Bonginkosi Inkosi: We’ve always had a gut-feel about Hawwaam.
While we were disappointed that Soqrat was out of the Dingaans, the gut-feel was that this horse is better so we weren’t too fazed.
This horse just does everything right, he really is a proper horse – he is a proper athlete.
These were the praises sung by trainer Mike de Kock following Hawwaam’s triumph in the Grade 2 Dingaans where the half-brother to Rainbow Bridge demolished opposition, winning by an extending 3.40 lengths under a confident jockey in Gavin Lerena.
He did all this on the second time of asking and despite the fact he was shockingly drawn at No 13 in a 15-horse field. He looks a superstar in the making and his conditioner believes he can win anywhere in the world.
Interestingly, following his latest victory Lerena said he felt it would be best to not stretch the colt further than 1600m and that’s exactly what he gets when the Pick 6 banker lines up in Sunday’s Grade 3 Tony Ruffel Stakes over 1400m on the Turffontein Standside track.
This three-year-old is weighted to easily register a third consecutive win and the good news is, that last form line has worked out beautifully, producing four winners.
Hawwaam’s wide No 7 draw in this eight-horse field shouldn’t raise too many red flags because he has got the better of terrible draws in both starts.
It is no secret that trainer Mike Azzie rates Reach For The Line highly and the three-year-old’s latest triumph when making a mockery of rivals to win by 3.50 lengths also under Lerena proved that he is far better than his penultimate start when finishing 12.50 behind Hawwaam.
He is, however, unlikely to turn the form around with De Kock’s charge because they have met twice and Azzie’s charge has failed to get the better Hawwaam both times.
In fact, Hawwaam was extremely green on debut and hung in badly in the dying stages but still managed to skip a length clear in the controversial no whip race.
You won’t get rich but take Swingers and Exactas featuring the pair and maybe float them with the field in your Quartet.
The jockey-trainer combination of Lerena and De Kock could register a feature double courtesy of each way prospect Storm Destiny when she lines up in the Grade 3 Three Troikas Stakes over 1400m. She wasn’t disgraced in her most recent performance when beaten 2.50 lengths into fifth by stablemate Ghaalla in the Fillies Mile.
She will be at peak fitness on Sunday considering this is her third start after a lengthy layoff, plus she will relish the drop back in trip.
Storm Destiny is drawn at No 9 and shoulders a massive 5kg less than her main danger Return Flight who finished 0.05 lengths ahead in their latest encounter. In Return Flight’s defence, that was her first run in four months – expect tremendous improvement.
Pick 6 players, ensure you also add in Ronnie’s Candy who not only beat both Storm Destiny and Return Flight last time out but she also tops the best-weighted column. The only concern she has to overcome the worst draw!