Guest Column: Close But No Cigar

Guest Column: Close But No Cigar

21 February, 2013
– Lisa Barrett

Await The Dawn. Image: Google Images

It was a night of mixed fortunes at Meydan for South Africa’s champion trainer Mike de Kock. Await The Dawn got the stable off to winning ways when he galloped away to an impressive win in the night’s opening race, a 2000m turf race. Labelled a “project horse by the De Kock team, Await The Dawn has had mixed fortunes since he was acquired from Coolmore, and last night’s win is the cherry on top of what has been a long road for the talented but mercurial son of Giant’s Causeway. As to which race he will be aimed at now, Mike wouldn’t be drawn into speculation, but conceded he had a lot of thinking to do now in this regard.

One of the other highlights of the evening was Mushreq’s win in the Al Fahidi Fort (Gr.2)over 1600m, beating a talented field including his two stablemates Master Of Hounds and Musir (2nd & 4th who both produced good comeback runs) and giving Mike his fifth win in the race since the legendary Ipi Tombe first won it back in 2003. De Kock was full of praise for Mushreq’s impressive win, and is hoping to keep him “on ice” and aim him at the Duty Free on World Cup night. That though will depend on whether Sheikh Hamdan and Angus Gold agree with Mike’s decision, or would like him to run again before deciding on his future racing plans.

For many though, the highlight of the night was Igugu, who was returning to action to run in the Balanchine Stakes, a race Mike has won several times in the past with the likes of Mahbooba and the great mare Irridescence. The champion mare was undertaking her first outing in over a year, but wasn’t able to keep up the relentless pace, tiring in the straight, and finishing third to the brilliant Godolphin filly Sajjhaaa. De Kock was satisfied with her performance, as he had cautioned earlier that she was short of her peak after such a lengthy lay off. As to her future racing plans, Mike has said she is likely to be aimed at the Jebel Hatta (1800m) on Super Saturday.

Hopefully this run will get her into her legendary fighting fit status and she will live up to her name of “jewel” and sparkle once again.

Lisa Barrett
– Guest Writer

“Lisa Barrett”, her psuedonym, currently works at a stud farm in the KZN Midlands. She is absolutely and totally crazy about horses and every aspect of them. She is fascinated by every aspect of the racehorse business, especially pedigrees and would like to one day write a book on her favourite sire!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *