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Posted 2021-07-12 10:23:40  
Captain Arrives After Long Overseas Sojourn

Pundits were left pondering on what might have been if Captain Fontane had been able to race his entire three-year-old career after he scored a bloodless victory at an almost deserted Hollywoodbets Scottsville yesterday. Racing under level 4 lockdown regulations, only essential staff were permitted on course.

Off the track for 11 months that included time in quarantine, Garth Puller’s charge impressed all who saw him put his opposition to bed with the minimum of fuss as Captain Fontane responded to a few half-hearted backhanders from rider Ashton Arries.
“He was a terror when he came into the yard,” said Puller, “trying to kill everybody, and we gelded him straight away.

“He’s a horse with lots of character. We put an infrared lamp in his stable and he pulled it off the roof getting the wires all tangled around his neck. We thought he would electrocute somebody.
“But when he’s in the stable he will come to the door and stick his tongue out while you pet him.
“He’s a character and that’s probably some of the reason why he’s so good.”
Asked whether he would stay any further, Puller didn’t hesitate. “He’ll see out a mile on his coconut.

“This is a good horse. He was only half fit,” Puller said, pointing to his stomach indicating that the gelding was still carrying plenty of condition.

Captain Fontane is owned by David Ferraris and his Hong Kong owner David Hui and was destine for export to Hong Kong before an outbreak of African Horse Sickness saw all exports stopped.

Apprentice Rachel Venniker, the only female rider in the country and recently granted her professional licence, scored her first win, getting home in the last aboard the Michael Roberts-trained Calulo. Venniker was an accomplished work rider before entering the South African Jockey Academy and has been mentored by Roberts.

It was an afternoon of doubles with Duncan Howells, Garth van Zyl and Dean Kannemeyer all paying two visits to the winner’s circle. Howells kicked off the meeting with outsider Maquette and then leading in Aquae Sulis in the seventh, scoring back-to-back victories for the stable.

Van Zyl saddled the almost white After The Rain in the opening leg of the Pick 6 and he and Warren Kennedy followed up quickly as the well-supported Rodriguez landed the odds in the next.

Short-price favourite Greengrowthelilacs gave Kannemeyer a few anxious moments as she only got going late to win the second and he followed up with Meet At The George in the eighth.

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