No margins for error

The elegantly youthful Michelle Rix formed a training partnership with her father, Harold Crawford, in August 2019, and they’ve achieved remarkable success in less than two years since. On Saturday, the father/daughter combination won the G1 Vodacom Durban July, the single race every South African dreams of attending, let alone winning.

It takes rare skill, patience and horsemanship to bring a horse to Durban July level and, to win it, even more so. There is simply no margin for error in the build-up to this race and in the race itself, and through their feats with three-year-old Kommetdieding, the Rix/Crawford team has shown they’re well up to the task.

Per Covid-19 regulations, no fans were allowed at Greyville last Saturday, but Michelle gained a host of new fans watching the spectacle around the world and she was on a cloud when we spoke to her, all the same. She’s set her sights on winning this prestigious race again in front of the July’s customary 50,000-plus fans.

Michelle is only the second female trainer in South African history to stand in the VDJ winner’s box, and she paid tribute to her dad, a veteran of over 50 years in the training ranks who himself was almost speechless after Kommetdieding’s sensational win.

Here’s our snap Q&A with Racing’s Lady Of The Moment:

  1. Full name? Michelle Rix
  2. Date of Birth? 26 February 1986
  3. Steak or sushi? Steak
  4. Superstitions? Don’t walk through the winners box
  5. Fav Holiday Destination? Barcelona
  6. Which: BMW or Merc? Neither… Audi
  7. Who inspires you the most? My Mom
  8. Big night out or quiet night in? Quiet night in
  9. Left-handed or right-handed? Left handed
  10. Milnerton or Summerveld? Summerveld
  11. What annoys you the most? Ignorant people
  12. Cape racing: Limited season or year-long? Year long
  13. Funniest person you have ever met? Joanne Knowles
  14. The Cape Met or Durban July? Both
  15. Strict whip rules or no whip at all? Strict whip rules
  16. What is your biggest phobia? Claustrophobia
  17. Most embarrassing moment? Falling and chipping my front tooth with friends
  18. Colts or fillies? Colts
  19. Live or online auction sales? Live Auction
  20. Proudest Achievement? Winning the July, and my Daughter
  21. Economy or business class? Business (of Course)
  22. Your star sign? Pisces
  23. Single or taken? Taken
  24. Bath or shower? Shower
  25. Read or Netflix? Read
  26. Would you rather ask for permission or ask for forgiveness? Ask for forgiveness
  27. Nominate someone for our Q&A next? Gavin Lerena

Nominate two horses to follow for the rest of this year:
Desert Miracle & Captain Lannister

Chosen charity for readers to donate to:
TAFTA Care of the Elderly

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