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Ad King Magnus after winning the VRC Community Plate and booking himself a spot in the VRC-CRV Winter Championship Final. (Brett Holburt/Racing Photos)

King Magnus right to go in Final

27 June 2023 Written by Craig Brennan – Racing & Sports

Having missed out on the final heat of the Winter Championship at Flemington, King Magnus will be right to go for the Final.

Trainers Robbie Griffiths and Mathew de Kock are not concerned that King Magnus missed a start in the final heat of the VRC-CRV Winter Championship Series.

A bad blood picture taken days before the final heat of the series at Flemington on June 17 forced King Magnus to miss the event after earlier wins in the series on May 13 and June 3.

It will be four weeks between runs for King Magnus when he takes his place in the Listed VRC-CRV Winter Championship Final (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday, but de Kock said the gelding is back on top of his game and ready for the contest.

“He's absolutely perfect now. He galloped on the grass on Thursday and galloped very well." - Mathew de Kock

“He had a bad blood, so we took him out last week,” de Kock said.

“We do bloods routinely and there were no external signs that anything was wrong, so if we did not take the blood we would not have known if anything was brewing or had been brewing.

“So, we pulled him out, but he's absolutely perfect now. He galloped on the grass on Thursday and galloped very well.

“His bloods are back to normal, so it's all systems go.”

King Magnus, who had spent a year off the scene to give his ageing body a chance to rest, had the benefit of Thomas Stockdale's 1.5kg when successful at his past two starts.

That claim will not be available on Saturday, but de Kock does not believe it will hinder the gelding's chances.

“I don't think he needed the claim the way he won his last two starts,” de Kock said.

“He won so convincingly, so we'll see what he can do on Saturday.” - Mathew de Kock

While King Magnus will do his bit for the stable at Flemington on Saturday, de Kock will be watching from afar as he is returning to South Africa for a holiday and will take in the Durban July at Greyville.

De Kock's father, Mike De Kock, is chasing a sixth win in the Grade 1 race and will have two representatives – Safe Passage and Dave The King.

“The Durban July, it's the equivalent of the Melbourne Cup in regard to the popularity of the race,” de Kock said.

“The old man has got two runners, so I'll go over and watch that.”

King Magnus ridden by Thomas Stockdale winning the VRC Community Plate. (Brett Holburt/Racing Photos)


Join us for Flemington Finals Race Day and the culmination of the Winter Race Series. With $1.53 million in prizemoney on offer across finals for nine categories, including four Listed races, the series is for horses young, up-and-coming and established, sprinters, milers and stayers. With an honour roll that includes Nature Strip, Tuvalu, Gytrash and Passive Aggressive, who will emerge as the next star of the turf? Be there to find out, find tickets here.

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