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With the flat season coming to a close and Wetherby and Cheltenham just around the corner it seems like a good time to look at conditional jockeys who it may pay to follow this winter.
Luca Morgan’s 46 winners was enough to see him lift the Conditional Jockey’s Title in 2023 and it will be interesting to see who joins Morgan and the likes of Jamie Moore, Paddy Brennan, Brian Hughes, Aidan Coleman, Sam Twiston-Davies, Sean Bowen and Harry Cobden as winners of the prestigious award.
Last year’s second would appear to be the most obvious place to start with regards conditional jockeys with Harry Kimber’s 31 winners seeing him finish a fair way back in second but that total was enough to see him finish in the top 30 overall winners wise.
Kimber has made a decent start to the 2023/24 campaign with seven winners from his 55 rides to date and while Kieran Burke has supplied him with most winners the young pilot boasts a 30% strike-rate (10/33) when teaming up with the Robert Walford stable.
Philip Armson, attached to the David Pipe stable had a decent season last year with 28 winners from his 286 rides for a 10% strike-rate however he has made a slow start to the new campaign with just three winners to date from his 53 rides with two of those coming on Toad Of Toad Hall at Fontwell.
Bradley Harris has made a fantastic start to the 2023/24 season with the youngster registering 18 winners from his 80 rides already for a 23% strike-rate.
Among those 18 winners are three in bumpers for a healthy level stakes profit, primarily when riding for Milton Harris.
Beau Morgan is another to have made a good start to the season, his 11 winners from 45 rides (24% strike-rate) are enough to see him sit in the top 25 in the current outright Jockeys Championship for the season.
While unlikley to be able to hold that position it’s a promising start for a rider who has had just 100 rides over jumps to date.
In contrast Liam Harrison is nearing 600 rides all told and while he won’t be a conditional for too much longer his 33% strike-rate (5/15) over fences this season is respectable with those wins including a 12/1 success for Robert Llwellyn at Market Rasen recently.
Tristan Durrell is attached to the Dan Skelton stable and he is sure to get plenty of opportuniteis this campaign. The young rider currently sits on four winners for the campaign but that should increase markedly through the winter. Brother Harry Skelton who won the 2020/21 Jump Jockeys’ Championship and is stable jockey to his brother Dan’s powerful yard has joined StarSports as a Brand Ambassador. Harry will update Star Sports customers with Offers on his rides and the yard’s runners via a blog as well as providing regular video content and exposure on social media.
Lilly Pinchin caught many an eye when riding for Fergal O’Brien as an amateur with her partnership with his hunter chaser Creevytennant particularly successful and she has transferred her success to the professional ranks in recent years.
Pinchin has been riding primarily for the Charlie Longsdon and Graham McPherson stables but her near 55% strike-rate (6/11) when partnering the Tom Symonds horses is perhaps the most noteworthy of her trainer link-ups.
Isabel Williams has done particularly well when teaming up with father Evan in recent seasons and she sits on five winners for the season with two each over hurdles and fences and one coming in a bumper. She
Alice Stevens has done well in point-to-point races and hunter chases in recent years and it’s been no surprise to see her head down the conditional route. Stevens has ridden just the three winners so far this term but that is sure to increase in due course with Gordon Elliott among the trainers to have used her so far this season.
Emma Smith-Chaston has done well in the North in recent seasons, thanks in large part to her 16% strike-rate (38/235) when riding for her boss Micky Hammond and she looks likely to mount a bold bid assuming she can stay injury free for the 2023/24 campaign.
It’s of note that the Lancastrian also boasts an impressive 33% strike-rate (4/12) with seven total places when riding for Jo Foster with both the Hammon and Foster link-ups providing punters with a significant level stakes profit to date.
Patrick Wadge has shown good form for the Lucinda Russell team and he has made a good start to the campaign with ten winners from his 61 rides to date this season.
The rider is able to do low weights which should prove helpful for the stable down the line and he is expected to be a force to be reckoned with, particularly in chases where he boasts a 26% strike-rate (15/57) when riding for the Russell stable.
All of Charlotte Jones’ winners have come for her boss James Moffatt and while she only had 107 rides last season she did manage 23 winners for a 21% strike-rate.
While based in the North West Toby Wynne has done particularly well for trainer Robert Llewellyn with the pair teaming up for six winners in recent years with five of those (from 11 runners) coming in hurdle races.
While the majority of Jones’ winners have come over hurdles her strike-rates of 35% (12/34) and 23% (9/39) when riding over fences and in bumpers respectively are impressive.