeding ground of stars.
In A Rush is a former winner of the Dahlia Plate, with Bold Silvano and The Plunderer runners-up on other occasions. Bold Silvano went on to win the Vodacom Durban July. This indicates that we can look forward to some fine racing.
See if you can spot the future stars in the Dahlia Plate and the Derby, because it is not always the winners that go on to achieve bigger things.
Back to the Derby on Sunday. It is not easy to pick the PE horse with the best winning credentials, but King of Indians might be the one. The pressure will be on jockey Aldo Domeyer to pull it off with a tactical ride.
Of the visitors, Desert Swirl looks the right one.
It should be a great betting weekend. We tipped you a nice little PA last week and will give it another go.
Punters’ Pal’s tips for Fairview:
PICK 6 (R1920)
– Punters’ Pal