Top Field Expected in Rising Sun Gold Challenge - 06-10-10
June 10 - Although South Africa is firmly in the grip of 'football fever' as the host of the epic 2010 World Cup which kicks off Friday, horse racing fans can still get their fix with the Rising Sun Gold Challenge (Gr 1) on Saturday.
Scheduled to be contested over 1600m at Clairwood Racecourse in picturesque Cape Town, the R750,000 Rising Sun Gold Challenge has attracted a field of 10 top weight-for-age thoroughbreds, including favourite Pocket Power.
Trained by Mike Bass, 7-year-old Pocket Power has become something of a legend in South Africa having won a slew of big races, including January's prestigious R1-million L'Ormarins Queens Plate (Gr 1) for the fourth straight time.
The son of the awesome Jet Master, Pocket Power may be nearing the end of his career, but he likely has a victory or two left in him. On Saturday he'll start from post 1 at Clairwood under respected jockey Bernard Fayd'Herbe.
Another top-rated runner that will take to the turf on Saturday is superb J&B Met (Gr 1) runner-up, Mother Russia, a 4-year-old filly from the stables of Mike de Kock, one of South Africa's premier and most respected trainers.
Mother Russia will be accompanied in the Rising Sun Gold Challenge by her stablemate Rudra, a 5-year-old horse and previous Summer Cup (Gr 1) winner. With these two runners, de Kock has a better than good chance at a win.
However, they'll have to contend with Big City Life, the 4-year-old colt who won last year's Durban July Handicap, South Africa's biggest race. According to trainer Glen Kotzen, he is currently in excellent form and could be a goer.
Here is the full list of entries for Saturday's R750,000 Rising Sun Gold Challenge at Clairwood in Cape Town:
- Pocket Power - 36 Career Races; 19 wins; 13 places. Career Earnings: R9,530,420
- Tropical Empire (AUS) - 34 Career Races; 10 wins; 11 places. Career Earnings: R1,138,910
- Kapil - 26 Career Races; 8 wins; 9 places. Career Earnings: R1,337,040
- Rudra - 17 Career Races; 4 wins; 10 places. Career Earnings: R2,282,920
- Smart Banker - 21 Career Races; 11 wins; 4 places. Career Earnings: R3,723,380
- Big City Life - 16 Career Races; 7 wins; 5 places. Career Earnings: R3,431,975
- Regal Ransom - 14 Career Races; 7 wins; 5 places. Career Earnings: R1,594,500
- Fabiani - 15 Career Races; 3 wins; 7 places. Career Earnings: R552,850
- Blue Tiger - 34 Career Races; 5 wins; 21 places. Career Earnings: R1,136,580
- Mother Russia - 22 Career Races; 12 wins; 8 places. Career Earnings: R3,470,500
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