Grant van Niekerk has been appointed first jockey to the powerful Plattner Racing team handled by Andre Nel, writes Michael Clower.
Nel said on Tuesday: “Grant is a natural choice. He is very talented, he can ride all the weights and he has already done well for us. We will have first claim on him.”
Nel has 30 horses to race in Cape Town during the coming winter season and, in addition, he is sending ten of his best ones to join his Durban string. Van Niekerk will fly up to partner those that run in Group races. The stable also has 26 two-year-olds.
Van Niekerk said: “I am very happy to get the job. Andre is a gentleman to ride for and he has some good horses. I went up there to work this morning and I rode a couple of nice ones. I think we will do well together.”
Van Niekerk, 25, replaces his great friend Aldo Domeyer who took over his job as first jockey to Candice Bass-Robinson. He has been sidelined since Met day by accumulated suspensions but says he will be back in action on March 11.