Oisin Murphy

Last updated

Oisin Murphy
DSC 3413RoaringLion.jpg
Oisin Murphy on Roaring Lion at the 2018 Breeders' Cup
Occupation Jockey
Born (1995-09-06) 6 September 1995 (age 25)
Cork, Republic of Ireland
Height5 ft 5 in (165 cm)
Weight8 st (112 lb; 51 kg)
Racing awards
British flat racing Champion Apprentice (2014)
British flat racing Champion Jockey (2019, 2020)
2000 Guineas
2020
Owner Qatar Racing Limited.svg Owner Mr Derrick Smith.svg Owner Godolphin.svg
KamekoWichitaPinatubo

Oisin Murphy (born 6 September 1995) is an Irish horse racing jockey based in the United Kingdom. In October 2019, he became the British Champion Jockey.

Murphy grew up in Killarney, County Kerry He had ponies as a child and his ambition was originally to be a show-jumper. When he was fourteen the family moved to Buttevant, County Cork, so that Murphy could ride under the tutelage of his uncle Jim Culloty, three-time Cheltenham Gold Cup winner and Grand National winner. Having sat on a racehorse for the first time at the age of fourteen, Murphy abandoned his show-jumping ambitions and embarked on the pony-racing circuit. [1] When he was fifteen he spent the summer at Tommy Stack's yard in County Tipperary and the following summer worked at Ballydoyle. In October 2012, at the age of seventeen, he moved to England and joined Andrew Balding's yard at Kingsclere in Berkshire. [1]

He made an instant impact in his first year as a professional jockey in 2013, riding a four-timer at Scottish Racing’s Ayr Gold Cup day in September, [2] including the Ayr Gold Cup itself on Highland Colori, before going on to ride a winter in Australia, mainly for Danny O'Brien and gaining a total of 13 winners. [3] In an interview in 2019, Murphy recalled his early days in racing and spoke of his admiration for older jockeys such as Kieren Fallon as well as contemporaries like Silvestre De Sousa and Jim Crowley, with his idol being Frankie Dettori after whom he named his dog and whom he credits as being the best jockey he has raced against. Murphy conceded that he was "probably a little cheeky" in the past and said that he took a few punches from older jockeys in the weighing room. He credited Dettori with having been supportive as his career as a young jockey progressed. [4]

He gained his first Group success when partnering Hot Streak to victory in the Group 2 Temple Stakes at Haydock in May 2014 and went on to be crowned British Flat Racing Champion Apprentice later that year. A second Group 2 came in the German 2,000 Guineas on Karpino in May 2015, followed by his biggest prize up until that point - the Ebor Handicap on Litigant in August. [5]

In 2016, he became number one jockey to Qatar Racing [6] and won 10 Group races on 10 different horses, including Lightning Spear (Celebration Mile) and Simple Verse (Park Hill Stakes). [5]

He gained his first Group 1 victory at the 2017 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe meeting aboard the Martyn Meade-trained Aclaim in the Prix de la Foret. [7] He has since gone on to ride eleven more winners at the highest level, notching his first two Group 1 winners in the UK in the Qatar Racing silks on Roaring Lion in the Coral-Eclipse, [8] Juddmonte International Stakes and Queen Elizabeth II Stakes and Lightning Spear in the Qatar Sussex Stakes. [9]

In June 2019, Murphy tested positive for alcohol in a breath test. Although he was under the legal drink-driving limit, this was over the limit for race riding and he had to miss a day's racing at Salisbury. The incident affected his racing, and he dropped behind in the jockeys' championship, having been 12 wins ahead. [4] However, he caught up and in October became the British Champion Jockey. He retained the title in the abbreviated 2020 season, winning 142 races, 9 ahead of his closest rival, William Buick. [10]

In November 2020 Murphy received a three-month ban for having tested positive for cocaine at a meeting in France in July. France Galop, the French governing body of racing, accepted Murphy's argument that he had never taken cocaine himself but had tested positive through environmental contamination, having had sex the day before with a woman who was an occasional cocaine user. [11]

He is an ambassador for the QIPCO British Champions Series and writes regular blogs for their website. He can speak four languages, including German. [4]

Major wins

Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Great Britain


Flag of Ireland.svg Ireland

Flag of France.svg France

Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Canada

Flag of Germany.svg Germany

Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg United Arab Emirates

Flag of Japan.svg Japan

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References

  1. 1 2 Verney, Michael (15 September 2018). "Prodigal son Murphy returns home to put cherry on career-defining season". Irish Independent.
  2. "Ayr Gold Cup: Oisin Murphy celebrates 9,260-1 four-timer". BBC Sport. 21 September 2013. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  3. "Danny O'Brien predicts Irish teen Oisin Murphy could revolutionise riding tactics". Herald Sun. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 McRae, Donald (17 October 2019). "Interview: Oisin Murphy: 'Now I'm champion jockey, I want to do it again'". The Guardian . Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  5. 1 2 "Oisin Murphy". Racing Post. Retrieved 17 October 2019.
  6. Cook, Chris (14 October 2015). "Oisin Murphy to be Qatar Racing's only retained jockey in 2016". the Guardian. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  7. "Looking back on a Group 1 year in 2017 - QIPCO British Champions Series". QIPCO British Champions Series. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  8. "Coral-Eclipse: Roaring Lion beats Saxon Warrior after stewards inquiry at Sandown". BBC Sport. 7 July 2018. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
  9. Goodwood, Greg Wood at (1 August 2018). "Glorious Goodwood: Lightning Spear and Oisin Murphy take Sussex Stakes" . Retrieved 1 January 2020 via www.theguardian.com.
  10. "Oisin Murphy retains Champion Jockey crown". BBC Sport. 6 November 2020. Retrieved 7 November 2020.
  11. "Oisin Murphy: Champion jockey banned after testing positive for cocaine". BBC Sport. 27 November 2020. Retrieved 28 November 2020.
  12. "Tattersalls Falmouth Stakes (Group 1) (Class 1) (Turf)". Racing TV.
  13. "Juddmonte International Stakes (Group 1) (1)". Racing TV.
  14. "Glorious Goodwood: Deirdre delivers Nassau Stakes gold for Japan". Racing TV. 1 August 2019.
  15. "15:15 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes". Sky Sports.
  16. "15:35 Qatar Sussex Stakes". Sky Sports.
  17. "Oisin Murphy". Equibase.