KILRAIN will start as favourite to win this year’s Castle Tankard Race set for Borrowdale Racecourse on May 5, ahead of defending champion Comanche Brave.
BY HENRY MHARA
The final field for the country’s highest-rated race was unveiled yesterday, with 10 horses on the race card.
It is Kilrain, the seven-year-old bay gelding and trained by Mike de Kock, who has been rated the favourite with a 2/1 odds, with many predicting him to walk away with the $30 000 winning purse on his debut at the 2 000m race.
Last year’s winner, Comanche Brave is rated slightly behind the Western Cape-based horse, with a 4/1 odds, similar to Ashton Park.
Mathematician, who have come second in the two previous editions, could make amends although horse pundits still don’t give him a chance.
He together with Comanche Brave and Ashton Park are the only three horses that have been retained from last year’s line-up.
Highly-rated trainer Bridget Stidolph has the highest number of horses, with five set to compete, including Comanche Brave, previously trained by Army Bronkhorst.
Other horses under Stidolph are Mathematician, Leven Point, Roman Discent and Simona, the only filly on the race card.
Stidolph is tipping Comanche Brave to make it a double this year. She reckons he is in good condition, and in best form.
The Castle Tankard, which is in its 56th year, is the oldest sponsored horse race in Africa and the biggest and only Grade One race in Zimbabwe.
The race is sponsored by Delta Beverages to the tune of $50 000 with the winning horse taking home $30 000 for his combinations to share.
There is also $10 000 for the second placed horse and a $6 000 for the horse that comes third. The sponsors have been generous extending $3 000 for the horse that finishes fourth.