JOCKEY Raymond Danielson rode a driving finish on Empenoso Henn (4-1, yellow silks) to win a MR94 Handicap over 1600m on the sand track at the Vaal on Thursday.
This was Empenoso Henn’s first win on the surface after three previous attempts, the best of which was a second to sand specialist Mr Tobin in a 1800m contest in September 2011.
He’s won five from 13, just hanging on from hard-challenging rivals every time, and assistant trainer Mathew de Kock said: “Empenoso Henn is a game horse, he likes to win and if he gets his head in front he is hard to peg back.
“He was problematic as a younger horse, but his recent rest did him the world of good. He is much sounder now, a much happier horse. He’s versatile, as we’ve seen, on sand and grass, but he’s probably not an Emerald Cup prospect for next year. The 1400m of that race is too short, he likes a mile or 1800m.”
Empenoso Henn provided Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum with another winner. He is by Hennesy from a mare by Fitzcaraldo.