Murphy and Deirdre Reunited in Newmarket Gallop

Deirdre and Oisin Murphy after galloping in Newmarket | Emma Berry


NEWMARKET, UK—Champion jockey Oisin Murphy was in Newmarket early on Wednesday to ride work on Japanese globetrotter Deirdre (Jpn) (Harbinger {GB}) ahead of the G1 Coral-Eclipse S. a week on Sunday.

The 6-year-old mare has been based in Britain for more than a year, during which time she has raced in Ireland, Hong Kong and Saudi Arabia. She also made two appearances on British racecourses last year at Royal Ascot and Glorious Goodwood, where she became the first Japanese-bred runner to win a Group 1 race in Britain when landing the Qatar Nassau S.

Trained by Mitsuru Hashida, Deirdre has been in the constant care of her daily rider Yuta Komiyama, who was watching from the ground on Wednesday as Murphy arrived at the Al Bahathri in the company of two horses from Jane Chapple-Hyam's stable, which is adjacent to Deirdre's home from home in Abington Place.

Deirdre completed her strong work over the nine-furlong polytrack gallop alone and afterwards Murphy declared himself delighted with the mare, who was last seen in action at the Saudi Cup meeting, where she as beaten a head into second in the Naghi Motors Cup.

He said, “She felt great and strong, and she blew for only a few minutes afterwards. I'm very happy with her.”

Deirdre is likely to face Enable (GB) (Nathaniel {Ire}) in her first run of the British season at Sandown, as well as recent impressive Coronation Cup winner Ghaiyyath (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}).

Murphy added, “I think the race will be run at a true pace. Sandown has only one turn for the Eclipse, you jump out and it's right-handed, which is no problem for Deirdre, and there's an uphill finish. It's quite stiff and the last furlong is never that fast, and I think that is when Deirdre will really be staying on. It's going to be one of the highest-rated races in the world but I think she can run very well. I hope the sun keeps shining. The clerk of the course and the groundsmen are very good at Sandown and I hope it will be fast ground, that's what Deirdre loves.”

Hashida's daughter Seiko is representing her father in Britain at present and she said as Deirdre was washed down after exercise that plans for the mare will be very much on a race-by-race basis but she has the option to return to Goodwood for the Nassau.

Murphy's busy morning was completed by a journey to Kempton to ride 2000 Guineas winner Kameko (Kitten's Joy) in a racecourse gallop ahead of his intended run in the Derby on July 4.

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