Murphy’s joy turns to frustration after tumble
IN-FORM apprentice Michael Murphy walked away from Eagle Farm with mixed emotions, having ridden a perfect race to win on Snoopy before escaping serious injury after falling from Pinch Vista later in the day.
Murphy was stood down for the remainder of Saturday's meeting, meaning he missed the ride on his Bernborough-winning mount Bergerac, who looked most unlucky after a torrid run in the Open Handicap.
Murphy felt he was right to ride, but was overruled by stewards.
He apologised to stewards for losing his cool during the hearing.
Pinch Vista broke down in both front legs, before dislodging Murphy, who said he made a deliberate attempt to jump clear of the horse before the fall.
He returned to the jockeys' room smiling, but with a graze right cross his forehead from the impact of the fall. Murphy pleaded with stewards to allow him to keep the ride on Bergerac and took exception to being stood down.
"Sorry for blowing up," Murphy said at the conclusion of the hearing, to which chief steward Peter Chadwick said: "I was going to address that, but seeing you have apologised, we will leave it at that."
Chadwick told Murphy he had to be stood down owing to the heavy nature of the fall and the mark across his head. "We understand your disappointment, but we have to think about your welfare and that of your fellow riders," he said.
Murphy will require a clearance before riding again.
Earlier, Murphy's former boss Chris Munce praised the apprentice after guiding Snoopy to a drought-breaking win.
Snoopy jumped clearly in front, but when Upstart Pride and Primal Flight mustered speed after the first 200m, Murphy was content to pop in behind them. He then bided his time on the turn and the gap appeared between the two front runners and Snoopy was good enough to do the rest.
"He's riding really well at the moment," Munce said. "He's doing a lot of work for me and has been very effective in a few trials and it's good to see him get that reward today.
"He's putting in a lot of hard work now and probably deserves to get a few more chances than he has been. The kid rides well and horses run for him."
Murphy notched a career milestone when he won last month's Bernborough on Bergerac for Steve Tregea and though he is no longer apprenticed to Munce, he has in recent times been riding quite a bit of work for the stable.
"I'm there doing the hard yards and he's rewarded me and I'm very thankful for that," he said.
Snoopy had not won for more than two years.
"We were racing him in better class, because we were trying to get a bit of black type for (owner) Max (Whitby), but the races were probably too hard for him," Munce said. "This class of race suits better and he appreciates being kept fresh."