Ben Coen, Mike Sheehy Bolster New South Wales' Jockey Ranks

Ben Coen (right)Scoopdyga-Desbriel Valentin

Two of Ireland's leading jockeys–Ben Coen and Mike Sheehy–will be plying their trade in New South Wales, Australia for the next few months. Coen, who is the number one jockey for conditioner Johnny Murtagh, and last year won the G1 Irish St Leger aboard Sonnyboyliston (Ire) (Power {GB}), will spend his time in Sydney with the Chris Waller stable.

“This opportunity gives me the chance to experience another style of racing,” he said. “I've never ridden trackwork with times as well, so that's an experience and something you can obviously take across to help you when you're race riding. Racing in Australia is very tactical so having some experience down here will give me a few more tools in my toolbox. You can never learn enough.”

Mike Sheehy's apprenticeship with Joseph O'Brien ended earlier this year with 104 wins and he will be based at Warwick Farm with the Ciaron Maher and David Eustace stables.

“I'm only young and I always wanted to spend a winter away from Ireland to help with my learning,” Sheehy said. “[Joseph O'Brien] advised me to come down to Australia. There have been a few riders from Ireland and England that have come to Australia, been successful and then gone back home more polished riders. Everyone tells me riding in Australia will sharpen me up as a jockey.”

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