Ryan Moore is having to sit and suffer ‘home’ alone as he fulfils his two weeks of isolation in order to ride Aidan O’Brien’s equine superstars on Longines Irish Champions Weekend.
O’Brien likens the Ballydoyle number one jockey’s ongoing quarantine, in accordance with measures to combat the spread of coronavirus, as akin to a soccer player doing likewise before playing in a big match.
In Moore’s case, the hope is it will all be worth it when the multiple champion trainer unleashes the likes of Magical and Battleground at Leopardstown and the Curragh next weekend.
“It was always the plan that he would come over,” said O’Brien.
“I haven’t seen him actually – I’ve spoken to him on the phone.
“I see his dinner’s going off to him every day, the poor fella.”
Moore has so far had to stay put with only himself for company for four days – and must continue to do so until next Saturday.
“He gets the work videos and the work reports, and all that,” added O’Brien.
“But he’s in total, total lockdown – since Saturday night, he went in.
“It’s very strange and very different, but that’s where he is at the moment.
“That’s the way he has to be, unless there’s a rule change or anything like that.
“Obviously he has to do two weeks in the house, no riding out.
“He’s not able to move outside the house. The Turf Club (Horse Racing Ireland) have the house address and that’s it, that’s where he is.”
O’Brien acknowledges the sacrifice Moore was keen to make so that he can at last ride in Ireland for the first time this summer, at the country’s biggest meeting of the year.
“It’s difficult, because he is an athlete,” he said.
“You have to train. It’s like a soccer player being put in a house, and then expected to turn out and go play a match after sitting there for two weeks.
“It’s very difficult. But Ryan was very much prepared to do it, and wanted to do it – and we were delighted.”