The final field for the upcoming Durban July has finally been announced, and the race has an open field, with a few notable stand out inclusions.

The race is the big one that all South African trainers aim to win at the beginning of the season. Greyville will play host to the most famous race on the continent, on a day when millions is expected to be gambled.

There were no real big surprises when the final 18 horses to run in the race was announced. The inclusion of Frank Robinson’s Roy Had Enough following his Grade 3 victory at Scottsville was the only debatable issue before the announcement. However, who should punters be putting their money on with BetXChange for the big race?

Do It Again

Many hearts in the country will be hoping for another win for the S J Snaith trained horse. Throughout the history of the race, only four runners have ever returned to win the showpiece handicap in consecutive years. The last horse to claim that honour was El Picha in 2000, but Do It Again has showcased all the hallmarks of a horse that I capable of doing that. The four-year-old romped home in the 2018 event and their form this year has been consistent.

He returned to the track after a 182-day break in January to beat Soqrat at Kenilworth, before suffering a setback 20 days later. However, he returned to form winning by half-a-length from Cirillo at Greyville in early June. Do It Again will take some beating, and is the current 4.00 second-favourite with BetXChange.


The leading challenger for last year’s champion will likely be in the form of M F De Kock’s trained Hawwaam. The Durban handicap has long been a happy hunting ground for three-year-olds, and that was evident last year. Hawwaam could continue that long run of success for the age group and has been in irrepressible form.

He has only ever lost once; with that defeat coming in February as it was well beaten by National Park. However, since then Hawwaam has been dominant and will rightly start the race as the heavy 1.80 favourite with BetXChange. He bounced back from defeat with a four-length victory over Cascapedia, before winning a length-and-a-half over Twist of Fate at the beginning of June. The potential head-to-head between Hawwaam and Do It Again will make this event unmissable.

Twist Of Fate

Another three-year-old that has a reasonable chance in the race will be Twist Of Fate. Currently priced at 16.00 with BetXChange, he will create a potential each way pick for punters. While he has only been victorious on one occasion; it is worth noting that he was led home on that occasion by Anton Marcus. No jockey has ever won more Durban handicaps than him and should he opt to ride Twist Of Fate; he will become a serious contender.

Last time out he was beaten by Haawaam, but he did hold his own in the majority of the race before tiring in the final third. The credentials are there for Twist Of Fate, but at the moment he remains an each way chance and not a contender. However, should Marcus ride him; he becomes a serious contender to be a lucrative option for punters.

Tip: Do It Again to win the Durban Handicap at 4.00 with BetXChange.

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