Shufoog ready to step up in class

Shufoog ready to step up in class

Jack Milner: The outcome of the R400,000 Cartier Sceptre Stakes over 1200m at Kenilworth could well depend on whether Anton Marcus can get Just Sensual going in time over this distance but Joey Ramsden’s charge might not be able to give start and weight to some useful three-year-olds in this Grade 2 event.

Mike de Kock has a high opinion of Australian-bred Shufoog and she now looks ready to add a feature race of this nature to her record. The daughter of Star Witness cruised to victory on debut over 1160m at Turffontein and then showed her immaturity in her next outing – her first in Cape Town – when just 2.65 lengths behind Just Sensual in the Grade 2 Southern Cross Stakes over 1000m.

She raced again last Saturday in the Need For Speed Sprint (Non-Black Type), again over 1000m and taking on males. She looked all over a winner going into the final 200m but was caught just short of the line and went down 0.30 lengths to Speedpoint. Shufoog had some talented colts behind her and looks ready to win again. She will prefer the extra 200m.

“She has been running over 1000m in her last two starts but she’s definitely better over 1200m and even up to 1400m,” said De Kock. “She’s run some good races against some pretty classy horses and she will be more competitive over this distance.”

The biggest threat could come from another three-year-old in the form of Magical Wonderland. Candice Bass-Robinson’s runner won her first four starts over 1000m and 1200m but then attempted to win the Grade 1 Cape Fillies Guineas over 1600m. She first tried 1400m and finished 4.25 lengths behind Snowdance and was almost the same distance behind the same filly in the Fillies Guineas. It was no disgrace because Snowdance looks to be a top-class individual with a really bright future.

Just Sensual won the 2016 Fillies Guineas but has won over 1200m. The blinkers are back on, she is the best handicapped runner and Anton Marcus is back in the irons, so she cannot be discarded.

Another threat is last year’s winner, Live Life, who looks to be coming back to form after a few months in the doldrums. –


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