It took eleven-time South African Champion Jockey Michael Roberts all of 15 rides in the big race before he broke the ice and partnered the David Ferraris-trained Super Quality to Durban July victory back in 1997.
After Saturday’s sizzling Gr1 Daily News 2000 victory by 3yo See It Again in the hands of Piere Strydom, it is clear that the Summerveld trainer has an outstanding chance of emulating his former saddle colleagues David Payne and Bert Abercrombie, the only two men in history to have ridden and trained a Durban July winner.
David Payne, now a successful trainer in Australia, won the race aboard the Brian Cherry-trained Chimboraa in 1967 and saddled the mighty In Full Flight to victory just four years later with Raymond Rhodes in the irons.
The late Bert Abercrombie rode the grey Jamaican Music in 1976 and saddled Bush Telegraph to win with Garth Puller aboard in 1987.
The Gr1 Daily News 2000 has always been a key race going forward into the Gr1 Hollywoodbets Durban July and See It Again is now set to join the likes of Dynasty (2003), Big City Life (2009) and Legislate (2014).
It will also give Piere Strydom the opportunity to equal Anton Marcus’ five winner benchmark.
Strydom previously won the big one on London News (1996), Trademark (2001), Pomodoro (2012) and The Conglomerate (2016).
Watch the 1997 Super Quality replay here:
What they said after Saturday’s Gr1 Daily News 2000:
Jockey Piere Strydom:
“There’s no place like riding at Hollywoodbets Greyville. Muis said to me to rather have him relaxed at the back and let him run on. Sometimes there’s not much you can do and just hope your horse is good enough. But when I shook him up about the mile, because I couldn’t get out of my ground, I could feel straight away that there was just an engine underneath me. I think there is still a bit left in the tank, so he’ll peak for the July.”
Trainer Michael Roberts:
“My main worry was to bring him here in tip-top condition, which we did. It has been a couple of nerve wracking days with him, but you know, he’s such an easy horse to work with. To KZN, I’m so proud to bring you a champion. To the well-wishers, I appreciate your support.”
Owner Nick Jonsson:
“He’s a wonderful horse. It’s a bit of fairytale being a 3 parts brother to Do It Again. For the stud book, these are the important races to win”.