Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 29 July 2014

O'Brien record ends long wait

Joseph O'Brien broke a 20-year old record at Navan thanks to a treble to bring up his 117th winner of the season and consign the previous best set by Mick Kinane to the history books.

O'Brien, champion jockey last season with 87 winners, equalled the previous record of 115 which Kinane set in 1993, the year O'Brien was born, on his father Aidan's Sardinia in the October Maiden.

Just some 30 minutes later the record fell when O'Brien senior's Marvellous swooped late to win the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden.

Later on the card O'Brien teamed up with Denis Cullen to win on Dysios (13-2 favourite) in the first division of the Meath Handicap.

Speaking afterwards the youngster (20), who struggles to ride below 9st, reflected: "I'm not sure if it's more difficult for me than the other lads trying to do weight, but I have been very lucky to have some really nice horses to ride.

"The horses have been running very well all year and I've had plenty of support from the owners in Ballydoyle as well as from all the other trainers who have supported me.

"At the start of the season I was hoping to ride 100 winners and I am delighted to break the record."

His father said: "I'm delighted for Joseph. Everyone knows it's not easy for him to do 9st and it's a great achievement to break the record. Mick rode an incredible amount of Group Ones for us and what can you say about Mick – he has done it all.

"I think he (Joseph) might have more of his riding ability from his dam's side than sire!"

Kinane was full of praise for O'Brien.

He said: "I'm delighted for Joseph, he's one of a very good crop of young riders in Ireland."

Meanwhile, Martin Dwyer was relieved to put what he described as an "awful" period behind him after a disciplinary panel at the British Horseracing Authority decided not to reciprocate the 56-day ban he received in India.

It was alleged the Derby-winning jockey did not ride Ice Age on her merits at Mahalaxmi back in February, and at one stage the suspension was increased to eight months on appeal by the Royal Western India Turf Club.

It was subsequently returned to 56 days on a second appeal and Dwyer, who has always professed his innocence, was down to his final option in asking the BHA not to impose the ban in Britain.

Dwyer said: "I'm pleased and relieved it's all over."

* LINGFIELD will stage a £1million all-weather meeting on Good Friday next year.

The BHA has rubber-stamped racing on the blank date, with Lingfield securing the fixture.

* A FULL sister to 2012 Oaks winner Was made a world record fee of £5.25million for a yearling filly sold at auction at Tattersalls Sales in Newmarket yesterday.

The daughter of Galileo by Alluring Park was sold by Lodge Park Stud to Mandore International on behalf of Sheikh Joaan's Al Shaqab Racing.

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