Timeform South Africa SmartPlays: Thursday, March 8

Timeform pick out three bets from South Africa on Thursday
Timeform pick out three bets from South Africa on Thursday

Timeform pick out three bets from Vaal on Thursday.

"...she will be nice and fresh this afternoon, and a rating of 76 on handicap debut seems fair enough..."

Ancient Spirit - 11:40 Vaal

Ancient Spirit stands out in this field on both form and official ratings and with Gavin Lerena renewing the association most boxes have been ticked. Three starts so far have seen the Fastnet Rock filly hit a top four finish every time, with a less than five length second to Ouro here over course and distance in November her latest effort. The winner may be well above average and won a handicap next time out to frank the form, and even a repeat of that run may yet prove good enough for Ancient Spirit to come home in front for trainer Johan Janse van Vuuren.

Roquebrune - 12:50 Vaal

Roquebrune is a very decent sort when in the mood and has wins at six and seven furlongs in the last twelve months with three victories from his last four starts. The son of top sire and South African hero Var scored by seven lengths at Flamingo Park on the sand last time out, yet he runs off of four pounds lower here, and if he can transfer that form to the turf then Roquebrune will take some stopping assuming he can break smartly dropped to this trip.

Schippers - 13:30 Vaal

Schippers represents the top combination of trainer Geoff Woodruff and jockey Gavin Lerena and after winning her maiden at the fourth attempt at Turffontein last time out the penny may have finally dropped. Rested since late December she will be nice and fresh this afternoon, and a rating of 76 on handicap debut seems fair enough assuming she can improve at all with further experience.

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