Oisin Murphy targets Hickstead Speed Derby

Oisin Murphy and Paul Carberry could face off in the showjumping arena with both hoping to take part in the British Speed Derby at Hickstead next month.

Three-times British champion Flat jockey Murphy is currently serving a 14-month suspension after admitting to contravening Covid protocols, misleading British Horseracing Authority officials and prejudicial conduct, as well as two alcohol breaches, at a hearing back in February.

Murphy, who competed in showjumping in his native Ireland in his youth, has now turned his sights to the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting, where he will seek to build on his second place in last year’s British 1.10m Amateur Championship.

The Speed Derby, which is the feature class on the Saturday of the fixture which runs June 23-26, includes many of Hickstead’s iconic fences, including the Devil’s Dyke and the Irish Bank, with riders negotiating the course in the quickest possible time.

Paul Carberry could also ride at Hickstead
Paul Carberry could also ride at Hickstead (Brian Lawless/PA)

Recently-retired Grand National and Gold Cup-winning rider Robbie Power won the class in 2013 and Murphy, who has had help from Richard Howley and Morgan Kent in his Hickstead preparations, would love to join him on the roll of honour.

He said: “He’s (Power) a very talented rider and I’m a very amateur showjumper! But I love jumping and I’ll try my best.”

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In contrast, Grand National-winner Carberry has been competing in showjumping classes since his retirement from the track in 2016 and he will also be trying to make the Speed Derby line up, which will be decided by the qualifier, which takes place on the Thursday morning of the show.

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