SAJA Awards The Top Achievers

SA Champion Kyle Strydom leads the way

The world renowned SA Jockey Academy held their 2021 Prizegiving on Friday at the Summerveld Training Centre to celebrate the young trainee riders’ achievements over the past year.

Graeme Hawkins was Master of Ceremonies.

Various invited guests were present, including the Hollywoodbets team. The Hollywood Foundation sponsors bursaries for 16 of the apprentices.

Former SAJA graduate and Hollywood Syndicate Racing Manager Anthony Delpech handed gifts to the qualifying apprentices. Thabiso Gumede was on hand to receive his, while Jabu Jacobs was absent.

SA Champion Apprentice Kyle Strydom walked off with a host of awards, and would have made his Gqeberha-based family very proud when announced as Head Boy for 2022.

Mutiple achiever Kyle Strydom receives an award from Graeme Hawkins (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

All the awards and the recipients:

  • Robbie Thompson Award – Kyle Strydom

Awarded to an apprentice who has displayed courtesy and excellent manners throughout the year.

  • The South African Jockey Academy Ambassador Trophy – Kyle Strydom

Awarded to an apprentice who represents the Academy nationally and internationally in a positive and professional manner.

  • The Lindsay Family Floating Trophy – Rachel Venniker

Awarded to a first year apprentice who has shown the most riding progress during the year.

  • The Happy Chimes Trophy – Kyle Strydom

Awarded to a second year apprentice who has shown the most riding progress during the year.

  • The Bennie Norton Trophy – Philasande Mxoli

Awarded to an apprentice in their third year who does not have the advantages of coming from a horse racing family, and who has achieved success against all odds.

  • The Oric Pretorious Trophy for Esprit d’corps – Siphesihle Hlengwa

Awarded to an apprentice who has demonstrated good fellowship.

  • The Ronald Khumalo Prize – Wiseman Njokwe

Awarded to an apprentice who shows a constant positive attitude towards owners, trainers and their peers.

  • Headmaster’s Award – Siphesihle Hlengwa

Award given at the discretion of the headmaster. This year it goes to an apprentice who has shown courage, determination, perseverance, and is proof that positivity can overcome any adversity.

All the winners on a happy day (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

  • “Are You Happy Boy” Trophy – Rachel Venniker

Awarded to a first year apprentice that best embodies the following values: dedication, discipline, enthusiasm, hard work, humbleness, impeccable manners, respect, passion and a willingness to learn.

  • McDonald Trophy – Wiseman Njokwe

Awarded to a 3rd to 5th year apprentice resident in KwaZulu-Natal. Factors taken into account are: jockeyship, courtesy, horsemanship, co-operation, integrity, personality, and striving to avoid infraction of racing rules.

  • Vinay Harry Inter-House Trophy – Jonsson House

Inter-house Challenge that tallies points for Academics, race riding, sporting activities, and special events.

  • Justin Bircher Most Improved Athlete Trophy – Rachel Venniker

Awarded to an apprentice who has improved the most throughout the year.

  • Justin Bircher Athlete of the Year Trophy – Thabiso Gumede

Awarded to an apprentice who has produced the highest ranking scores throughout the year.

  • The Keri Strachan Excellence in Nutrition and Weight Award – Siphesihle Hlengwa

Awarded to an apprentice that complies with the Academy nutrition programme and is commited to their individual nutrition strategy. They consistently achieve their goal weight, with healthy body fat, within a tight margin.

  • EQASA (Equestrain Qualifications Authority of SA) Exams for 2nd and 3rd Year Apprentices – Keratile Katjedi and Hendrik Lombard


  • The Elizabeth Jonsson Trophy – Keratile Katjedi

Awarded to an apprentice in Grade 11 with the highest results in the EQASA exams.

  • The Racing and Equestrian Floating Trophy – Donald Geerthsen (and Full Academic Colours)

Awarded to apprentice for Highest Aggregate in Grade 11

  • The Nicky Armstrong Proxime Accessit Trophy – Siyanda Sosibo

Awarded to apprentice for Highest Academic Results in Grade 12

  • The Nicky Armstrong Dux Trophy – Siphesihle Hlengwa – DUX for 2021

Awarded to apprentice who achieves the highest academic results in Grade 12.

Hollywoodbets’ Anthony Delpech congratulates Thabiso Gumede as Graham Bailey looks on (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

  • Qualifying Apprentices

Jabu Jacobs

Thabiso Gumede

  • Head Boy for 2022

Kyle Strydom

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