Race-By-Race Tips: Turffontein, Thursday 18th March

There's a ten-race card for punters to get stuck into at Turffontein on Thursday.
There's a ten-race card for punters to get stuck into at Turffontein on Thursday.

Having picked out two winning pointers at Greyville on Wednesday, Nick Seddon heads back to South Africa to take a look at Thursday’s ten-race card at Turffontein…

It’s testing times at the moment - with no UK racing until at least the end of April as it stands - though we were handed a timely boost on Wednesday afternoon that racing will continue behind closed doors in Ireland, and there’s plenty of racing for us to get stuck into in South Africa on Thursday morning. 

Turffontein hosts a bumper ten-race card which gets underway at 10.25am, and all of the action will be live to watch on Sky Sports Racing. 

10:25am: Race 1 - Maiden Juvenile Plate (7 furlongs)

With very little meaningful form to go by, it looks worth siding with the once-raced Takagari, who posted a solid effort to finish fourth on debut over course and distance last month, and could well take this with that experience now under his belt. The Contractor has one extra start under his belt coming into this, and considering he was one place ahead of the selection that day, he can’t be discounted either. 

Selection: Takagari

11:00am: Race 2 - Fillies’ Maiden Juvenile Plate (7 furlongs)

Mynage produced a solid debut effort to finish second over course and distance at the end of last month, and this looks a good opportunity for her to get off the mark at the second time of asking. Swiss Bank was fourth in a similar event over six furlongs last time out, and is interesting now asked to tackle an extra furlong. 

Selection: Mynage

11:35am: Race 3 - Fillies’ and Mares’ Maiden (7 furlongs)

This race hardly sets the pulse racing, and won’t take an awful lot of winning. The vast majority of the runners are three-year-olds, and Stunning is likely to be a warm order for this after a fine effort to finish second over course and distance last month. She’s a consistent type, but looks vulnerable to a potential improver, namely Hot Gossip - another who arrives here on an upward curve and looks the way to go at the prices. 

Selection: Hot Gossip

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12:10pm: Race 4 - Maiden Plate (1 mile)

This is another race of low quality, and looks likely to boil down to a match between Psycho King and Crank It Up. A very narrow preference is for the latter, who posted a solid effort to finish third over course and distance three starts ago, and he can build on his recent consistency to pick up a deserved success from his market rival, who will be dangerous if benefiting from the drop back to a mile.

Selection: Crank It Up

12:45pm: Race 5 - Handicap (1 mile)

Dan The Lad is likely to be popular after striking over slightly shorter here last time, though he will find this tougher under a 5 lb penalty, and it could be worth taking a chance on Greek Fire. A regular here, he’s been holding his own in some fairly tough assignments of late, and arrives here on a solid-looking mark.

Selection: Greek Fire

13:20pm: Race 6 - Handicap (1 mile, 2 furlongs)

It’s difficult to look past Marshall Foch, who completed a double in fine style when a commanding winner over slightly shorter here last month, and he can shrug off a 7 lb rise in the weights by completing a hat-trick. 

Selection: Marshall Foch

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13:55pm: Race 7 - Handicap (1 mile, 2 furlongs)

This is a difficult puzzle to solve, with the vast majority of these looking as though they’re in the grip of the handicapper. A chance is taken on the consistent Major Return, who admittedly hasn’t gotten his head in front since last June, but is running well of late and would have a solid chance off this kind of mark if producing his best.

Selection: Major Return

14:35: Race 8 - Handicap (5 furlongs)

The three-year-old Undisclosed brings winning form to the table having struck at the Vaal last time out, but his revised mark looks steep enough, and instead it could be worth siding with the filly Hear The Trumpet. She failed in her bid for a hat-trick at the Vaal last time out, though she didn’t run badly there, and this speedster deserves another chance to prove she’s still a betting proposition off her current mark. 

Selection: Hear The Trumpet

15:10: Race 9 - Fillies’ and Mares’ Graduation Plate (7 furlongs)

Rio’s Winter will likely be a short price following two excellent efforts to hit the frame in graded company, though she makes no appeal at the prices, and instead the improving  Stellar Motion is a sporting each-way alternative. She took the step into handicap company in her stride when competing a double over a furlong shorter here in January, and although this will ask more from here, she arrives on an upward curve and ought to go well. 

Selection: Stellar Motion each-way

15:40: Race 10 - Handicap (7 furlongs)

We close a never-ending card with a wide-open looking handicap, which can go the way of Western Oasis. He’s produced two solid efforts to hit the frame the last twice, and looks one to be interesting in off this kind of mark. Seven Patriots and Lazarus Tree head the dangers.

Selection: Western Oasis

You can bet on the racing at Turffontein with most big-name bookmakers, including Ladbrokes, bet365, William Hill and BetVictor - while all of the action will be live to watch on Sky Sports Racing.

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