Moore on board Magical in Sunday’s Longines Hong Kong Cup at Sha Tin and rides Mogul in Vase

By Andrew Atkinson

Ryan Moore will continue as the leading jockey for Aidan O’Brien next season after speculation about Moore’s post at the Coolmore-Ballydoyle stables – with Colin Keane mooted to take his place.

“That’s the plan – that’s what we’re hoping. Obviously it was a disaster last year. It was a mess really,” said O’Brien, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Everything is changing so much all the time – we’re just hoping we won’t be in the same situation again,” said O’Brien.

Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions Moore was only able to ride in Ireland over Irish Champions Weekend in September, riding Japan in the Irish Champion Stakes, in a race won by stable companion Magical.

Moore will be on board Magical in Sunday’s Longines Hong Kong Cup at Sha Tin and on Mogul in the Vase on the final big international meeting of 2020.

O’Brien has booked French jockey Pierre-Charles Boudot on Breeders Cup 73-1 winner Order of Australia in the Mile, after victory in Keeneland in November.

“Ryan has never sat him, he knew nothing about him, he hasn’t been here all year, and there was no point in riding him in the race to get to know him when there was another jockey there who knew him and has ridden him,” said O’Brien.

O’Brien heads to Hong Kong having won 14 Group-Grade 1 races during the 2020 Flat racing season that included a record eighth Epsom Derby with Serpentine in July.

O’Brien hit the headline news in October in a contaminated feed issue leading to the withdrawal of a plethora of runners from Longchamp’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe meeting, including four horses entered in the Arc de Triomphe.

“It’s been a very strange year and you’d never be surprised by anything this year. It is what it is.

“Lots of people faced worse hardships than any of us did. It’s just the year it was. We played it as best we could and look forward to next year,” said O’Brien.

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