Monday 22 January 2018

Jockey James Doyle hails Al Kazeem after he's put out to stud

James Doyle riding Al Kazeem
James Doyle riding Al Kazeem

Jockey James Doyle remains forever indebted to Al Kazeem after the popular seven-year-old was retired to stud for a second time on Tuesday.

Doyle developed an outstanding alliance with Roger Charlton's inmate, on whom he won six races - four of which came at Group One level.

But the threat of further injury forced owner-breeder John Deer to again call time on a marvellous career which saw Al Kazeem win over £1.5million in prize-money.

Despite having been subfertile at stud after he was retired in 2013, the son of Dubawi will next year stand at Deere's Oakgrove Stud, in Chepstow.

"He doesn't owe anybody a thing," Doyle said.

"His career was pretty remarkable, when you think about it.

"To come back from a fractured pelvis and then to come back from stud and still win races at a top level was nothing short of extraordinary.

"Cityscape put me on the map, but Al Kazeem was amazing for me in my career as I rode him in all those great Group Ones around Europe, including two Arcs.

"He's a great horse and I hope he makes a go of it back at stud."

Doyle was in the saddle when Al Kazeem twice won the Tatersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh, most recently in May, and the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown in 2013.

But it was their victory in the Prince of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot two years ago which will linger potently in the Godolphin rider's memory.

"There were so many good times, but I think Ascot was pretty nice," said Doyle.

"He was so game and honest for me and it was obviously a special day to get my first Group One winner at Royal Ascot."

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