Oisin Murphy returns to action at Chelmsford on Thursday

Oisin Murphy returns to action at Chelmsford on Thursday

It follows a 14-month ban for alcohol and Covid breaches

Oisin Murphy returns to the saddle with one ride at Chelmsford on Thursday, following his 14-month ban for alcohol and Covid breaches.

Murphy, a three-time champion jockey, will partner the Mick Appleby-trained Jupiter Express in the second race on the card, the Winning Connections Networking Handicap.

The British Horseracing Authority announced last week that Murphy will undergo increased alcohol and drug testing after he was found to have failed two breathalyser tests.

He has not ridden since November 2021, and in February at the conclusion of a lengthy hearing, at which it was revealed he also breached Covid rules by lying about his whereabouts in September 2020, he was told he could not reapply for his licence until February 16 this year.

Jupiter Express is owned by The Horse Watchers syndicate, which is partly run by jockeys’ agent and broadcaster Chris Dixon, although Gavin Horne will continue to look after Murphy as before.

“Gavin had asked Mick if there was anything he could ride when he was available,” said Dixon.

“Tom Marquand rode Jupiter Express to be second last time, but he’s in Australia now so the jockey who rode him last time wasn’t there and this was an opportunity for him to have a ride when he came back.

“Mick was always going to support him, he’s ridden plenty of winners for him over the years – and us – so when a top jockey is available we are not afraid to use them. We’re happy to give him his first ride back.

“He’s got a decent chance. He’s been freshened up since his last run as he’d been a little busy and we’d aimed at this card ever since really.

“He’s got a decent chance, he’s in good form and hopefully there’s a little bit of mileage in his handicap mark.”

Murphy is due in Qatar at the weekend to ride Flaming Rib for Hugo Palmer with trips to Dubai, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain also pencilled in over the next few weeks.

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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