Kyle Strydom (Pauline Herman Photography)
ON June 10 three years ago apprentice jockey Kyle Strydom rode his first winner in a professional race when he won with Transonic for the Dennis Bosch stable at Hollywoodbets Scottsville.
The riding instructions to the young man was to go and enjoy himself.
On his return to the winners’ circle Bosch had a question for Kyle: “Well, did you enjoy it.”
Strydom certainly did and three years later, 10 June was yet again a red-letter day for him and the well-known Strydom racing family.
Kyle received the news in the United Kingdom that he is now a fully-fledged professional jockey.
He joined Roger Varian’s team in Newmarket at the end of May and is also getting support from former South African trainer Dylan Cunha. Strydom rode his first UK winner for the Cunha yard early in April.
Kyle hails from Gqeberha and is the son of Fairview trainer Jacques, and the nephew of the legendary jockey Pieré Strydom.
In his first year Kyle won the South African apprentice title and last season he was the East Cape apprentice champion.
At Fairview he showed he can win the big races when he won two Listed races for his dad on the filly Cheré For Me – the EC Fillies Nursery and the Lady’s Slipper Stakes. He also did very well for the Zietsman Oosthuizen stable.
Before he relocated to the UK, Strydom broke his wrist in a fall at Fairview and had to go through a long rehabilitation process before he could return to the track.
Now it is exciting times for Kyle as a professional rider and
he was quick to thank all the trainers and owners for their support, and for the Ludeim sponsorship of Suzette and Basie Viljoen which helped him on his journey.