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Grant van Niekerk Gets The Boot

Delicenced by HKJC

Popular South African jockey Grant van Niekerk has been sacked by the Hong Kong Jockey Club with immediate effect.

The South China Morning Post reports that Van Niekerk, who was fifth in the jockeys’ championship, was ‘delicensed’ by the HKJC licensing committee on Monday as a result of a ‘conduct-related matter which does not pertain to any race riding or integrity-related matter’.

Van Niekerk has picked up a few careless riding bans along the way and was in his second season in Hong Kong.

There was no indication as to whether an appeal facility is available.

Further details will be published once available.

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37 comments on “Grant van Niekerk Gets The Boot

  1. Michael Jacobs says:

    Probably Moreira and Zac Purton putting the boot in to get Grant out. Grant was starting to churn out the winners ( at good odds) and those guys started to feel the pressure. They get the best rides on all the good horses and the favourites, but Grant and Karis Teetan were starting to breathe down their necks.

  2. Dave Goss says:

    Are you serious *edited

  3. Kevin G says:

    He’s been riding so well there…

  4. bob kistnasamy says:

    Really sad. Grant was doing some fine work in HK and was expected to emulate the talents of Doug Whyte, Felix Coetzee, Anthony Delpech and Jeff Lloyd.
    Indications are that , as in most circumstances, there is greater emphasis on the words and comments of individuals rather that the ability.
    Nevertheless it would be great to have him back and it is certain that he will exercise his strength and confidence elsewhere.

  5. Gazza says:

    I must say, it is ridiculous that Moreira and Purton get to pick the best in every race! They both great but also on best horse in race, prepped by other jocks!

  6. Speedyvar says:

    Gazza,do also think it is ridiculous that Marcus gets to pick the best in every race? Most probable prepped by other jocks.

  7. Cecil Pienaar says:

    Sad ☹️. Good, no, Very Good Jockey

  8. gavin says:

    very sad news…grant is top class.. he comes back a very wealthy man

  9. Nico says:

    It was expected.He has a long record of suspensions for reckless riding local and overseas.

  10. Michael Jacobs says:

    What did Nico not understand in the article? This was not due to race-riding or integrity related issues?

  11. Brian says:

    Would be best to comment once details of why they have “fired him” are clear. Just because he is from SA doesn’t make him innocent or anything he does. Let’s not jump to conclusions please

    1. Editor says:

      Agree, Brian

  12. Speedyvar says:

    Nico, so you expected him to be delicensed for something that has nothing to do with racing because he has a long record of suspensions for reckless riding.

  13. Reggie Naicker says:

    It’s expected he’s a reckless rider but also top class Jockey

  14. B d steele says:

    Maybe because the other two were getting the best rides he stuck his mouth and perhaps his nose into things he should not have ,

  15. Cecil Pienaar says:

    Brian, Mr Editor. Good point, maybe better to run the article until all the facts are known ? 🤔

  16. Donald says:

    Brian and Ed are correct , I trust the reasons for the withdrawal of his jockeys licence will come to light so that ALL can have a better understanding of what has transpired that caused the H.K.J.C. to arrive at such a drastic decision !

    Reading between the lines , which one is forced to do at present , it appears to me that the reasons could be entirely ” off the racecourse ” ?

    However , the possibility exists that due to circumstances both parties have agreed that the above press release will be the extent of the information provided and if that is the situation that does not bode well for transparency in horse racing I am afraid to say ?

  17. Danyaal Adams says:

    Grant has always proved himself from the trash in the gutter rides to pulling 100-1 long shot wins to prove he is the top class jockster.But always threatened the stable favourites as them working harder to compete isn’t in their grasps.its been given all the easy winners.Grant come back and ride them f…. Up again in Cape town.Since you left racing has been (*edited).Danyaal from Cape town

  18. Pops says:

    It all seemed to start off when he did not pitch to ride in a barrier trial on Friday.
    Trainer had to quickly get a replacement jockey.Trainer then informed stewards.
    News report states—- It is understood he was involved in a domestic dispute.
    And Hong Kong Jockey Club has a Domestic Violence Prevention Centre

  19. Ian says:

    Hugely talented rider!
    Massive life changing opportunity lost!
    Was it worth it?

  20. PL.NEL says:

    HK is a very professional setup, pity grant blew it as he certainly has the talent but his riding record is tainted which every way one looks at it. Local interviews before he left whiffed more of arrogance than confidence. Very few get these kind of chances and talent means very little if you are not humble.

  21. King Chris says:

    Sad for him but why doesn’t he say what happened instead of keeping us guessing 3 sides to every story the Hong Kong jockey Club, his side and the truth

  22. Daniel Snyman says:

    Grant was delicensed because he was involved in a”domestic” issue. The HKJ does not intervene once police are involved and for some reason this could have been quite an acute matter. He had already copped 5 bans totalling HK200 000, one more than Vincent Ho and 2 more than Moreira, who was supposedly challenging Purton for the championship. Purton has all but sewn up the championship. Grant at 28 years old is still very young and the experience he gained is invaluable, not to mention the HK56 million he earned in stakes. The HKJ sets the highest standards in world and you have to follow line whether at the racecourse or at your place of abode. Discipline and integrity are characteristics of a world class jockey and Grant will reach those heights in the near future.

  23. Stewart says:

    Chase Majean was hardest working jockey in kzn.Only jockey to ride 7 days a week but did all the work only for “top jockeys” to steal the rides.Thank God for Jbg trainers especially Mr Woodroffe to acknowledge his work ethic and give him chances.Today he earns a more than decent existance thanks to decency and courage of jbg trainsrs.Yes Grant vniekerk was certainly a threat to Moirera and Purton.One wonders what they have in store for Teetaan

  24. Stewart says:

    Grantget boot for “domestic “issue. We all know what Muzi did one friday evening at Greyville.Would love Muzis take on this one

  25. Stewart says:

    Hollywoodbets HorseRacing “lOpenbets” alone turns over at least 5 times the national tote.Please Mr Heffer take over horseracing completely and we will have stakes relative to Hong Kong.They keep finding people who have no knowledge of racing to further put racing on the road to” extinction”.Another “idiot” in terms of racing game appointed.Save our beautiful game please Owen Heffer

  26. Dennis Isaacs says:

    Come home Grant…..we need you here
    Championship awaits you here

  27. Ravi says:

    To King Chris. When it comes to HKJC there are no 3 sides like here in SA. .. They run an extremely professional outfit if not an institution. The HKJC has been around for years and the transparency they adopt is not to be scoffed at. Other racing operators the world over including our very own here in SA would need to jump over the moon just to keep pace with the HKJC. Their entire operation is something we can only marvel from afar. We have to pay for everything when it comes to SA racing… Racecards, video replays or the lack of thereof, statistical dissemination, historical data, barrier trials, gallops, etc. If they dismissed G van Niekerk with immediate effect, he has flouted their principles.

  28. Pater chan says:

    Don’t know why people always say Joao and Zac pack the horses. As a horse owner, would you request best jockeys riding your horse with the prize money in Hong Kong?

  29. Hawk says:

    Good horse than Moreira can win…give CY Ho Ride he also can win…..

  30. Sam says:

    The South China Morning Post reports that HKJC officials advised that police are not involved in the matter and that Van Niekerk has remained in Hong Kong for the time being.

    “There has never been any police involvement in anything that has led the club to make the decision to withdraw the licence,” executive director of racing Andrew Harding said.

    Van Niekerk was scheduled to ride Alcari in a barrier trial at Sha Tin on Friday morning, but did not show up and Alex Lai Hoi-wing jumped on at the last minute, prompting trainer Ricky Yiu Poon-fai to address the issue with stewards.

  31. Kay says:

    What a pity. There goes my Hong Kong race watching also.

  32. Michael Jacobs says:

    I agree with Kay. I followed Hong Kong mainly because of Grant and Karis Teetan, and in the past Dougie Whyte and the other South African jockeys. I would go through the racecard and circle the SA jockeys, hoping that they would beat Moreia and Purton. Now that Grant is out, i won’t bother to watch or punt in Hong Kong anymore.

    1. Editor says:

      Michael, maybe another SA jockey gets an opportunity to replace Grant?
      The ranks are thin in HK

  33. Michael Jacobs says:

    True. Hopefully Aldo Domeyer goes back and knocks the socks off Purton and Moreira. Richard Fourie could also give those prima donnas a run for their money!

  34. Dave other says:

    Like Michael (and Kay), I too would watch HK racing because of Grant (and Aldo) hoping that they would upstage the top 2 …..and even started to place some small bets. Now that Grant has been given the boot, I will also stop watching.
    I can’t however quite reconcile a “domestic dispute” and “not pitching up for a work ride” or was the former story/allegation effectively refuted by the HKJC spokesperson ?

  35. Hutch says:

    Come to Australia Grant, the Aussies always speak good about you!

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