Adam Kirby, who easily landed last season’s British All-Weather Champion Jockeys’ title, served notice that he will not be giving up his crown easily when shocking the racing betting world by riding a superb 220/1 four-timer at Lingfield on December 4.
Kirby booted home some 43 winners on turf during the 2013 Flat season in Britain, but is undoubtedly a hard man to beat on the artificial surfaces as he proved at Lingfield riding his quarter of winners for four different trainers. Partnering 3/1 Paddy Power favourite Forest Edge for David Evans in the feature five furlong handicap, Kirby managed to overcome a slow start on a horse notoriously tricky at the stalls and eventually reeled in the classy pair of Addictive Dream and former Prix de l’Abbaye hero Tangerine Trees well inside the final furlong.
It was a completely different story for Kirby on Mark Johnston’s Marshgate Lane (5/2) who made all in the 10-furlong handicap half an hour later, while a quick hat trick was well and truly completed when Shaunas Magic was produced with a well judged run to score by a length in the seven furlong handicap for the in-form Dean Ivory, having been well backed from 8/1 to 6/1.
Third on David Evans’ Black Dave in his pursuit of a four-timer, Kirby only had to wait another half hour before he completed the feat thanks to the potentially well handicapped Luca Cumani inmate Mallory Heights (5/4f), who won with something to spare in the mile-and-a-half handicap and looks a horse to keep very much on the right side through the winter months.
With a smattering of good stables to ride for and a growing fan club during the winter months, it looks as though Adam Kirby will give former champion Luke Morris a fine battle in his defence of his all-weather jockeys’ title.