This past weekend, the who’s who of the equestrian world met in Johannesburg for the coveted Highveld Feature Season horseracing awards ceremony to honor the victors of the evening.
The room was buzzing with anticipation as the guests awaited the announcement of the Champion Apprentice of the season award.
Among the contenders was Philasande Mxoli, a young and determined jockey who had made waves in the racing community over the past three years. Known for his unwavering dedication and remarkable skills, Mxoli had captured the hearts of fans and professionals alike.
Having participated in thoroughbred races in the Eastern Cape since she was thirteen years old and having rode more than 90 winners there, Philasande is well known in horse racing. His achievements include two triumphs aboard Remember and Final Judgement in the popular Berlin November horserace.
Mxoli joined the SA Jockey Academy in 2019, clocking his first win aboard Manaftermidnight at Flamingo Park on 20 January 2020. He has formed successful associations with a number of Highveld strings and his successes this season include the Gr3 Victory Moon Stakes, Gr3 Magnolia Handicap, Gr3 Sycamore Sprint and Listed Spook Express Stakes.
Lopez Magongo one of the Owners and Trainers in the Eastern Cape Rural Racing helped him to apply and join the Academy.
Congratulating Mxoli, Magongo said that this recognition will likely open up new opportunities for Mxoli in his career. “It could lead to more prominent racing partnerships and attract attention from trainers and owners in the industry.
Luthando Bara, the founder of the Berlin November horserace where Mxoli’s career started said that his story serves as a reminder that dreams can come true with dedication, passion, and an unwavering belief in oneself. He proved that no matter where you come from or the challenges you face, with the right amount of determination and love for your craft, he will achieve greatness and leave an indelible mark on the world of horseracing.
“Winning such an award often brings increased visibility and credibility, which can further propel Philasande’s professional journey”. He added.