Work Riders Challenge heads for thriller

Work Riders Challenge heads for thriller


Jack Milner: The final leg of the Work Riders’ Challenge heads for a thrilling showdown at Turffontein as leader Samuel Mosia and second-­placed Francis Semela go toe ­to­ toe for the R20,000 first prize.

At this stage Mosia has 79 points and is just 15 points ahead of Semela with Joe Gwingwizha another 20 points further back in third. Both Mosia and Semela have a load of good rides and should dominate the finish.

Interestingly fourth­-placed Chamu Mabaya has some plum rides but he is on 39 points and might be left with too much to do. However, there is R5,000 up for grabs for the best rider on the day.

Mosia will have to be at his best if he is going to maintain his lead as his chief rival has some very good rides as well. The opening race could set the tone for the day as only 0.80 lengths separated Time To Be Great and Hever Castle in their last start over 1000m at the Vaal, with Semela and Mosia riding the pair. Hever Castle went off 14­10 favourite on that occasion but neither could match In The Loop in the closing stages.

Time To Be Great held a big lead going through the 400m mark while Hever Castle finished better so Mosia will be hoping to reverse the placings.

Mosia does have a big advantage in Race 5, a Maiden Plate over 2000m, where he rides Aventurine for Sean Tarry. This three-­year-­old daughter of Brave Tin Soldier has been expensive to follow as she tends to find something to beat her every time but on this occasion the opposition looks particularly weak and this could be her day.

Semela could have the advantage in Race 7 where he is aboard Australian­bred Khetiwe for the Mike Azzie yard. This three-­year-­old filly has only raced twice, finishing a 1.30-­length third behind Amazing Var on debut over 1400m but failing in her second run when beaten 6.25 lengths by Super Commuter. She has not raced since February but should be competitive if fit.

Mabaya looks likely to ride three favourites. In Race 2 he is on Blue Diamond Road for Alec Laird, in Race 4 he will be aboard Rain In Africa for Mike de Kock and in Race 6 he is carded to ride Sheet Weaver, also for Laird.

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