OMAGH jockey, Simon Torrens showcased his talents on the biggest stage of Irish Jump racing when recording a double at the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown on Saturday.
‘A Wave Of The Sea’ supplied the first leg of the brace in the £100,000 handicap chase, with the local rider having his first ever mount for winning trainer, Joseph O’Brien. The winner was held up until leading at the last and driven out in the closing stages to hold the late challenge of ‘Top Moon’ – the first and second both owned by JP McManus, who also provided the fourth placed ‘Entoucas’.
The trio are all trained by O’Brien, who said: “Simon is a good rider. He’s been riding a bit of work for us and rides a bit of work for JP. He gave him a fantastic ride. He could easily go to Cheltenham Festival.”
Torrens said: “It’s great just to be here. It’s a thrill to be riding on these big days – it’s a thing of dreams. He was a very good horse over hurdles and a Grade 1 winner and can progress over fences.”
The local rider again donned the JP colours aboard the Pat Fahy trained, ‘Drop The Anchor’ in the £125,000 handicap hurdle with success. The 24-year-old jockey gave the winner an exceptional ride, arriving late on the outside to claim the spoils, having had eight horses in front of him prior to the final flight.
Torrens said: “I was confident going to the last as I won on him at Listowel and knew he would keep going.”
Fahy said: “I arrived here not long before Simon won earlier and I said ‘well that’s probably me gone now because he’ll never win the two of them’. He’s some rider and it’s great to see another potential champ coming along.”
The young rider continued his exceptional run of success when moving on to Fairyhouse on Monday and winning the handicap chase aboard the Philip Rothwell trained, ‘Weilnacts’ despite the horse still a maiden having travelled well to lead before the last and going clear yet again in the silks of Champion owner, JP McManus.