IF racing was a beauty contest, three-year-old Janoobi would have been in the hunt for first prize along with a few stunners among the celebrities on Charity Mile Day at Turffontein, Saturday.
Janoobi (6-1), was a picture of health and fitness when he cantered down to the start of Race 10 over 1600m, and he came back like a bullet under a vintage front-running ride from master jockey Piere Strydom.
Janoobi, fast on the upgrade. (JC Photos)
Strydom, who over the years has secured more golf games with Mike de Kock than rides for the stable, took advantage of this chance – without being tied down to instructions, traditionally a sensitive point between him and Mike.
Janoobi was drawn 12-12 in a competitive handicap and Strydom, who looked almost out of place in Sheikh Hamdan’s silks, said: “When I feel a horse going to the start I know what to do, how to ride it. Janoobi jumped very well and we were able to get across quickly to make the pace, and then he kicked on too and won a good race.”
Mike and ‘Striker’ were joking with each other in the winner’s enclosure and Mike, gesturing with his hand, said: “I doff my cape to Piere Strydom. I left it to him and he rode a good race!”
Janoobi, who races for Sheikh Hamdan, enjoyed the mile, stepping up from 1400m, and was impressive in turning the tables to the tune of five lengths on second-placed Front Rank on their last meeting. At level weights, that means that Janoobi had improved by at least that margin in the last two weeks and Mike said: “We’ve never made his ability a secret, he is Group material.”
A son of Silvano and Shasta Daisy (by Rakeen), Janoobi’s next few runs will be mapped out by the stable, with several classic options open.
Earlier this week, at Greyville on Tuesday, Anton Marcus sported the Hamdan silks on Malhama (AUS), who won her 1400m Maiden by 1.75-lengths. She is a three-year-old filly by Commands (AUS).
The confident Muzi Yeni rode versatile three-year-old Bold Rex to his fourth win this year at the Vaal on Thursday, a good feat for the progressive son of Bold Silvano, who races for the De Kock. Grant/Haynes, Van der Linden and Malherbe partnership. Part-owner JJ van der Linden celebrated his birthday too, a nice present for him on the day.
Malhama, Maiden behind her.
Bold Rex, four wins this year.