Port Elizabeth’s champion three-year-old miler National Park and Cape Town’s Twist of Fate were undeniably the underdogs in Friday night’s Gr2 KRA Guineas at Greyville, facing three-time Gr1-winning star Soqrat for the first time at the Durban track.
However, the barrier draw had a big say in the result with 17-10 favourite Soqrat unable to overcome his No 13 gate as pole-positioned Twist Of Fate took the honours from National Park, drawn 2.
Twist Of Fate, trained by Joey Ramsden, has been a model of consistency throughout his three-year-old season, finishing in the close company of some very good horses – including Soqrat in the Cape Guineas. He was coming off a 97-day rest but still attracted plenty of betting support, starting at 5-2.
Jockey Anton Marcus settled the son of Master Of My Fate handily in fourth position before timing the finishing effort well – coming off the turn with a strong run and passing the free-running National Park in the final 100m.
“I actually didn’t want to be drawn at one, I wanted to be drawn five or six so I could ride a race on him. The pace was better than anticipated, which suited us,” said jockey Anton Marcus, who’d switched Twist Of Fate off the fence to the middle of the track for his finishing effort.
Soqrat found himself trailing the field, some 12 lengths off the pace, and punters knew their fate early. He was never going to win, but did make some good headway in the straight, finishing only 2.40 lengths off the winner in fourth.
Trainer Joey Ramsden commented: “Anton was at his brilliant best with a very willing and capable partner in Twist Of Fate. We knew he was well, all we hoped for was luck in running and we got that. I am very thankful to him for a top ride and to my assistant Ricardo Sabotker in Cape Town, who has put a lot of work into this horse. We tried some fresh strategies.”
Ramsden added: “Twist Of Fate has locked horns with the best, his form reflects the strongest in the country. He is owned by the River Palace Syndicate comprising of people from Mauritius, Canada and elsewhere, a great bunch of guys.”
Twist Of Fate was bred by Erenst Du Preez’s recently closed Favour Stud and fetched a mere R20,000 at the CTS March Sale of 2017. He’s 6 from 13 and shows over R2,2-million in career stake earnings.