Jack Milner: After a small hiccup which delayed his comeback, Piere Strydom has been cleared to ride by the National Horseracing Authority (NHA) and will be back in action at Hollywoodbets Greyville on Sunday.
The former multiple champion jockey had hoped to be back in the irons by now, but the NHA wanted to ensure he had been medically cleared and was fit enough to ride.
In the interim Strydom has been out at Randjesfontein riding work and has no doubt he is fit enough to make his mark.
One item he specifically desired was a ride in the Hollywoodbets Durban July on Saturday 2 July and that aspiration was granted by Justin Snaith who gave him the ride on 2020 Durban July champion Belgarion.
“Today (Monday) I was given a clearance to ride by the NHA and in order to get in as many rides as possible before the Durban July, I will be riding at Greyville on Sunday and Monday, then at the Vaal on Tuesday (28 June) and Turffontein (30 June) before going back to KZN for the Durban July meeting,” said Strydom on Monday.
While the card for the Sunday’s meeting has yet to be finalized, Strydom will be riding Nexus for the Snaith yard in Sunday’s R600,000 KwaZulu-Natal Breeders Mile for KZN bred three-year-olds and older (Non-Black Type) over 1600m.
“The problem with Sunday’s meeting is that a lot of the horses come in with very light weights which makes it difficult to find suitable rides,” added Strydom.
Strydom has not been seen in action for a year. His main goals are to get at least another 11 winners which will round off his career total to 5,500 and add another Durban July winner to his record.
He has won the Durban July four times – London News (1996), Trademark (2001,) Pomodoro (2012) and The Conglomerate (2016) – and would like to equal the record of five, currently held by Anton Marcus.