Sports · June 24, 2022

Great Durban July puzzle still there for resolution after official gallop

There has been little change in the betting market for next Saturday’s Durban July following the official gallop at Greyville Racecourse on Thursday. The larger crowd in recent years has turned up for the festive tune-up event, but the ongoing action hasn’t sparked a rush to bookmakers.

That’s not to say the action wasn’t engaging and impressive. In fact, nearly all of the horses working around the Greyville turf looked in great shape and raised expectations for a memorable day on July 2nd.

The consensus seemed to be that reigning Durban champion July Kommetdieding had the best gallop of the morning, for coach Michelle Rix and under the hands of the great runner Gavin Lerena.

Coach Mike de Kock’s entire quartet – Safe Passage, the only filly Sparkling Water, Al Muthana and Aragosta – were judged not far behind.

Two-time July winner Do It Again purred to the experts as well.

But bettors spent more time squeezing into coffee and morning sandwiches than clicking through their betting sites.

READ ALSO: Favorite draw well for the July of Durban

To be fair, the public gallop in July rarely provides great revelations. Horses are on a tightrope in terms of the timing of their preparation for South Africa’s biggest race and the trainers won’t allow any histrionics. Most observers can learn perhaps from below average effort here and there.

In this sense, the second favorite Linebacker did not have people stammering excitedly, while Hoedspruit and Pomp And Power had some frowns.

The aforementioned Lobster has been the horse on the move in recent weeks, shortening from 20-1 to 14-1. Others who drew support were last year’s runner-up Linebacker and longtime “talking horse” Hoedspruit.

Everything Safe Passage, Pomp And Power, Do It Again, and Kommetdieding all drifted slightly.


4-1 Safe passage

5-1 linebacker

6-1 sparkling water

7-1 pomp and power

13-1 Do it again, Hoedspruit, Kommetdieding

15-1 JetDark

16-1 Aragon

20-1 Zapatillas, Waterberry Lane, Al Muthana

33-1 Belgarion

55-1 Porto Manzano

66-1 Saxon Red, Astrix

75-1 Flying carpet

90-1 second bases