Former top trainer Peter ‘PK’ Kannemeyer sadly passed away at his Milnerton residence on Monday morning at the age of 85 following a long battle with illness.
After half a century in the game first as a heavyweight jockey and then a highly successful trainer, he handed over the reins to son Dean in 1999.
He trained some top horses in his career, the best probably betting Over The Air with whom he won the Durban July in 1979.
Over The Air also went on to win the Queen’s Plate the following year.
He won the Met three times, his first in 1980 with Sunshine Man and then again in 1992 with Divine Master and finally in 1994 with Pas De Quoi.
Most of his big winners were ridden by Garth Puller. In a recent interview for Computaform, Dean expressed the major part his father had played in his own development.
“My father was always keen for me to study and get a qualification, and then come back to racing.
But I spent more time being at the yard and riding work than doing my homework, so that never got off the ground.”
“I had an excellent grounding both in life and as a trainer from my father, who always did his best to stop me neglecting my school-work.”
Bloodstock agent John Free-man also paid tribute to Kannemeyer.
“Peter suffered two strokes in the past two years, the second one was particularly rough on him. I visited him in hospital a few times and found him extremely emotional and frustrated at betting so badly disabled.
Peter was always such a happy, fun-to-be-around person until his wife Patti died of cancer.
He never quite got out of the rut that her passing put him in. I have very fond memories of many years of friendship and work with PK.
“PK was the life and soul of every dinner party – and we had many.
Peter Kannemeyer is survived by his children Dean, Mark, Lisa and grandchildren.
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