12-times Dutch Champion Jockey and recent German Champion Adrie de Vries rode his 100th Group winner on Saturday aboard Light The Lights, a South African-bred runner trained by Mike de Kock.
Light The Lights has a Silvano half-sister on offer at the National Yearling Sale in April (25-26), at the TBA Complex in Johannesburg.
Light The Lights came away to win the Gr3 Abu Dhabi Championship over 2200m by 0.75-lengths, capturing the lion’s share of AED330,000 (App R1,1-million).
It would have been fitting to say a Dutchman rode his 100th for a Dutchman but De Kock claims to be of Anglo-French origin. However, there are other similarities between the pair – they are well accomplished around the world and after Saturday both have won Group races in nine countries!
De Kock has trained Group winners from South Africa to Turkey, the 49-year-old De Vries has ridden Group 1 winners in the UK, France, Germany and Italy – though a Group win in Ahu Dhabi had until now evaded him.
“Adrie did a lot of work for us in Dubai last year so it was nice to reward him with a winner. He is well above average,” said De Kock.
Light The Lights, by Western Winter, was bred by Anne and Bruce Nicholas of Hallmark Thoroughbreds. He has turned into a useful international performer with two wins at the Dubai Carnival and now his Abu Dhabi success for owner Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum.
Light The Lights, out of the brilliant broodmare First Arrival by Northern Guest, is a half-brother to British export In The Fast Lane, Pack Leader, and four other Black Type horses. First Arrival has produced 9 runners and 9 winners to date.
*Drakenstein-bred Singapore Sling contests the BMW Hong Kong Derby at Sha Tin today.