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Son Of Raj (Picture: JC Photos)


Durbanite Steven Chetty, who has owned horses for well over a decade and is now also a breeder, is still in dreamland at present as his homebred Grade 1 SA Derby winner Son Of Raj is not only one of the automatic qualifiers for the Hollywoodbets Durban July, but he has two homebreds nominated for the Highveld Feature Season Stayers Awards which are to be held at The Venue, Melrose Arch, on Saturday evening. 

“I still can’t believe I have a July runner and it is an honour just to be nominated for the awards,” he said.

Son Of Raj is one of the nominees and the other one is Arumugam, who has won two Listed staying races this season on the Highveld and he has finished second and third respectively in two Grade 3 staying events.

Son Of Raj and Arumugam are full-brothers, being by Duke Of Marmalade out of Black Minnaloushe mare Freudiana, and Steven bred both of them.

Steven named them after his adoptive father Arumugam and his late biological father Raj respectively.

The nominees for the 2023 Highveld Feature Season Awards are:

Champion two year old filly
Only one nominee – will be announced at the Awards function
Champion two year old colt/gelding
Only one nominee – will be announced at the Awards function
Champion three year old filly
Bless My Stars
Lady Of Power
None Other
Champion three year old colt/gelding
Anfields Rocket
Billy Bowlegs
Eye Of The Prophet
Royal Victory
Union Square
Champion older filly/mare
Desert Miracle
Princess Calla
Rain In Holland
Champion older horse
Puerto Manzano (ARG)
Trip Of Fortune
Champion sprinter
Princess Calla
Champion Middle distance horse
Anfields Rocket
Bless My Stars
Desert Miracle
Puerto Manzano (ARG)
Trip Of Fortune
Champion Stayer
Future Pearl
Son Of Raj
The Chairman of the voting process is Nico Kritsiotis, and he is joined on the panel by Jack Milner and Lyall Cooper.
Some categories were fairly predictable, and others attracted lengthy discussion.
However, by the conclusion of the deliberations the judges were satisfied that a fair process had taken place and the correct decisions were taken.
Winners in the following categories are based on a points structure and will be announced at the Awards function:
Champion Work Rider
Champion Apprentice
Champion Breeder of the season
Champion Owner of the season
Champion Jockey of the season
Champion Trainer of the season
The following points structure was applied:
Grade 1
Grade 2
9-6 -4
Grade 3
2 – –
All equine winners are then eligible for the prestigious Horse of the Season award.