06 Jan 2020


It is advantage Brian Hughes after the Irish jockey rode a double at Ayr Racecourse yesterday to go one ahead of rival and current champion Richard Johnson at the top of the Jockeys’ Championship.

Hughes and Johnson both started the day on 105 winners but the latter could only ride one winner against his rival’s two.

The Johnson winner came in the first when he piloted Miss Aloud, trained by Gordon Elliott and sent off at 15-8, to a comfortable victory in the opening novices’ hurdle crossing the line five lengths in front of Aurora Thunder.

Hughes replied by steering Dunly, 13-2, to victory in the two mile handicap chase for Langholm trainer James Ewart and he then rode Castle Rushen, 15-8, to win the last race on the card, the national hunt flat race seeing off the challenge of the Johnson ridden Get Rich Die Plyin by two and three quarter lengths.

The feature race of the day, the Jumping For Joy On Racing TV Handicap Hurdle, saw a gamble landed when the Sandy Thomson trained McGowan’s Pass, sent off the 15-8 favourite and ridden by Ryan Mania, won by a massive 14 lengths from Bulls Head.

And another well backed horse Epsom Des Mottes, 7-2 favourite, won the Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle, with Danny McMenamin riding.

The Nick Alexander trained Manetti , 9-2, was given an excellent ride by Lucy Alexander to lead after the last and win the novices’ handicap chase comfortably from Martila.


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