By Simon Jackson at Lingfield Park.
Richard Hughes is the new favourite for the jockeys’ title with Paddy Power after riding a hat-trick in consecutive races on a gloriously sunny day at Lingfield Park on Wednesday.
The reigning champion jockey was cut to 4-5 (from evens) with the Irish bookmaker who has pushed current leader Ryan Moore out to 10-11 (from 8-11) after Hughes secured the third leg of a 125-1 treble on Whaleweigh Station in the British Assessment Bureau Median Auction Maiden Stakes.
Hughes scored first with Piping Dream in the 188Bet Nursery Handicap for boss Richard Hannon, leading all the way to prevail by a head in the six furlong Class 6.
The champion jockey, who is targeting his third successive jockeys’ title, used the same tactics again in the next race – the British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Fillies’ Stakes – when leading throughout on the William Haggas-trained Majestic Manner to win by length and a quarter at odds of 5-2.
Hughes completed the three-timer with a nine-length victory on the John Jenkins-trained 3-1 chance Whaleweigh Station to boost his tally for the season to 120 winners.
The victories leave Hughes 10 winners adrift of Moore who finished the day on 130 after riding a double for trainer Sir Michael Stoute. Moore landed the penultimate race at Lingfield, the 188bet Great In Play Handicap, on Alex Vino before travelling to Kempton where he won on Matravers in the Betbright Live The Moment Handicap.
The Flat Jockeys Championship is decided on winners of both flat and all-weather races from Saturday March 29, 2014 to the last race of the Doncaster turf meeting on Saturday November 8, 2014.
Read ‘Horse Talk with Simon Jackson’ at London24 for the latest horse racing news.