Adam Kirby reacts to loss of John Leeper Derby ride and Adayar appointment

Adam Kirby admits he was “very upset” to lose the ride on John Leeper in the Cazoo Derby.

The jockey revealed it took him an hour to recover from the news that Frankie Dettori was taking over on Saturday.

Kirby said: “It’s swings and roundabouts and obviously I was very upset. It took me an hour to get over it.

“But I picked myself up and now I ride Adayar for Charlie Appleby in the big race.

“Racing is a big circle and what goes around comes around.

“I’m really pleased to have got another ride in the Derby and I cannot thank Charlie enough.

“He’s very loyal, so it just means something. I’m really pleased, put it that way.”

The popular Kirby will not lack for support when he tackles Flat racing’s blue riband and he has a worthy mount to go to war with.

“He’s quite a big price but he’s done nothing wrong,” added Kirby.

“He was only a length behind the Varian horse, Third Realm, at Lingfield in the Derby Trial.

“He looks like a very balanced horse, so I’m hoping for the best.”

Kirby replaces champion jockey Oisin Murphy on Adayar.

“Adam was obviously booked for John Leeper,” explained Appleby, who has supplied Kirby with 102 winners.

“We hadn’t made a commitment at that stage to what we were going to be doing with the horse. It’s nothing against Oisin whatsoever.”

Kirby also has a cracking chance of landing that elusive first Classic on Saffron Beach in today’s Cazoo Oaks.

“I’m looking forward to it,” he said about the filly who he partnered to finish second in the 1,000 Guineas behind Mother Earth.

“Let’s hope she runs a big one. Obviously, there are a lot of horses trying the trip for the first time, like she is. I’d like to think she has more than enough class to get around there.”

Kirby might not be a recognised face, but the 32-year-old is not short of experience on the Group One stage.

Top-level success has been celebrated at Royal Ascot along with two victories in the July Cup.

“I’m confident as I’ve been doing it for a while now,” he said.

“I wouldn’t be the type of fella to get worked up about it – when that happens you make mistakes.”

Riding racehorses was a natural progression for Kirby.

“My mother (a successful greyhound trainer) and father used to breed thoroughbreds, so I was into racing at a very young age,” said Kirby.

“I became a jockey because I didn’t study enough at school! I had to do something.”

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