Horse And Rider Unscathed After Incident

Some untidy racing on the Greyville turf

A year after making an unlikely comeback to the saddle in the Cape, Piet Botha made a return to Greyville on Saturday and found himself unceremoniously dumped on the turf.

Piet Botha – lucky escape

The 41 year old Botha has enjoyed plenty of success with Glen Puller at Milnerton and has managed to persevere – unlike his colleague Jannie Bekker, who returned to the riding ranks at the same time, but who appears to have subsequently thrown in the towel.

On Saturday Botha hit the front at the top of the straight in the Greyville seventh on the 3yo Steel Rose. But after the son of Gitano Hernando tired in the final stages, he appeared to become squeezed between African Night Sky (Grant van Niekerk)  and Mambo Mime (Keagan de Melo) and seemed to clip the heels of the Snaith July fancy and stumble – in the process dislodging his rider.

The original issue may well have been caused by the winner Star Express drifting across and bumping Sylvester The Cat  who in turn sideswiped Count Tassilo on to Mambo Mime..

In respect of not getting his mount up to win, Grant van Niekerk subsequently apologised to the connections and the public for his ride on African Night Sky – “it wasn’t one of my best”, he said.

This was not the only race on the afternoon that proved untidy in the final stages.

Watch the incident here

Garth Puller told the Sporting Post on Sunday morning that both horse and rider were shaken but fine.

An injury while riding work at Summerveld in 2010 ended with Botha throwing in the towel at the end of 2013. Over his injuries, he returned to ride in April 2017..

He assists in the Glen Puller yard and has ridden 8 winners this term.

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