Multiple Gr1-winning Ridgemont Highlands jockey Callan Murray will continue his race riding career in Australia.
Known for his dazzling elite treble at the 2017 Champion’s Day meeting at Turffontein, riding Mustaaqeem, Rafeef, and Deo Juvente to a historic Gr1 success, Murray has had a previous stint in Australia where he rode largely for the Hayes stable, and has also spent time in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Murray made a career move three months ago from a ‘quiet’ Gauteng, where he rode for Mike de Kock, to join the powerful Brett Crawford yard at Philippi in the Cape and was quickly amongst the winners.
He has won nine Gr1 races to date and was South African Champion Apprentice in the 2015/16 season.
The 24 year old’s first race ride was on 3 November 2013 and nine days and two rides later he cracked the ice aboard the Charles Laird-trained Tennessee Strategy at Clairwood.
Set to be based in South Australia, the same location which South African trainers Dean and Gary Alexander have also decided to set up in, Murray is keen to get to Australia and kick start his local career.
“I’ve done a lot of travelling and feel like it’s time to find a place to settle in. I really enjoy the scene of Australia. I haven’t been to South Australia yet but I’m really looking forward to setting up a base for myself.”
Callan is currently 18th on the national log with his 44 winners from 462 rides giving him a 9,5% strike rate. His mounts have earned just over R3,2 million.
He will leave here at the beginning of August.
“Fortunately, with the help of quite a few people, (like) Lachlan Weekley, he’s assisted me, and Racing South Australia have sponsored me in getting over. So I’ll be able to ride in South Australia, which I’m very grateful and excited for,”he said.
We reported just last month that former dual SA Champion apprentice Luke Ferraris, already a six-time Gr1 winner at the tender age of 19, would join the Hong Kong riding ranks after being granted a six-month contract by the HKJC.
Ferraris replaces Neil Callan and is the only new addition to the Hong Kong roster for the new season which starts on 5 September.