where the horse is always the hero
Article Item
Posted 2021-06-11 09:20:49  

It took hard work and a lot of head scratching, but the stable of trainer Sharon Kotzen is back on track.
Well, not just back on track, the stable is in red-hot form, and produced 6 winners, 5 second places and 4 thirds over the last two weeks at Fairview.

“The stable had a bit of a bug doing the rounds. The team worked hard, losing some hair in the process, but things are looking better,” Kotzen said.
Alan Greeff and Gavin Smith are topping the trainers log in the Eastern Cape, but Kotzen is a clear third with 48 winners and more than a month of the season still left.

“It is a bit nerve wracking when the stable is going through a quiet time, especially if you don’t know the reason for it.
“When a horse is working well and you tell the owner it should finish in the first three, but then it is a bad run, it is worrying.
“What I usually do is take blood tests, ease back on the work and freshen the horses up,” Kotzen explained.
She is definitely taking note of the fact that the stable is within reach of 50 winners.
“Yes, it is something we aim for. Hopefully we can do better than the 55 winners (in 2018).”
Kotzen started with 7 horses in 2016 and said her break came with the support of owner Peter De Beyer.

“The most horses I had in training were 72 but at the moment I have about 58 if you include the babies.
“And it is not easy to win races at Fairview. Racing is very competitive.”
Cape Town based jockey Luyolo Mxothwa has struck up a good relationship with the stable and is also in tremendous form.
“We have come a long way with Luyolo. He has been very loyal to the stable.
“He chose to be in Port Elizabeth when there were Covid-19 travel restrictions placed on the jockeys.
“Luyolo has always been underrated and wasn’t getting the opportunities he deserved.”
So will Kotzen get to the 50 winners this Friday?

“I don’t think my card is as strong as the last meetings but we might get there.
“Bobbety Boo (race 2) can maybe be competitive and if Cleto (race 3) can produce the same run as last time, he could be there.
“A decent run is expected of Wild Earth (race 4) and Upper Ten (race 5) is a special horse to me. I am always hoping for a good run from her. Mousey On Over (race 7) is consistent.”

Text: Henk Steenkamp
Image: Pauline Herman 

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