Variety Club: Godolphin Mile winner will now be trained by Mike de KockPICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
Mike de Kock takes charge of Variety Club
VARIETY CLUB, winner of the Godolphin Mile on Dubai World Cup night, will continue his career in the care of Mike de Kock from his Newmarket base, with the trainer also taking charge of Heavy Metal, who was in action through the Dubai Carnival.
Variety Club defeated the De Kock-trained favourite Soft Falling Rain in the Group 2 at Meydan for another South Africa-based trainer Joey Ramsden, but will now be shipping over to Britain.
Winner of 16 of his 22 starts and dual South African Horse Of The Year, Variety Club's career has been overseen by Ramsden, though the six-year-old lodged with the De Kock string during the carnival.
The switch is considered a practical solution by the horse's owners Markus and Ingrid Jooste, and their racing manager, Derek Brugman, said: "There is nothing sinister in the move. It will just allow Joey to concentrate on his local string. Joey will also continue to benefit financially from Variety Club's success as much as he would have done as the trainer."
Brugman added Variety Club's first start for De Kock is slated to be the HK$12 million Champions Mile in Hong Kong on May 4 at Sha Tin.
Also joining De Kock's Newmarket operation is Heavy Metal, winner of the Group 1 Durban July in 2013, but well beaten in three carnival outings this year for Sean Tarry.
Tarry said: "He was invited to the World Cup meeting, but we didn't accept as he didn't pull up well from his last race. Dubai didn't suit him and he was pulling harder than he was used to. He will go to Mike de Kock's yard in Newmarket and be aimed at Hong Kong in December, although a lot has to go right between now and then."