Barry IrwinBarry Irwin (Team Valour)Team Valor International and Mike de Kock Stables have parted ways. The successful pairing had numerous horses of world class stature, including the likes of Irridescence (SAf) and Ipi Tombe (Zim). The partnership took Dubai racing by storm over the past few years setting track records and capturing some of the biggest races in that region.

Crimson Palace (SAf), one of the most talented fillies to leave South Africa, was owned by Team Valor before being sold to Godolphin. She went on to win the GI Beverly D. in Chicago. Said Barry Irwin of Team Valor to “We both learned a lot that will help us in moving forward in international racing and I will always have a good feeling about him because of the success and fun we shared together.” Irwin, whose Team Valor also owned American bound Little Miss Magic (SAf), a South African-bred Group 1 winner, continued, ”As far as racing partners and trainers go, I have been in racing for more than 30 years and still use my original trainer and have clients from my first syndication. I still race horses with the first guy I bought yearlings for in the early 1970s.”

Mike De KockMike De Kock
Irwin has transferred his horses from de Kock to a variety of trainers in South Africa. “Between Mike (de Kock) and Neil Bruss deciding to move to England, we have had to move several horses in the past month. They were dispersed among Geoff Woodruff, Ormond Ferraris, Glen Kotzen, Wendy Whitehead, Mike Azzie and Mike Bass,” Irwin added.

No doubt Mike de Kock will have his own take on the subject, but one thing’s for sure, between the two of them, Ipi Tombi, Crimson Palace and Irridescence in particular they’ve painted our names as brightly as we might have hoped.

Extract from TDN 28/08/07