Fresh on the heels of riding his first Group 1 since returning to Australia, international rider Jeff Lloyd will squeeze in a trip to his home country, South Africa, to try win the Group 1 that has eluded him during his illustrious career.

Jeff Lloyd

Jeff Lloyd will travel home to South Africa to try and win the Durban July - photo © Daniel Costello

Lloyd took out the Group 1 $500,000 Sky Racing Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) at Eagle Farm last Saturday on Pear Tart for the John Thompson stable edging his Group 1 tally towards ninety.

But the Group 1 Vodacom Durban July (2200m) at Greyville on July 7 is the race he would love to win so he will return to South Africa after he fulfils his engagement at the Sunshine Coast on the weekend.

“There are two very big races, the Durban July and the J&B Metropolitan,” Lloyd said.

“The J&B Met has been very good to me, I’ve won it five times but I’ve never won the July which is why I’m going back.”

Lloyd will be riding the Mike Bass trained Chesalon who is coming into the Group 1 with a last start third over 1900m at Greyville on May 22 after finishing second over 1400m at the same track on May 5.

Lloyd has six rides at the Sunshine Coast including Startsmeup in the Listed $175,000 Reed Property Group Glasshouse Handicap (1400m) which he won at Ipswich two weeks ago.

“I was very impressed with the horse,” Lloyd said.

“I thought when I got on him, `whatever he does today he will improve on it’. He won so I was very happy. I took the ride straight away.”

His has also been engaged to ride Count Encosta for Thompson in the Listed $200,000 Signwave Caloundra Cup (2400m) and the John Sargeant trained Largo Da Barra in the other feature race on the card the Listed $100,000 XXXX Sunshine Coast Guineas (1600m).

The Sunshine Coast track has been rated a heavy 10 after a week of rain and authorities are desperately hoping the wet weather subsides leading into the weekend.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.