Lyle Hewitson
Age: 26
Background:
Lyle Hewitson hails from a racing family as his father, Carl Hewitson, is a former jockey who is now a trainer. Hewitson started out in the saddle playing Polocrosse, excelling at both a provincial and national level. At age 12 he set his sights on becoming a jockey and began riding work in Port Elizabeth during school holidays. Instead of heading directly to the South African Jockeys’ Academy, Hewitson’s parents were adamant he finish school first, which meant that he began his race-riding career in work riders’ races outside of school hours. With an education under his belt, Hewitson joined the South African Jockey Academy in 2016 and landed his first win at his 10th ride, aboard Blizzard Belle at Fairview. The emerging talent finished runner-up in the apprentice championship that season with 73 wins. Hewitson secured the champion apprentice title in 2016/17 with 124 wins. He took the title again in 2017/18 with 184 wins and in doing so made history as the first apprentice to win the full South African Jockeys’ Championship since Michael Roberts in 1972/73. His most successful day in the saddle came when he landed a Group 1 double at Scottsville on Saturday, 25 May, 2019 in the Sun Gold Medallion and the SA Fillies Sprint. After departing from his first contract in Hong Kong with three winners, Hewitson campaigned to Japan for a two-month stint which he finished with 19 wins and a pair of Group 2 triumphs. After a short stint in Japan, Hewitson returned to South Africa to capture a third riding title in 2020/21, having ridden 263 winners. Returning to Hong Kong at the end of 2021, Hewitson struck with early success before a shocking fall in December stalled his headway. The affable South African made a remarkable return to race-riding in January, 2020 to close out the season with 27 wins. He enjoyed his first 50-win season through the 2022/23 term.
Achievements:
South Africa Champion Jockey (2017/18, 2018/19 & 2020/21); South Africa Champion Apprentice (2016/17 & 2017/18).
Notable wins include:
Thekwini Stakes (2021 Rain In Holland), Gauteng Summer Cup (2018 Tilbury Fort), Province Stakes (2018 Redberry Lane), Rising Sun Gold Challenge (2018 Undercover Agent), SA Fillies Sprint (2019 Celtic Sea), Sun Gold Medallion (2019 Eden Roc), Garden Province Stakes (2019 Celtic Sea), G2 Spring Stakes (2020 Galore Creek), G2 Aobo Sho (2020 Authority).
Hong Kong Career Wins (at start of 2023/24 season) :
80 (win strike rate 6.5%).
23/24 Season         Up to Race Meeting of 26/05/2024
Nationality : SAF No. of Wins : 33 Total Rides : 523
Stakes won : $64,231,005 No. of 2nds : 40 Win % : 6.31%
No. of Wins in past 10 race days : 2 No. of 3rds : 57
No. of 4ths : 50

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