Combat Leader to Execute Fort Beluga

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Combat Leader to Execute Fort Beluga

<p>MEL KAPLAN<br /> ALTHOUGH six years of age Combat Leader has made amazing improvement since moving to Glen Kotzen&rsquo;s KwaZulu Natal stables and has posted three wins and a 0.75-length second in his three runs. All four races were over 1200m with two at Clairwood where he will take on eight rivals in Race 7, a MR 93 Handicap over the trip on Sunday afternoon.<br /> <br /> Photo: Glen Kotzen trains Combat Leader.</p>

<p>Raymond Danielson rode him to victory over the Scottsville 1200m in his comeback run after the rest where, after being backed in to 11-2 from 7-1 he led from shortly after the break to beat Zidane&rsquo;s Gold by 3.50 lengths. Young apprentice Grant van Niekerk has been in the saddle in the three subsequent races. Exactly a month after his winning return, Van Niekerk rode Combat Leader into a good 0.75 length second behind Yarnmaster at this track.<br /> <br /> Two weeks after that run they teamed up again and beat Jet Man by a comfortable 2.25 length, again at Clairwood. His next run, his last as a four-year-old, on 16 July, showed him to be rather gutsy as he fought on gamely under pressure to gain a short-head verdict over useful and in-form Intellectual at Scottsville.&nbsp;<br /> <br /> Execute has few lengths to find on Combat Leader on their latest clash but is 5kg better off at the weights for a beating of 3.75 lengths. Since Combat Leader still appears to be improving, that might just not be enough.&nbsp;<br /> <br /> Fort Beluga has not raced for more than nine months and although he is better over a bit more ground, he has done well in sprints earlier in his career. With the Sean Tarry string in good form he could give the other two a run for their money if a little above himself after the break.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>

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