Oisin Murphy v William Buick: who are they riding and who has the advantage?
William Buick kept up the pressure on Oisin Murphy in theBritish Flat jockeys' championship with a double at Nottingham on Tuesday, leaving him two behind the reigning champion on 148 winners.
A pair of sprint successes on the George Boughey-trained Zebelle and Mick Appleby-trained Raasel aided Buick in his quest for a maiden title, with Murphy drawing a blank on the card.
After two days together in the Midlands, the pair both travelsouth to go head-to-head at Chelmsford on Thursday evening when Buick again has a full book of seven rides with Murphy set to partner six.
Rides on Thursday6
Form in last 14 daysWins:10Rides:69(14 per cent strike-rate)
Odds(4-6fwith Paddy Power)
Murphy startsthe night in the colours of Alcohol Free's owner Jeff Smithon Single Minded in the opening 1m2f nursery handicap (5.30).
The reigning champion does not have a ride in the second contest but is back in actionon the Jamie Osborne-trained Notions, who isbidding to build on a solid second over 6f on debut at Windsor, in the 7f novice (6.30).
Buick may be Godolphin's lead jockey but it's Murphy who lines up in the blue silks in the 7f handicap (7.00) with Discover Dubai for Saeed bin Suroor.
He then partners Golden Owl on her all-weather debut in the 7f novice for older horses (7.30) and is back in the Godolphin blue for Dubai Icon in the mile handicap (8.00) before finishing his evening on Grandstand in another mile handicap (8.30).
Rides on Wednesday7
Form in last 14 daysWins: 18Rides: 81(22 per cent strike-rate)
Odds(11-10 with Paddy Power)
Buick has ridden five winners from 19 runners for Newmarket trainer James Tate this year and will hope to increase that record on Alpine Lady in the opener (5.30).
Typical Woman bids for a maiden victory in the mile novice (6.00) after an encouraging third at Nottingham last time and Buick then rides a rare Saeed bin Suroor-trained Shadwell runner Ramadhaan in the 7f novice for two-year-olds (6.30).
Riknnah landed a hat-trick for Simon and Ed Crisford during the summer andbids to get back to winning ways in the 7f handicap (7.00), and Buick teams up with the same trainers with hot favourite Lord Lovelace in the 7f novice for older horses (7.30) and Far Hope in the mile handicap (8.00).
Buick rounds out his night on recent Lingfield winner Aiguillette (8.30), who was a close third over course and distance last month.
Spotlight comments:Chelmsford clashes
Bred to be suited by this step up to 1m2f; William Buick booked; one to consider
Neck second at Wolverhampton on sole AW start; possibilities back in this sphere
Close third when front-running at Nottingham (1m); merits plenty of respect
Murphy: no ride
Promising third at Haydock; half-sister to useful stablemate Raaeb who is 2-2 here
Encouraging debut behind a useful sort at Windsor two months ago; open to progress
In good hands and still has low mileage, so may yet resume her progress
Lightly raced 4yo whose novice form has substance; respected on handicap debut
Debut winner at Kempton then posted a very solid effort over this C&D; has strong claims
Runner-up at Chepstow when last seen; further progress is entirely possible; shortlisted
Went very close at Thirsk last time; has low mileage and may rate higher still; respected
Useful performer who has the ability to play a big role off top weight back in a handicap
Won at Lingfield (1m, AW) in August; creditable third over C&D on his only start since
Inconsistent but he had a win (1m) in September and two seconds in the summer
What the bookies say about Thursday's action
William Hill: Oisin Murphy 5-6, William Buick 5-6
Rupert Adams said: "William Buick fired in another double at Nottingham meaning the gap to Oisin Murphy is just two winners. The momentum is very much with Godolphin's retained jockey and it's now 5-6 the pair for the Flat jockeys'championship."
Coral: Oisin Murphy 8-11, William Buick evens
David Stevens said: "Although time is running out for William Buick he continues to narrow the gap on Oisin Murphy, and as a result is now evens– the shortest odds he's ever been– to win a first championship."
Paddy Power: Oisin Murphy 4-6, William Buick11-10
Paul Binfield said: "This reminds me so much of the titanic struggle between Paul Hanagan and Richard Hughes in 2010 and William has a better book of rides on paper, which raises the very real possibility that he will have drawn level or taken the lead."
Who has the advantage in the title race on Thursday?
Buick seems to really be riding with the bit between his teeth and has three favourites from his seven rides, so could easily draw level and perhaps even pass Murphy on Thursday. Murphy also has some leading chances and will be desperate to deny Buick.
David Baxter, Juvenile Judge
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