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De Kock Lauds Gold Circle – Hollywood Move

Watch all of the July gallops

A groundbreaking racecourse naming partnership and the combination of the alluring aroma of hot coffee and the pulsating beat of golden hooves thundering down the straight set the scene for a refreshingly feelgood morning at a buzzing Hollywoodbets Greyville city track on Thursday morning.

Neil Butcher, Devin Heffer, Babu Nunan and Paul Lafferty at the official presentation of the branding agreement (Pic – Candiese Marnewic)

Multiple champion trainer Mike de Kock, who bids for a fifth Vodacom Durban July winner next Saturday, hailed the Gold Circle – Hollywoodbets racecourse branding initiative as a ‘one of the best things to happen to racing for decades’.

“Thank goodness that we have somebody thinking out the box at last. The manner in which Owen Heffer and his company were treated in the past – the banning of publications and the like – was plain and downright embarrassing and shameful. It’s a true mark of the man that Owen has let bygones be bygones and stepped forward to get involved in the interests of this great game. I hope that this alliance will be an example to the entire industry. I wish Hollywood and Gold Circle every success – and all stakeholders should be sitting up and thinking. Pooling skills and resources is long overdue and may KZN racing prosper,”the champion trainer told the Sporting Post.

The move by Gold Circle to bring a high-powered partner, who have a proven track record and have demonstrated their energy and enthusiasm to promote the sport and their brand with vigour, on board should be welcomed.

Divisions and fractured relationships have for too long characterised racing in this country, with vested interests and ego’s often overriding good old-fashioned business sense.

Soqrat (Craig Zackey) and Hawwaam (Anton Marcus) stretch after a good gallop (Pic – Candiese Marnewick)

Mike De Kock added that he was pleased that his July favourite Hawwaam had been given a good blow-out and worked with his top miler stablemate Soqrat. Interesingly, the favourite’s work was amongst the most committed of the morning.

“I always give them a decent gallop at this stage. I don’t believe in bringing MR 80 rated companions along for a canter. He is not easy in the mouth, but Hawwaam’s in a good space,” he said.

Watch the Vodacom Durban July gallops here:

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7 comments on “De Kock Lauds Gold Circle – Hollywood Move

  1. beatle says:

    Great news – my personal opinion the great divide in racing was caused by the so called forgotten robin hood – Mr Jooste – it will take time but now that he is not involved better for the game

  2. Anthony says:

    he was never a robin hood – what he took he kept for himself – and he wanted the entire cake, lock, stock and barrel

  3. Cecil Pienaar says:

    Hi Mr Ed and SP team. Nice articles on the Upcoming July.

    Also nice to Paul Laff back in action

  4. donald says:

    …………………….. and he is still walking around as if nothing happened ?

    1. karel says:

      … can you be a bit more specific? You’re talking in riddles. Who is it – De Kock, Lafferty, or…?

  5. Sanjay Kandhai says:

    Not involved in horse racing, but would
    like to back a horse in the July. Any fancies?

  6. Frankie says:

    Frankie Zackey…well done MDK for having the guts to speak out about the destructive controlling force within racing while many others are silent while racing is abused…when he uses the words “plain and downright embarrassing and shameful”it also brings to mind what they done to formgrids…I hope other influential racing people follow MDK lead and have the Balls to face the truth no matter how ugly or who is involved in the bad decisions that go against the good of the game…Racing must rid itself of self serving people and replace them with people who put racing and not themselves or their agendas first

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