Mat de Kock: ‘Invest In SA Breds – Race In Australia’

Action starts at 10h00 today

Ahead of the two day 2024 Bloodstock SA National Yearling Sale which starts at 10h00 today, Cranbourne-based Mathew de Kock has called on South African breeders to promote their horses by joining together to send a number of yearlings to Australia so that they can compete on the major tracks Down Under and show their worth.

Mathew, who is into his third year in a so far highly successful partnership with trainer Robbie Griffiths said on the website that he had no doubt that South African runners will be competitive Down Under, and that his famous Dad shares his belief.

Mathew de Kock – a big opportunity! (Pic –

“But the local buyers I have spoken to are not sure. They’ve only seen Yulong Prince (Surcharge) in action here, so they are hesitant. If we can get a group of SA-breds to race here, we can prove to Australia and to the world how competitive they can be. Then, I am sure, the international buyers will flock to South Africa.”

Mat added: “It will be nice if some of those runners can come to me to train, but this is not a personal promotion, it is about getting SA-breds into the limelight in a massive and spectacular racing jurisdiction. If runners are exported and placed with high-profile trainers like Chris Waller, Bjorn Baker, Peter Moody, the Hayes-partnership or Gai Waterhouse, it will be just as good. This will be an exercise in marketing the South African thoroughbred, in which I and many others have faith. Also it will be good for these trainers to see how tough and durable South African horses are, alongside their ability.”

Mat suggested that the leading South African breeders select, for example, 10 of their best between them, to be shipped for racing to Australia. “South Africa has any number of world-class breeders. If they can get a handful of runners on a plane, they can share the costs with buyers importing horses to Hong Kong, Dubai or elsewhere.”

With the new export protocols in place, horses bought in South Africa and destined for Australia are required to stay anywhere in Europe for six months before they can be shipped on to Australia. They will not be quarantined there, however and will be allowed to train normally, with no restrictions. Mat said: “This means that yearlings bought at the National Sale can reach Australia in a state of good fitness during the early part of their two-year-old careers, with their three-year-old careers ahead of them. The prize monies are huge, racing opportunities are ample and the exposure is excellent.”

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