Jack Milner: Flamingo Park takes centre stage on Saturday with the traditional running of their three Non-Black Type feature races – the RA Diamond Stayers over 2200m, the RA Flamingo Mile and the Betting World Sprint over 1000m.
As is usually the case KwaZulu-Natal trainer Kom Naidoo brings runners to this meeting but this year he has arrived with a huge hunting party.
He rarely goes home without a winner or two although it is hard to fathom who are his best runners.
Naidoo has knack of knowing which of his horses will adapt well to the Kimberley sand course so despite what the form may show, one could see massive improvement, on this surface.
It is hard to determine who will fare well on this track but Naidoo’s runners need to be included in Trifectas and Quartets.
The RA Mile carries the biggest stake of the day at R200,000 and the runner who is well in at the weights is Notacademicatall from the Sarel von Willingh Smit stable. This five-year-old has won three races at the course. In six starts over the course and distance he has won once and run second on the other five occasions.
Although he is battling to get his nose down at the right time this son of Elusive Fort is particularly well handicapped with many of his opposition and hopefully jockey Francois Herholdt will be able to get him home.
In his last start Notacademicatall ran a long-head second behind Ahead Of Traffic who then went on to win again. As a result Notacademicatall is now 3kg better off and should be able to turn the tables.
Dodgy Itie won this race last year and has been raced sparingly since then. He was rested for eight months since November and ran well enough in his comeback to end up a six-length fourth behind Ahead Of Traffic.
He should improve on that run and could very well do the double. Marco van Rensburg has been a regular rider on this horse and he is back in the irons on Saturday.
Roy’s Marciano represents the Naidoo yard in the Sprint and despite an 80-day rest could be the horse to beat if he can reproduce his best form. He won this race last year but has not won since.
The Toreador gelding is well backed up by lightly weighted filly Tweed Valley who look’s particularly dangerous with Warren Kennedy in the irons.
However, just in case Roy’s Marciano needs the run it might be worth going with speedy six-year mare Modjadji, who has a record of four wins and three places in seven starts over the course and distance.