Martin Harley has enjoyed a fine start to 2018, the Trentagh man saddling nine winners through January.
Among Harley’s lot was a 25/1 winner in the form of Reflektor for Tom Dascombe at Lingfield and the year could hardly have began better for the Donegal jockey.
Harley is one of Donegal’s busiest and most successful sportspeople, but just where he is in his game is perhaps undervalued to the wider audience.
The sport itself is riddled with dangers. Harley knows that all too well having suffered some bad falls, including one that broke his neck in 2014, in his time
“It’s one of the only sports where the ambulance follows you at 40 miles per hour,” he says.
“It’s a good game and I’m doing something I love.”
Harley enjoyed his latest winner aboard Fiery Breath on Saturday at Lingfield and is back in the mix tonight when he goes at Kempton Park on the 4/1 Thaqaffa and the 11/2 Ruler Of The Nile.
Among his nine wins so far were two wins on Amy Murphy’s Thaqaffa.
Harley says: “I wouldn’t have expected that when January come. It’s been good so far. I’m not flat out racing, just keeping the fitness ticking over and waiting for the grass to come around the corner.
Harley gave up a job as stable jockey to Marco Botti and is now a freelance jockey.
He says: “When the winners are coming, you’re riding for the right trainers and the right silks are on your back you’re always willing to get up for work in the morning.
“You can’t let the guard down for even two minutes because someone will be there to fill the gap.”
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