Sky Sports Racing ambassador Hollie Doyle is set for an enormous Wednesday out in Hong Kong, participating for a 3rd time within the Longines International Jockeys’ Championship at Happy Valley, reside on Sky Sports Racing.
Honour to be using in Hong Kong Challenge
Being invited to experience towards the very best on this planet within the Longines International Jockeys’ Championship at Happy Valley on Wednesday (12.10pm to 2.10pm) for the third time is such a terrific honour.
It’s essentially the most prestigious jockeys’ problem on this planet, that includes 4 races value round £750,000, and I’m hoping to be fortunate sufficient to experience a winner on such an enormous stage – simply as I did final yr and on my debut again in 2020.
Doyle punches the air as Nashwa wins the Nassau Stakes at Goodwood
Becoming the primary feminine jockey to experience a winner in Hong Kong on Harmony N Blessed two years in the past nonetheless charges amongst my biggest achievements and it was particular to share second place with my husband Tom (Marquand), Mickael Barzalona and James McDonald 12 months in the past.
Thrilled to be using towards Aussie legend
It’s a privilege to be serving to make historical past at Happy Valley on Wednesday. It’ll be the primary time two main feminine jockeys have competed on the identical card when Australia’s Jamie Kah makes her Championship debut. She’s essentially the most profitable feminine rider down below with an incredible eight Group Ones to her title and over 1,100 wins.
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But the jockey we in all probability all should beat is five-times Hong Kong champion Zac Purton, who gained the problem final yr and is out to attain a file fourth success within the occasion.
Doyle and Trueshan
Tom is participating once more and we’ll even be joined by two acquainted faces, with our personal Ryan Moore – a twin winner himself – competing for the sixteenth time and Silvestre De Sousa qualifying from a powerful pool of Hong Kong-based riders.
James McDonald is the main contender for the Longines World’s Best Jockey award and would little question like to win this title, too, having completed second twice. We’ll even be up towards high Japanese rider Yuga Kawada, a Hong Kong Cup winner on the superior Loves Only You.
Good possibilities however two poor attracts
I can not profess to know so much in regards to the 4 horses I experience however I’m completely satisfied to associate Doug Whyte’s Universal Crown within the first leg, a 1000m dash. We have a troublesome extensive draw to beat however he is a speedy horse who ran effectively over an extra furlong final month.
My beginning place is kinder within the second leg over the prolonged mile on David Hall’s Kung Fu Tea who was in good type earlier this yr over 1400m, and I’m proper up towards the within rail in stall one on Francis Lui’s Rising From Ashes within the third leg, one other 1650m race.
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Leg 4, one other dash, leaves me with some work to do once more from stall 11. I experience Dennis Yip’s Stormtrouper, a son of Toronado who was a course-and-distance winner final yr, and still have 4 different rides on the cardboard for native trainers.
I’ve discovered from previous expertise that Happy Valley is a fairly technical check and also you actually must have your wits about you. Things can occur within the blink of a watch so it is essential to get a great early place.
Frustrating begin to life in Japan!
Tom and I are actually having fun with our stint in Japan. He obtained off to a flying begin however it took me a very long time to get a winner which was irritating as I’m fairly an impatient individual!
It was such a aid when it got here on Reveur at Tokyo final month and I used to be delighted so as to add to that with an thrilling pillar-to-post win on Pure Judge within the Ichikawa Stakes at Nakayama on the weekend.
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I’ve been getting loads of rides and assist from numerous trainers however it’s simply been onerous to get on the higher horses. Jockeys are booked round three weeks upfront over right here, the place we solely race on the weekend, so many of the higher rides had been spoken for after we arrived.
It’s ultra-competitive with 5 worldwide riders engaged on short-term licences however I’m hoping some greater alternatives will come my approach via December. We’re going to be racing at Nakayama now they usually have Group races each weekend, which could assist.
Life not so unhealthy in jockey jail!
In Japan the principles that jockeys should abide by are very completely different to these again residence. Every Friday afternoon the riders engaged on the weekend’s fixture should examine into remoted lodging known as ‘Jockey Jail’.
We’re not allowed telephones or entry to the web till we come out after racing on Sunday night time, which in some methods is not such a foul factor. Despite the language barrier everybody is basically pleasant and I’ve obtained used to it now.
I truly do not thoughts it as a result of it means you are in a single place so you possibly can loosen up and focus on your forthcoming rides with out worrying about travelling to the races.
Early begins however loads of down time
When I got here out to Tokyo for two months it appeared like a very long time however it’s completely flying by. I’m on account of return residence on Boxing Day however am constructing some robust relationships with trainers and actually hope I can come again and have one other go subsequent yr.
Tom and I are having fun with the routine and I have to admit it is fairly a novelty solely to be racing on the weekends. Mondays and Tuesdays are our days off so we have been spending our time exploring and seeing the sights.
Doyle on board The City's Phantom (pink cap) at Yarmouth
It’s nice to have these two days to re-charge because the weekends are fairly tiring however we’re up early on Wednesdays to experience work. We’re off the bed by 4.15am to journey to the coaching observe, which is about an hour and a half away. We normally experience 4 horses, ending at about 11.30, so it is a lengthy morning.
In the afternoon we go the gymnasium to coach earlier than repeating the routine on Thursdays. Then on Fridays we go swimming and spend a while going via our weekend rides on-line earlier than checking into Jockey Jail – to concentrate on hopefully using extra winners!