“If the racing world doesn’t sit up and take notice of the value of South African bloodstock after this Dubai World Cup meeting, they never will!” said Mike de Kock after the stable had saddled two South African-bred winners on the night. Seven other De Kock-runners earned stake cheques at the globe’s richest race meeting.
Three-year-old Soft Falling Rain (by National Emblem), produced a scintillating run under Paul Hanagan to win the Gr2 Godolphin Mile ($US1 million) on the all-weather, remaining unbeaten after seven starts, and star sprinter Shea Shea (National Assembly, Christophe Soumillon) bettered his own course record when winning the $US1 million Al Quoz Sprint (Gr1).
Christophe Soummillon holds up the South African flag after his win on Shea Shea. (Andrew Watkins)
“This was a wonderful meeting for the yard and we were on the world stage at this huge occasion. We enjoyed incredible support from the South Africans who flew over with Phil Georgio, who arranges the annual supporters trip to Dubai. It was overwhelming and brought tears to our eyes.”
Mike noted that trainer Paul Lafferty was among the visiting South Africans and congratulated ‘Laff’ on his first Gr1 win, recorded in the SA Classic at Turffontein on Saturday.
Mike completed the 2012/13 Dubai season with 15 winners and 41 places from 89 starts and said: “I am very proud of what my team has achieved here this year, we’ve had big results. “
The stable has the firepower to compete in the UK and elsewhere over the next several months and Mike commented: “Soft Falling Rain and Shea Shea will be aimed at Royal Ascot and we have others like Igugu and The Apache who are good enough to race in England too.
“We may aim a horse like Await The Dawn at the Singapore Cup and The Apache could go for the QEII Cup in Hong Kong. We’ve also bought a number of two-year-olds for English season, so we’ll be manning our Newmarket base later this year.”
Headline photo: Shea Shea, the South African-bred, in the winner’s enclosure with his South African connections. (Andrew Watkins).
Congratulations to the Mike de Kock Dubai based team, on a remarkable training feat. The horses were primed to perfection for the big raceday. You can’t get much better than the results achieved, with only 13 runners. Well done to the best value for money racehorse trainer on the planet, you deserve the success you achieve.
Well done on a great campaign,,,,,, On Duty Free result,,,, do you think IPI TOMBE was more talented than IGUGU ???
Well Done Mike and the team in Dubai, the horses looked amazing and ran like champions. Now lets go to England and show them there, I hope your operation can take off like it has in Dubai because that will really show how good SA bloodstock are.
Go Mike Go.
I’ve personally always thought Ipi Tombe was more talented than Igugu. That said, I honestly believe we haven’t seen Igugu anywhere near her best in Dubai either – she’s much more talented than what she showed in the UAE. Here’s hoping Mike gets her right in the UK & that she has the chance to prove to the world what she’s really capable of.
Brilliant DWC night Mike & team!!!! Congrats to all involved!
While both wins on the night were a true pleasure to watch, I absolutely adored Soft Falling Rain’s determined run! I don’t think I’ve screamed myself so hoarse since Victory Moon’s & Ipi Tombe’s wins in our first ever WC back in 2003. Even sprained my calf from all the insane leaping & hollering – my whole family thought I’d truly gone bonkers, lol.