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Kirby Calls It: All Weather champion previews upcoming rides

While most of us slipped into food induced comas on Christmas Day, Coral’s All-Weather Champion columnist Adam Kirby was resisting such urgings to ready himself for six rides at Wolverhampton on Boxing Day. The 26 year-old is eager on closing the gap at the top of the Jockey’s Championship in his pursuit of a third successive title. Here he shares his thoughts on all six mounts at Dunstall Park.

Friday

1:10 Wolverhampton
I ride Rahmah for Robert Cowell in the opener. He’s a horse that stays seven furlongs quite easily but he’s got loads of speed. The only reason for dropping back to five furlongs in all honesty is to win a race. It’s lower company in a sprint. His true trip is seven furlongs but if something goes a million miles, he might be outpaced but should nail him late. I rode him over six furlongs last time out as we thought it was a winnable race but Robert and I agreed after that to drop him back to five furlongs and in lesser company. It will get his maiden mark out of the way. So I definitely think he’ll be in the shake-up.

1:45 Wolverhampton
I ride a nice horse in this race called Pretend for Mr Appleby. I rode the horse over seven furlongs Wolverhampton two runs back and I honestly thought six furlongs would be the trip for him. He’s got a lot of speed and he picks up once and then he lengthens. He’s not a bad animal in this grade and I think he goes there with every chance. He’s possibly my best chance of a winner on the card.

2:25 Wolverhampton
I’m on Urban Castle here for James Tate. I won on her last time. She got there but was a bit green. A mile and a half will be in time if not now her minimum trip, I think she stays well. I wouldn’t mind getting a lead on her as she was a little bit green making the running. It’s a step up for her, going into handicap company for the first time and it looks a competitive race but I think she’s another one that goes there with a live chance.

3:05 Wolverhampton
I ride Spirit Of Gondree for Milton Bradley. The horse has a few attitude problems pre-race but if he behaves himself and goes in the stalls, now I say If and it’s a big if, but if he gets a very fast pace, in his grade he goes there with a decent chance. But if he doesn’t get that, it will be tough. He’s a hold up performer, has to be mid division to back. But as I said if he gets a fast run race, he’ll have to pass three, four or five horses before he gets into gear. But if he does, he’ll go there with a live chance and every chance of being placed. I rode him last time at Kempton, he came there hard on the bridle, I was too handy, he hit the front and stopped dead where he’s usually the one that’s the fastest finisher. So with a bit of luck I’d like to think he’ll be in the shake-up.

4:15 Wolverhampton
I ride one for Jamie Osborne in this race, a horse called Thanksgiving Day. He won at Kempton last time out for Jamie Spencer and that wasn’t a bad performance. He jumped off, I think he was handy and went a decent gallop on him and he stays really well. I rode in that race, he quickened once and then he lengthened all the way to the line. He’s another one that goes to Wolverhampton with a fighting chance.

4:45 Wolverhampton
My last ride of the day is one for Tony Carroll. I’m on Ocean Legend. He’s a lovely horse and has been a credit to the owners. He’s got a high cruising speed. He’s a hold up performer and if he gets a gallop he’ll be in the shake-up. I won on him twice at Windsor and Brighton last June. He had his first run since then earlier this month but will have come on for that. All of Tony’s usually take a run to get them to peak form but once they’ve had that run, then they improve so hopefully he’s one of the improvers.

Best Wishes
Adam