The Conglomerate, under a superb tactical ride from Piere Strydom, pulled off a memorable win in today’s Gr1 Vodacom Durban July.
Always handy Strydom moved his mount through smoothly under hands and heels to hit the front 200m out and had the race in the bag in a matter of strides. The diminutive Marinaresco came from the rear of the field to finish a neck second ahead of Mac De Lago, It’s My Turn and Saratoga Dancer in fifth. Favourite, the grey filly Bela-Bela, did just enough to save place punters in sixth.
It was a fourth win for Strydom in the country’s richest race but the first for trainer Joey Ramsden and owners Ingrid and Markus Jooste.
“It was an exceptional ride,” said Ramsden. “This is always a great day. I have been coming here for 18 years and it’s always great racing.”
Marinaresco must now rate as the best three-year-old in the country as he came from last at the top of the straight. He showed a tremendous turn of foot and ran past all but The Conglomerate with ease although Ramsden was never worried. “I think Piere knew he had it in the bag.”
Weiho Marwing gave Mac De Lago the thumbs up. “He ran a great race.” Brother Weichong said French Navy had every chance even though he missed the break but was not suited to the slow pace.
There were some hard luck stories. Solid Speed returned with a nosebleed while both Triple Crown hero Abashiri and St Tropez, stable companion to the winner, returned lame.
Picture: Nkosi Hlophe
2016 Vodacom Durban July result
July 2, Greyville Race 7
Win 14 = R 24.50
Place 14 = R 3.40
Place 13 = R 3.20
Place 2 = R 4.20
Place 9 = R 1.90
Place 17 = R 4.90
Place 18 = R 1.40
Swinger 13/14 = R 67.90
Swinger 2/14 = R 90.50
Swinger 2/13 = R 75.50
Exacta 14/13 = R 461.60
Trifecta 14/13/2 = R 12465.10
Quartet 14/13/2/9 = R 152149.10
Double 14/14 = R 258.40