FORRIES Waltz, a son of SA-based stallion Grey’s Inn, won a keenly contested $US110,000 Handicap over a mile at Meydan in Dubai on Thursday night, just a few days after Mike de Kock had paid a compliment to his sire.
“Grey’s Inn is one of the best value stallions in the land, if not the best,” Mike said earlier this week after another of the Karoo-based stallion’s top-class sons, Legal Eagle, had won last Saturday’s Gr1 Queen’s Plate for Sean Tarry’s yard.
Grey’s Inn, a son of the great Zabeel, won the 2004 Gr1 Vodacom Durban July in South Africa and became one of Mike’s early international travellers. He later won the Gr2 Dubai Gold Cup and was Gr1 placed in Dubai, Australia and Hong Kong.
Forries Waltz, driven to the line for a gutsy win. (Andrew Watkins).
Forries Waltz is still a colt and Mike and owning partners Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum and Chris Gerber will be hoping he can follow in his dad’s footsteps considering that he is also closely related to recent Gr1 classic winner Noah From Goa. Forries Waltz is miles away from that still, but his Meydan win was eye-catching and courageous – his fourth win from only five career starts. There will be more than a glimmer of hope that he can build on this and make more progress during the 2016 Carnival and beyond.
Christophe Soumillon, who partnered Forries Waltz to victory, was impressed with the fact that his mount was able to knuckle down hard to win despite sustained pressure coming from challengers on both flanks. “This was his first start in a year and to do what he did was great. He was going easy and I was worried when I hit the front, I went a bit early, but he was genuine to the end,” Soumillon said.
Mike commented: “Thanks to Christophe for a good ride and well done to him for lifting his eighth National Jockeys title in France, a true champion’s performance indeed. We are very pleased with Forries Waltz winning this race, good luck to his breeder Rennie Price of Wicklow Stud. Forries Waltz had a few good sorts behind him tonight. There are bigger races for him this Carnival, but we’d like to see more improvement.”
Alareef and Mujaarib (third in respective earlier events) were other earners for the stable on this, the second night of the 2016 Carnival. “Al Mashooqa just didn’t enjoy the dirt track at all, she turned it up early,” Mike said about his unplaced UAE 1000 Guineas runner.”
Headline photo: In the winner’s enclosure, Forries Waltz with Mike, Christophe and groom Elliot.