Countdown to Winter series

Countdown to Winter series


Rocket Countdown, who sprang a 36-1 shock in the Selangor Cup in November, heads the 16 first entries for the Highlands Stud Winter Guineas over 1600m at Kenilworth on Saturday, 28 April.

The R250,000 Grade 3 race will be run on the summer course with its longer run-in.

Rocket Countdown went on to finish seventh in the R1-million Forus Cape Guineas (Grade 1), beaten little more than four lengths.

He is one of four entries trained by Candice Bass-Robinson whose father, Mike, won the Winter Guineas eight times since 1997, most recently with subsequent Vodacom Durban July winner Marinaresco in 2016.

Rocket Countdown has the worst of the draw at No 16 and has to shoulder a 2kg penalty as a Grade 2 winner.

Doublemint is the only other penalised entrant and he will carry 1kg extra for his success in the Grade 3 BMW Politician Stakes on the day of the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate.

He is trained by Justin Snaith who scored with Readytogorightnow (2013) and African Night Sky 12 months ago when that horse became the first since the mighty Pocket Power in 2006 to win all three legs of the Winter Series. Other notable winners include subsequent July hero Power King (2014), Variety Club (2012) and Act Of War three years later.

The last two were both trained by Joey Ramsden who has the only filly in the race, Made In Hollywood. She is second only to Rocket Countdown on merit ratings and has also been entered for the Listed Sweet Chestnut Stakes on the same card.

The Winter Guineas is a good race for favourites who have been successful in five of the last seven runnings.

The supplementary entry stage is on Friday with declarations the following Monday.

Entries are:
16 ROCKET COUNTDOWN (C Bass-Robinson) 59.0
10 DOUBLEMINT (S J Snaith) 58.0
6 ANCESTRY (J Ramsden) 57.0
11 BEN-HUR (C Bass-Robinson) 57.0
7 CHATUCHAK (W A Nel) 57.0
1 GIMMIE A COHIBA (B Crawford) 57.0
3 LOVE HAPPENS (S J Snaith) 57.0
14 ORAKAL (M J Robinson) 57.0
12 RAINBOW BRIDGE (A E Sands) 57.0
4 RUN RED (W A Nel) 57.0
15 SELAILAI (W A Nel) 57.0
9 TSITSIKAMMA DANCE (B Crawford) 57.0
8 WHAT A JOKER (C Bass-Robinson) 57.0
13 WHAT A SUMMER (C Bass-Robinson) 57.0
5 MADE IN HOLLYWOOD (J Ramsden) 54.5

Supplementary entry
MAN ABOUT TOWN (P Steyn) 57.0


Joey Ramsden holds a strong hand in the Listed Sweet Chestnut Stakes. Top rated Rose in Bloom has drawn midway out at 11, while there will be a lot of interest in the return of Made In Hollywood after almost a year off the track. 

She had top class juvenile form, running close up to both Dutch Philip and Snowdance. 

Entries and draws for the R 150,000 1400m SWEET CHESTNUT STAKES (Listed)

11 ROSE IN BLOOM (J Ramsden) 57.0
14 MERYSAGOS (J Snaith) 57.0
8 CALL TO ACCOUNT (J Ramsden) 57.0
23 PLATINUM CLASS (J Snaith) 56.0
17 TOO PHAT TO FLY (G Kotzen) 56.0
9 MADE IN HOLLYWOOD (J Ramsden) 56.0
13 AWESOMENESS (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
26 RAYA BAYA (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
18 FREEDOM CHARTER (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
15 LOVE SUPREME (B Crawforf 56.0)
6 RINGS AND THINGS (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
24 NANNA ANNA (P Reeves) 56.0
19 ONTENDERHOOKS (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
4 SEQUINED (V Marshall) 56.0
25 OVER AGAIN (R Sheehan) 56.0
22 CAPE CHARLOTTE (P Kruyer) 56.0
12 MARA (D Kannemeyer) 56.0
1 PEARL JAM (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
20 ROYAL FROST (D Kannemeyer) 56.0
3 EVELINA (A Nel) 56.0
2 QUEEN MOIRA (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0
5 ROYAL SENSATION (G Kotzen) 56.0
7 REMEMBER THIS (V Marshall) 56.0
16 EXPEDITE(G Kotzen) 56.0
21 HEMERO (M Robinson) 56.0
10 PERFECTPROPORTIONS (C Bass-Robinson) 56.0

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