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Entries in Mike de Kock (514)


Variety Club... Decisions To Be Made

Anton Marcus celebrates aboard Variety Club in the Champions MileAnton Marcus celebrates aboard Variety Club in the Champions Mile (G1) / HKJC (p)

“Champions Mile winner Variety Club is unlikely to race again this year”

Hong Kong - Champions Mile winner Variety Club is unlikely to race again this year, with trainer Mike De Kock declaring the horse “very doubtful” for December’s Hong Kong Mile.

Variety Club won the Group 2 Godolphin Mile on Dubai World Cup night in March and went on to claim his first international Grade 1 scalp in the Champions Mile at Sha Tin in May.

Plans to run in the Prix de la Foret at Longchamp on 5 October and the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Santa Anita on 1 November have also been shelved. But the top South African horseman still has hopes for HKIR success with Vercingetorix, who finished second in the Grade 1 Dubai Duty Free before finishing third in the Grade 1 QEII Cup at Sha Tin.

De Kock spoke to the press at Sha Tin yesterday:

“It hasn’t been straightforward in training with Variety Club. He travelled very badly back to England (after the Champions Mile), got very aggressive on the flight and had to be sedated a number of times. He lost a lot of weight. So we had to stop training him and build him up from scratch again, really. It’s obviously very disappointing but we need to put the welfare of the horse first.”

“Because of his behaviour it’s decision time for his owner Markus Jooste. Does he retire and go to stud, or should we give him a proper rest and have another go at next year’s season? This is not a decision he wants to make in a hurry.”

De Kock believes he has a chance at International Group 1 glory with Vercingetorix, though.

De Kock continued: “Vercingetorix also didn’t travel back well but he’s done very well in England. He’s looking fantastic and I would certainly like to bring him across (for the Longines Hong Kong International Raceday on 14 December), providing training goes well.

“If we do, we’d probably have to give him a trial in Hong Kong (on the trial day, 23 November). That’s something I’d have to discuss with Sheikh Mohammed (bin Khalifa Al Maktoum) but I’m very keen to bring Vercingetorix. He ran a good third (in the QEII Cup in April) and was not quite at his best after a hard season in Dubai.”

Extract from Tab News



soft falling rainSoft Falling Rain / Dubai Racing Club/Andrew Watkins (p)

National Assembly (CAN) - Gardener’s Delight (USA)

South African-bred international Group winner Soft Falling Rain has been secured for stud by Mary Slack’s Wilgerbosdrift Farm. The lightly-raced five-year-old will be returning to South Africa shortly to take up stallion duties.

Mike de Kock said on Thursday that Soft Falling Rain will be syndicated and that his original owner, Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum of Dubai, will be retaining a share following a deal brokered by Jehan Malherbe of Form Bloodstock.

Mike commented: “This is a coup for the South African breeding industry. Soft Falling Rain was a world class sprinter-miler and will bring a valuable pedigree, remarkable versatility and true international quality to our community of breeders. Soft Falling Rain has been doing plenty of travelling which is not ideal for a horse of this calibre competing at the highest level. It takes its toll. This is the right time to have retired him. That Sheikh Hamdan has kept a share is most encouraging. He will support Soft Falling Rain with some of his top broodmares. Wilgerbosdrift, too, has a terrific broodmare band.”

Soft Falling Rain was bred at Highlands Farm. He is by National Assembly from Gardener’s Delight (Giant’s Causeway) and was a R350,000 yearling at the inaugural Cape Yearling Sale in 2011, purchased for Sheikh Hamdan by Angus Gold and Form Bloodstock.

Soft Falling Rain was successful on three continents. He won seven of 13 starts - on turf and all-weather tracks - and was placed twice for career earnings of approximately ZAR13-million. As a two-year-old, he won the 2012 Grade 1 SA Nursery over 1200m at Turffontein by four lengths. Exported to Dubai, his three-year-old career produced wins in the 2013 Grade 3 UAE 2000 Guineas and the Grade 2 Godolphin Mile, both over 1600m.

As an early four-year-old, Soft Falling Rain proved a class above his opposition in the Grade 2 Nayef Joel Stakes, beating Montridge by 3.75-lengths over the Newmarket Mile. He returned to Dubai to defend the Godolphin Mile on Dubai World Cup Day in March 2014 and finished a gallant second to his supremely accomplished stablemate Variety Club.

Soft Falling Rain was shipped back to the UK to contest what would be his final race, the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes over 1600m at Royal Ascot last June. Despite an interrupted preparation, he gave a good account of himself finishing only 4 lengths off Toronado, just running out of steam late in the race.

Soft Falling Rain had a highest career rating of 122 following his Group 2 win in the UK. He goes to stud with a final rating of 120.

Extract from Mike de Kock Racing



kosava and warren kennedyKosava - 2013 Summerhill Ready To Run Graduate / Gold Circle (p)


Kahal (GB) - Nordic Air by Northern Guest (USA)
3 Year-Old Bay Filly

Owners : Summerhill Stud Syndicate (Nom: Mr M J B Goss)
Trainer : Mike de Kock
Jockey : Warren Kennedy
Breeder : Summerhill Stud

KOSAVA is a graduate from the Summerhill draft of the 2013 Emperors Palace Ready To Run Sale.

For Maiden Fillies and Mares
Scottsville, Turf, 1200m
13 August 2014

# Horse Jockey Trainer Kg Draw Lengths
1 KOSAVA W Kennedy Mike de Kock 58.0 4 0.0
2 PEARL EMBLEM S Cormack Paul Lafferty 58.0 3 4.5
3 KADEZE B Lerena Tony Rivalland 58.0 8 5.5
4 STYLISH VISION * C Murray (4.0) Charles Laird 58.0 5 5.6
5 NICE LIKE THAT S Randolph Kumaran Naidoo 60.0 7 5.7
6 SURFING BELLE A Marcus Dennis Bosch 58.0 13 10.9
7 LEOPARD LILY K Shea Duncan Howells 58.0 2 11.4
8 GRACIOUS GRACE A Forbes Chris Erasmus 60.0 11 12.9
9 BEE BEE BONNET S Veale Des Egdes 58.0 1 14.2
10 HALLOWEEN NIGHT W Marwing Robbie Hill 58.0 10 15.7
11 RAAT KI RANI * T Godden (4.0) Kumaran Naidoo 60.0 6 16.5
12 FIELD CAT K de Melo Mike Pappas 60.0 12 16.5
13 MISS JUYA I Sturgeon Des Egdes 58.0 9 18.0

summerhill stud

Enquiries :
Tarryn Liebenberg +27 (0) 83 787 1982
or email



golden swordGolden Sword / Andrew Watkins (p)


We didn’t say that, a legend did. But it’s a fact that the horse that beat Golden Sword in the Derby, was the sire of the winner of England’s greatest weight-for-age race on Saturday. It’s also a fact that Golden Sword covered a royal book of mares, from the “Royalty” of breeding, in his first two seasons, and his first foals are the talk of better judges than ourselves.

summerhill stud, south africa

Enquiries :
Linda Norval 27 (0) 33 263 1081
or email



elan property group gold cup

Greyville, Turf, 3200m
26 July 2014

David ThiseltonDavid Thiselton
Gold Circle
The Dean Kannemeyer-trained Hot Ticket is favoured to win his first Group 1 race in Saturday’s eLan Property Group Gold Cup at Greyville.

Hot Ticket is the only one of Kannemeyer’s team of three horses entered for the Champions meeting that is not a Grade 1 winner but the trainer expects that to change in Saturday’s 3200m feature.

“He came through his win in the Gold Vase very well. He has been moving very well, very freely, and has thrived in Durban,” Kannemeyer said. “He has been giving Karl Neisius a good feel and is in top shape. He has earned his stripes by winning some of the biggest staying races in the country. It is tough to carry 60kg over 3200m, but he is only maturing now and has ended up being one of the biggest horses in the yard.”

Hot Ticket won the Grade 2 Gold Vase under the topweight over 3000m on Vodacom Durban July day.

Kannemeyer’s unbeaten colt Afrikaburn impressed with his win on July day in the Grade 1 Durban Golden Horseshoe over 1400m and is drawn in pole position in the Grade 1 Premier’s Champion Stakes over 1600m on Saturday.

The yard’s stalwart three-time Grade 1 winner Capetown Noir runs in the Grade 1 Beach Beauty Champions Cup with the blinkers removed as he over raced in the Durban July.

“He is a brilliant miler and is in great shape, so if he puts his best foot forward is a lively runner although he has a tricky draw,” Kannemeyer said.

Mike de Kock has two runners in the Gold Cup and can’t separate Wild One and Canterbury Tale despite stable jockey Anthony Delpech electing to ride Wild One.

“They are a similar type of horse and will both relish the trip, so I don’t have a preference. They are both very well,” De Kock said.

Canterbury Tale showed that he as an out and out stayer in last year’s Gold Cup, when staying on strongly for third. He is only two points higher in the merit ratings this year but carries the same weight of 54kg. Earlier last season he won the Grade 2 Gold Bowl over 3200m at Turffontein and looks to have had a perfect preparation this year as this will be his third run after a seven month layoff. However he is drawn 15 of the 16 runners but does have a top class jockey Weichong Marwing aboard.

Wild One looks potentially well handicapped with 53,5kg. He gave his passionate owner Sean Phillips his first Graded race success when winning the Grade 3 Lonsdale Stirrup Cup over 2400m at Greyville in May and followed that run with a third to Hot Ticket in the Grade 2 Gold Bowl over 3000m on Durban July day. He is 0,5kg better off with Hot Ticket but has to jump from the widest draw of all.

De Kock has a strong hand in the two Grade 1 two-year-old races with five runners in total. He runs the Grade 1 Allan Robertson winner Alboran Sea as well as Pine Princess in the Grade 1 Thekwini Stakes over 1600m for two-year-old fillies.

Alboran Sea jumped tardily last time out in the Grade 1 Zulu Kingdom Golden Slipper over 1400m but looked the winner when bursting into the lead late, only to be caught near the line by the outsider Bilateral. Pine Princess was drawn wide in the Golden Slipper, but stayed on well from a handy position for a 0,75 length third.

“Pine Princess will relish the step up in trip. It might be the top end of Alboran Sea’s range because she has tremendous speed, but that might be an asset because on pedigree she will get the trip on her head,” De Kock said.

Delpech replaces Muzi Yeni on Alboran Sea and Bernard Fayd’Herbe goes on to Pine Princess.

De Kock’s pair Anjaal and Jayyed had jarred up from their July day runs where they finished within a short-head of each other in fourth and fifth in the Grade 1 Golden Horseshoe over 1400m. Mootahadee is his third runner and shouldn’t be underestimated as he finished close up to older horses over 1400m on the Greyville polytrack last time when running off an official merit rating of 84.

“All three will be decent horses in time to come and all are doing well. In the long term the maiden Jayyed might be the best of them,” De Kock said.

Final Field

# Horse Kg MR Dr Jockey Trainer
1 HOT TICKET 60.0 112 6 K Neisius Dean Kannemeyer
2 RUN FOR IT 57.5 106 5 S Cormack Justin Snaith
3 PADDY O’REILLY 57.5 105 2 B Fayd’Herbe Mike Stewart
4 SHOGUNNAR 57.5 105 3 K de Melo Gavin van Zyl
5 GOLD ONYX 57.0 104 16 P Strydom Sean Tarry
6 MASTER SABINA 56.5 104 4 A Marcus Geoff Woodruff
7 JEPPE’S REEF 55.0 98 13 G van Niekerk Mike Bass
8 CROWN OF GOLD 54.5 97 14 K Shea Tara Laing
9 CANTERBURY TALE 54.0 95 18 W Marwing Mike de Kock
10 SERISSA 53.5 95 10 S Khumalo Sean Tarry
11 GOTHIC 53.5 94 1 M Byleveld Vaughan Marshall
12 WILD ONE 53.5 94 19 A Delpech Mike de Kock
13 WAVIN’ FLAG 53.0 93 8 G Hatt Brett Crawford
14 ASH CLOUD 52.5 97 15 S Veale Weiho Marwing
15 ALEXANDER 52.5 92 9 M Yeni Glen Kotzen
16 MAGIC SMOKE 52.0 89 17 R Danielson Mike Azzie
  Reserve Runners          
17 SAVAGE WIND 52.0 82 7 Reserve 1 Joe Soma
18 SKY RISE 52.0 82 11 Reserve 2 Weiho Marwing
19 DANCING CLUB 52.0 68 12 Reserve 3 Terry Lowe

Extract from Racing & Sports

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