Ross Birkett wins the AJA hurdle in Les Landes, Jersey
Thanks to the generous joint sponsorship of Dandy Properties Ltd and Crespel Properties, Jersey Raceclub programmed an additional race to their usual 5 race card on Sunday 12th July at Les Landes, that being the AJA Handicap for amateur riders. Fortunately the rain that greeted racegoers soon cleared to give a sunny afternoon with the moisture taking the sting out of the ground.
Five runners went to post representing 3 nations: France (Jean Philippe Boisgontier and Melissa Boisgontier), Jersey (Frank Fairchild) and the UK (Phillip Collington and Ross Birkett).
Ross rode in a hurdle race earlier in the afternoon to familiarise himself with the racecourse – the first time he had taken part in a jumps race for 6 years!
It paid dividends in arguably the best finish of the day which saw victory for Ross aboard Neil Mulholland’s MRS BURBIDGE. Many thanks to our generous sponsors for this unique opportunity for amateurs to race in the Channel Isles and well done to winning connections.
Earlier in the afternoon Freddie Tett enjoyed a winner against professionals when partnering outsider LUCIFERS SHADOW for Mrs Gilbert.
Having been instrumental in organising the sponsorship of the AJA race but without a ride, this result felt well deserved. Apart from winning rides in France this summer, Freddie has also kept himself busy riding in Jersey and currently lies 4th in the Channel Isles Champion Jockey tables with 4 wins from 14 rides.
Jersey is a unique place for jockeys to gain race riding experience and is the only place within the British Isles where amateur jockeys can ride against professionals not only over hurdles but also on the Flat. There is also above average prize money and we hope that this year’s AJA race can be built upon with strong support from both France and the UK and become a permanent fixture within the amateur calendar.
You can watch a video of the AJA race here: