Dec 9 LONGINES International Jockeys’ Championship
Background: Zac Purton sealed a fourth Hong Kong jockeys’ championship last season, outgunning his great championship rival Joao Moreira 147 – 138, notching a hat-trick of titles for the Australian. The season prior, Purton grabbed his third championship with 168 wins and a record-setting stakes money of almost HK$235 million. Having ended Douglas Whyte's 13-season dominance with his first Hong Kong jockeys' championship in 2013/14 (112 wins), in 2017/18 he halted Joao Moreira’s own title streak at three. His second championship was a remarkable effort as he chased down Moreira to take the lead for the first time that term on June 10, 2018. Five weeks later, at season’s end, he had outpointed Moreira 136-134 with a win strike rate of 21% to the Brazilian’s 20%. Purton started his career in Brisbane and was an apprentice sensation, winning the premiership there in 2003. He then moved on to Sydney where he was twice second in the premiership. Purton moved to Hong Kong in September 2007. His many major wins include the King's Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot in 2012, a Caulfield Cup success aboard Admire Rakti in 2014 and a record-matching eight victories at the LONGINES HKIR including in each of the four features. He is the regular partner of Hong Kong’s highest earning horse, Beauty Generation.
Honours: Hong Kong Champion Jockey (2013/14, 2017/18, 2018/19, 2019/20); Brisbane Champion Jockey (2003 - when still an apprentice); LONGINES IJC (2017); World Super Jockeys Series (Japan) winner (2012).
IJC record: 2019 - 9th; 2018 - 10th (DH); 2017 - WON; 2016 - 7th; 2014 - 6th; 2013 - 2nd; 2012 - 2nd.
Background: Norwegian-born Buick was joint champion apprentice in Britain in 2008 and rode his first G1 win on Lahaleeb in the E P Taylor Stakes the following year. He was appointed stable jockey to John Gosden in 2010 and the partnership started with a bang as he rode Dar Re Mi to win the G1 Dubai Sheema Classic. In late 2014, he began his association with Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation, primarily riding for trainer Charlie Appleby. This partnership quickly proved fruitful as he took the G1 Dubai World Cup the following March on Prince Bishop. His list of 63 G1 wins includes four on star sprinter Dream Ahead, as well as the Dubai World Cup (2015 Prince Bishop), and nine in 2018 featuring the QEII Cup on Pakistan Star, the Derby at Epsom aboard Masar and Japan’s Mile Championship on Stelvio. His recent exploits at the top-level include three G1s aboard Godolphin’s Ghaiyyath, who claimed the Coronation Cup, Eclipse Stakes and Juddmonte International Stakes. While his most recent at G1 level came aboard Wonderful Tonight in the British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes on Champions Day at Ascot.
IJC record: 2012 - 9th; 2009 - 8th.
Background: Ryan Moore is a two-time winner of the LONGINES IJC. He is the outstanding international rider of recent years and was the first recipient of the LONGINES World’s Best Jockey Award as a result of 15 G1 wins in 2014. He won that accolade again in 2016. Moore hails from a racing family. His first win came for his trainer father, Gary Moore, on Mersey Beat over hurdles at Towcester in May 2000. His first professional Flat win came on Marwell’s Kiss at Lingfield in January 2002. He notched a first G1 aboard Notnowcato in the 2006 Juddmonte International Stakes at York and has won 11 English Classics. Moore bagged 11 G1 wins in 2019, and this year’s six G1s have taken his overall tally to 138 at the elite level in 11 different countries. Moore has won some of the world’s foremost races including the LONGINES Hong Kong Cup (2016 Maurice), LONGINES Hong Kong Mile (2015 Maurice), LONGINES Hong Kong Vase (2015 & 2017 Highland Reel), Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, English Derby, Japan Cup, Breeders’ Cup Turf and Melbourne Cup.
Honours: British Champion Jockey (2006, 2008, 2009); British Champion Apprentice (2003); LONGINES IJC winner (2009 [shared] & 2010); LONGINES World’s Best Jockey Award winner (2014 & 2016).
IJC record: 2019 - 2nd; 2018 - 5th; 2017 - 6th; 2016 - 2nd; 2015 - 2nd; 2014 - 4th; 2013 - 5th; 2012 - 3rd; 2011 - 6th (DH); 2010 - WON; 2009 - WON (DH); 2007 - 10th (DH); 2006 - 6th.
Background: Hollie Doyle made a winning debut as a jockey, scoring at Salisbury in 2013 aboard The Mongoose. After completing high school, she joined the yard of David Evans in Wales, and during winter, would spend six weeks riding out at Santa Anita, California. In 2014, Doyle began her apprenticeship at the Wiltshire yard of four-time British champion trainer, Richard Hannon Sr., and she rode out her claim in November, 2017. In 2020, Doyle set a new record for the number of winners ridden in a single British Flat racing season by a female jockey with 116 victories, surpassing the previous figure (106) set by Josephine Gordon in 2017. She currently has 129 wins through 2020 (as at 18 November), a record for a female jockey during a calendar year. Among her record-breaking haul, was a single-day record for a female jockey with five wins at Windsor Racecourse on 29 August. Doyle also secured her first Group race victory in the G2 Princess of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket aboard Dame Malliot, and her first Royal Ascot success came with 33/1 chance Scarlet Dragon in the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes. Her biggest success to date also came at Ascot in the G1 British Champions Sprint Stakes atop Glen Shiel, who gave her a British Champions Day double after Trueshan had powered clear of his rivals in the G2 British Champions Long Distance Cup. She is the retained rider of Classic-winning owner and breeder Imad Al Sagar.
Honours: First female jockey to ride five winners in one day (Windsor Racecourse, 29 August, 2020); Single season record for most winners ridden by a female jockey (116).
IJC record: Debut
Background: Tom Marquand doesn’t come from a racing background but at the age of 12 the decision to get riding lessons led him to pony racing, the British Racing School, and at the age of 15, Arab racing. Next came the biggest step of his career, which saw him undertake an apprenticeship with Richard Hannon Sr. at his Wiltshire yard. The following year he was British Flat racing champion apprentice with 54 wins, and in 2017, he landed a first Group race victory, securing the G3 Dick Poole Fillies’ Stakes at Salisbury with Anna Nerium. In 2018 Marquand rode over 100 winners for the first time, and at the end of that year he spent six weeks in Australia riding for trainer John O’Shea. Marquand added two more G3 successes on his return to Europe, including one in France at Saint-Cloud, and another trip to Australia in 2020 produced a G1 double aboard the William Haggas-trained Addeybb in the Ranvet Stakes at Rosehill Gardens and the Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Randwick. His success Down Under garnered him the nickname ‘Aussie Tom’ from Australians. Marquand landed a first British G1 and Classic victory aboard Galileo Chrome in the St Leger Stakes at Doncaster, before reuniting with Addeybb to claim the Champion Stakes at Ascot on British Champions Day.
Honours: British Flat racing champion apprentice (2015).
IJC record: Debut
Background: Mickael Barzalona was born in Avignon, France, a grandson of Corsican trainer Christian Barzalona and nephew of former Flat and Jumps jockey Armand Barzalona. He began his career with France’s standout trainer, Andre Fabre, with whom he is still associated, and is Godolphin’s number one rider in France. A precocious sensation, he enjoyed a stunning Dubai Carnival in 2011, at age 19, winning major races for the Godolphin operation, and that momentum took him to a famous English Derby win in June of that year aboard Pour Moi for Fabre and Coolmore. He then headed to Hong Kong for a short stint in 2011/12, notching one winner from 42 rides. Barzalona won the 2012 G1 Dubai World Cup aboard Monterosso and the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Turf on Talismanic. The latest of his 14 G1 wins came on Sealiway in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere in October.
IJC record: 2018 - 8th (DH); 2016 - 10th.
Background: Pierre-Charles Boudot won his second French champion jockey title - and first outright - in 2016 with a then European record of 300 wins that season. His father, the late Marc Boudot, was a trainer in central France. He attended the jockeys’ school at Govieux before joining the inimitable Andre Fabre as an apprentice. He notched his first win in April 2009 and his maiden G1 triumph was atop Gallante in the 2014 Grand Prix de Paris. He won the 2014 G1 Prix Rothschild and the following year’s G1 Prix Jacques le Marois and G1 Sun Chariot Stakes on Esoterique. Boudot rode in Japan for two months at the end of 2014, based at Ritto with trainer Yasutoshi Ikee. He achieved a career peak in 2019 when winning the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe on Waldgeist, one of seven G1 wins during the year. He has won 11 G1s through 2020, including two at the Breeders’ Cup, the Filly & Mare Turf on Audarya, as well as the Breeders’ Cup Mile aboard Order Of Australia.
Honours: France’s champion jockey (2015 [tied with Christophe Soumillon] & 2016).
IJC record: 2019 – 11th (DH); 2017 - 3rd.
Background: Known as “Magic Man”, Joao Moreira won the LONGINES IJC at his second attempt in 2012. The Brazilian sensation notched more than 1000 wins in South America before moving to Asia. He relocated to Singapore in 2009, and, after finishing third in the premiership in that first season, he proceeded to dominate the Singapore circuit for four years. He moved to Hong Kong in October 2013 and was champion jockey for three straight seasons, with record-breaking win totals (145, 168 and 170). Moreira departed for Japan at the end of the 2017/18 season but returned to Hong Kong in December 2018 to ride as stable jockey to John Size, ending that term with 90 wins. In the 2019/20 season he amassed 138 wins, five at G1 level including two aboard that season’s Champion Sprinter, Beat The Clock, to accrue total prize money of HK$206 million. He is currently leading this season’s premiership.
Honours: LONGINES IJC winner (2012); Hong Kong Champion Jockey (2014/15, 2015/16, 2016/17); Singapore Champion Jockey (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013); two-time Brazilian Eclipse Award winner (2006/07, 2007/08); fastest 100 in a Hong Kong season (22 February, 2017); Hong Kong record for most wins in a season (170 in 2016/17); most wins in a Hong Kong race day (eight: 5 March, 2017); Singapore record for most wins in a season (206 in 2012); eight wins from eight rides at Kranji (6 September, 2013); eight wins in a day at Cidade Jardim (March 2006). World All-Star Series (Japan) winner (2015).
IJC record: 2019 - 6th (DH); 2017 - 9th (DH); 2016 - 8th (DH); 2015 - 6th; 2014 - 2nd; 2012 - WON; 2010 - 9th (DH).
Background: Mauritian rider Karis Teetan was well ensconced in the top 10 of the South African Jockeys' Championship when he left for Hong Kong in August 2013. He entered the South African Jockey Academy at the age of 14 and went on to be crowned South African Champion Apprentice in 2008. He graduated in 2009 with 147 wins to his credit. Teetan passed the 100-win mark in every season as a senior jockey in South Africa. His first top level win was in his native Mauritius on 24 November, 2008, aboard Halo Hunter. Teetan represented South Africa in the 2012 International Jockeys' Invitational in Seoul, Korea and in the 2008 Macau Apprentice Jockeys Invitation Races. He notched an impressive 50 wins in his first Hong Kong season and has continued to build on that good start. He finished third in the 2017/18 premiership race with 52 wins, which included a trio of Group 3 triumphs. He topped that in 2018/19 with 84 wins as he secured his first Hong Kong G1 win aboard Mr Stunning in the Hong Kong Sprint and again went better in 2019/20 with a personal best of 93 wins, cementing third place in the premiership race. He reunited with Mr Stunning in the 2020 Chairman’s Sprint Prize, securing the Mauritian his second Hong Kong G1.
Honours: South African Champion Apprentice (2008); LONGINES IJC winner (2019)
IJC record: 2019 - WON; 2018 – 7th; 2017 - 9th (DH).
Background: HKJC Apprentice Jockeys' School graduate Vincent Ho racked up 44 wins as a young rider in New Zealand under the tutelage of leading trainer Lance O'Sullivan. He made a good start to his Hong Kong career with 10 victories in his first season in 2009/10, including a trio of wins he achieved on only his fourth race day in Hong Kong. He sealed the 2010/11 Champion Apprentice title with 39 wins. Ho reached the graduation benchmark on 1 October, 2012 by claiming his 70th win in Hong Kong on board Castle Hero. He notched 33 wins in 2014/15 to be the season's leading homegrown rider. Ho enjoyed his best season to date in 2019/20 with not only a career-high 67 wins but a renewed partnership with the brilliant Golden Sixty saw the pair sweep the Four-Year-Old Classic Series, while also unbeaten in seven runs that term, which culminated in a thrilling Hong Kong Derby victory. Ho followed those triumphs with a career-first G1, saluting with Southern Legend in 2020 Champions Mile, outlasting Beauty Generation by a short-head. Among his 67-seasonal wins, Ho took four other Pattern Races, two at G2 level and two at G3 level as well as a second consecutive Tony Cruz Award as the season’s leading homegrown rider. Ho rode a short stint in Europe during the off-season in 2018 and notched a first UK win at the first attempt, partnering the Mark Johnston-trained X Rated to success at Haydock on 9 August. He returned to Britain during the 2019 off-season and competed at the Shergar Cup at Ascot where he won the Shergar Cup Mile aboard the Marcus Tregoning trained-Power Of Darkness, helping the Rest of the World team secure the Shergar Cup.
Honours: Hong Kong Champion Apprentice (2010/11); Best Freelance Jockey Award (2014/15); Tony Cruz Award (2018/19 & 2019/20).
IJC record: 2019 – 3rd; 2018 – 3rd;2014 – 5th
Background: Alexis Badel hails from a racing tradition, his mother being trainer Myriam Bollack-Badel and his father, former jockey Alain Badel. He was France's Champion Apprentice in 2007 and broke into the top 10 in the premiership in just his second year riding with 60 winners. Badel's first Group race win came aboard Norse King in the October, 2013 Prix du Conseil de Paris. He was appointed as the second retained rider for The Aga Khan behind Christophe Soumillon at the beginning of the 2015 racing season and went on to record his most successful season to date with 104 wins. That saw him obtain seventh position in the French Championship. Badel debuted at Sha Tin on 11 December, 2016 and he ended his maiden two-month stint in Hong Kong with seven wins. He returned in the 2017/18 season, landing 14 wins. Following his second campaign in Hong Kong, Badel returned for a third short-term stint and landed 26 wins in under four months - his best haul to date. Badel currently rides on a full-season licence for the 2020/21 season. He secured a first G1 win aboard Nonza in the August, 2018 Prix Jean Romanet at Deauville.
Honours: France’s Champion Apprentice (2007)
IJC record: Debut
Background: Irishman Neil Callan finished runner-up in the UK jockeys' championship in 2005 (151 wins) and 2007 (170 wins). After a fruitless start as an apprentice in Ireland with Kevin Prendergast he moved to Britain and forged successful partnerships with trainers Karl Burke, Kevin Ryan and Michael Jarvis. He first rode in Hong Kong on a short contract in the 2010/11 season and has since established a reputation as a tough competitor. His first full Hong Kong season, 2014/15, yielded 47 wins and fifth place in the jockeys' premiership and he equalled that tally when finishing third in 2016/17. Callan has 266 Hong Kong wins (as at 25 November 2020) and among his haul are three G1s: the QEII Cup (2015) and Standard Chartered Champions & Chater Cup (2014 and 2016), all aboard the brilliant Blazing Speed.
Honours: UK Champion Apprentice (1999)
IJC record: 2008 – 10th (DH)