Joao Moreira riding nine horses at a single meeting for John Size might look like “Dream Team 2.0” but the jockey says his big day out for the champion stable is simply a case of taking the best possible rides.
For the best part of 10 seasons, Size and 13-time champion jockey Douglas Whyte earned the “Dream Team” tag as the pair dominated and the South African getting first choice of rides out of the powerful stable.
The pair’s dominance even led to the so-called “Size-Whyte” rule, which limited the amount of rides a jockey could have for a trainer over the course of a season.
Moreira rides for Size regularly – but the lightweight tends to share his talent more widely than Whyte did during his reign – and says the vast majority of Sunday’s bookings are simply a case of “the right horses at the right time”.
“Nobody would say anything if I didn’t have a ride on a particular day for John, which happens, I make my decision each meeting based on which horses have the best chance of winning,” Moreira, who has ridden just one winner for Size from 24 rides this season, said. “So the reason I am riding so many of John’s horses today is that so many have great chances.”
Moreira, who has been booked for Size-trained pair Amazing Kids and Sun Jewellery in upcoming feature races, not only takes the ride on Group Three Sa Sa Ladies’ Purse fancy Eastern Express but also a talented young group of horses.
Love Shock, Premiere, Unicron Jewellery, Volitation, My Darling and Arizona Blizzard all look to have some ratings points in hand and could deliver a massive day for the Size-Moreira partnership.
The Brazilian jockey picked out My Darling as a standout as the 2017 BMW Hong Kong Derby hopeful resumes in a Class Two over 1,400m.
My Darling was first reserve two weeks ago in the race where Mr Bogart upset boom horse Pakistan Star, but this time it is Pakistan Star who is a standby starter.
“I’m glad Pakistan Star isn’t there, but maybe he was lucky we weren’t there last time,” Moreira said, with My Darling getting the benefit of barrier one with the rail in the “C + 3” position.
While Moreira’s strike rate for Size this season has been poor, his other two rides are for Caspar Fownes, with whom he has struck up a formidable combination this term.
Moreira, who rides Fantasticlife and Robust Momentum for Fownes, has ridden a remarkable seven winners from nine rides for the stable this season.