Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Has the decision by De Sousa to join Goldolphin compromised his title chance?........................................

The news that Silvestre De Sousa has taken up a full time post with Goldolphim when many, including myself, thought he would be appointed stable jockey to Hamdan Al Maktoum, leaves a lot of unanswered questions.

The obvious one is who, if anybody, will now get the Hamdan job? In the past Hamdan has always gone with a policy of having a first and second jockey. Presently, Tadgh O'Shea is second behind the soon-to-retire Richard Hills.

Plenty of names have been bounded about, including Kieren's who I can assure everybody has not been approached and is probably too old for the organisation. Personally, I have no idea whom to now make the market leader and could Hamdan, as some have suggested, just use the best available?

If the camp decide to follow that route where does that leave O'Shea? And could he be promoted to the head of the table? Who knows? But no doubt things will become clearer in the next few days.

Another topic which has raised its head for discussion has been whether the appointment to Goldolphin will compromise De Sousa's assault on the jockeys' championship?

Personally, I don't think so. Goldolphin will have 400 horses split between their two trainers and I'm sure Mark Johnston (a major player in the his promotion) will support De Sousa when not needed by the boys in blue. He is a major player.

Kieren is as short as 6-1 with Ladbrokes which is way too short and Kieren and I will now have to follow a different path this year. It was no secret that I was hoping to obtain more rides this year for Goldolphin and, though I've no doubt he will pick up spares, you can't be effectively a third or fourth choice.

Finally a word of praise to Paddy Power. After news broke on Sunday of Richard Hills' retirement they prioed up a market for Hamdan's new jockey, took money (not sure how much, mind) at 7-2 on De Sousa, more at 6-4 before closing the market.

For having the balls to risk being stung, the Irish firm copped the lot. It was nice to see a bookmaker actually being a bookmaker, however little the sum was.

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