Ken Nicol: Classy and versatile filly Helen’s Ideal warmed up nicely for the approaching Winter Series in Cape Town with victory in the headlining FM 92 Handicap over 1250m at Durbanville on Saturday.
After a creditable fifth in the Grade 1 Cape Derby against the colts, this Paul Reeves-trained daughter of Ideal World was the obvious class act here, with the main question being whether this trip may now be a little on the sharp side.
But she was always within touching distance of the speed, and after a bit of a battle with market rival Rush Hour Girl, found extra to win by a cosy length.
Trainer Reeves was satisfied. “She’s still learning to race, this filly, and the 1250 was a nice sharpener for her going into the coming features over further,” he said afterwards.
Race 2 was a MR 82 Handicap over 1600m, where only five horses went to post, but all had highly respectable form.
Late developer Crome Yellow continued his upward trajectory with a hard-fought win over luckless regular bridesmaid Green Archer.
Keagan de Melo has struck up a good relationship with this fellow, and intends to maintain it.
“He’s a nice type of horse who has lots of scope, and will go through the divisions,” was his summation.
Juvenile Driving Miss Daisy marked herself down as one to follow with a strong late burst to win Race 3, a Maiden Juvenile Plate for fillies over 1250m.
She was a decent fifth to special-looking Cousin Liz on debut, and from a wide draw came from well off the pace to mow them down in the last strides.
“They went slow, so I thought we were in trouble. But she kicked well and is a nice filly,” said Eric Sands.
Racing Express top bet Destin did the business without any real fuss in Race 4, and Richard Fourie was surprisingly bullish about a horse who has taken eight starts to crack his maiden.
“This horse will win a lot of races,” he said.
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