All going well Borrowdale Park will be racing on Friday – with the first race mid-morning I understand. There are seven races on the card featuring the 1600m Independence Trophy.

With racing in South Africa on hold for the time being Borrowdale Park should be centre stage – a distinction we don’t get very often – so here’s hoping.

At the final acceptance stage, the Independence field dropped to four – very disappointing under the circumstances – and only Fareeq, Three To Tango, What A Dandy and Pampas have picked up the gauntlet.

Last year the Independence Trophy was won by Amsterdam, followed across the line by Knuckleball, Roman Discent and Fareeq, Friday’s runner Pampas ran down the field then but is set to try and do better now.

The 2018 Independence trophy was won by Ashton Park and as a matter of interest Friday’s runner, What A Dandy, won the following race, a 1260m MR 55 Handicap. However, in his last outing on March 27 What A Dandy triumphed in a 1800m MR 75 Handicap, and he won over 1600m in September, beating Bugatti Blue. So, do not assume this successful sprinter cannot also stay.

Fareeq is another with winning form from 1260m to 1800m. His most recent victory was in a 1260m MR 88 Handicap on February 2, where he finished in front of stable companion Silver Coin. In October 2019 he beat Yarraman over 1800m by five lengths, but finished way back in the 1600m Ipi Tombe Stakes (L), won by Yarraman, on February 19. One should draw a line through that I would expect.

Three To Tango won the 2019 Zimbabwe Derby (2400m) thereby denying Sygone a Triple Crown, but earlier won the 1600m Tote Free Handicap. Although he may prefer further, Three To Tango is no slouch over a mile and In the 2020 Ipi Tombe he was 1.50 lengths off Yarraman at level weights. That day Fareeq, also carrying 60 kgs, ran 9 lengths behind Three To Tango.

Pampas returned to racing in March after almost a year’s layoff – and certainly didn’t distinguish himself on that occasion when finishing a distance behind Christofle over 1260m. However, he has previously won from 1600m to 2000m. He is trained by Bridget Stidolph and will be ridden by Morgen Nyamagwete – weighted to receive 3 kgs from the rest of the field.

Although training at Borrowdale Park has continued much the same as usual there has been no racing since March 27 so we must assume the horses will be fresh and ready to run. For old times’ sake, I fancy Three to Tango and What A Dandy, but Fareeq is sure to have plenty of support.

And…Apprentice Rodgers Satombo, who won on his mount, What A Dandy, last time out, can claim 4 kgs.


1 (2) FAREEQ (AUS) 57.0 (MR91) A B McNaughton – Gokhan Terzi
Nadeem (AUS) – Azwa (AUS) by Haafhd (IRE)

2 (1) THREE TO TANGO 57.0 (MR85) A N Takawira – Kirk Swanson
Greys Inn (USA) – Danseuse by Joshua Dancer (USA)

3 (3) WHAT A DANDY 57.0 (MR83) S *R Satombo (4.0) – Kirk Swanson
Just As Well (USA) – Leba (IRE) by King’s Best (USA)

4 (4) PAMPAS 54.0 (MR77) A M Nyamagwete – Bridget Stidolph
Silvano (GER) – Peru (SNL) by Candy Stripes (USA)

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