Team debut calls for Ben Maher’s ‘new’ ride, plus more things the horse world is talking about

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  • Ben Maher’s new ride to make team debut

    Faltic HB, who joined Ben’s string in October 2021, is set to make his team debut for Britain in the Nations Cup at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida (5 March). The 12-year-old Baltic VDL son, owned by Oakingham Stud, jumped double clear to finish fifth in the World Cup qualifier at the London International Horse Show in December. The pair also took the runner-up spot in the CSI3* $140,000 IDA Development grand prix in Wellington on Sunday (20 February). They are joined on the British team by US-based Matthew Boddy on Purple Road’s 12-year-old gelding Balotelli 5, Sam Hutton with the 12-year-old H&M Kirlo Van Den Bosrand and Jessica Mendoza riding her own 10-year-old Play.

    Find out more about this exciting new star in Ben’s string

    Champion jockey ineligible to race-ride until 2023

    Oisin Murphy ban: the three-time champion jockey is not allowed to reapply for his licence until 2023

    Three-time champion Flat jockey Oisin Murphy has been banned from reapplying for his licence before 16 February 2023, after admitting five charges relating to Covid and alcohol rule breaches. The 26-year-old handed his licence in voluntarily in December 2020 to focus on rehabilitation for alcoholism. The charges, which he did not dispute, included breaching Covid restrictions, by failing to self-isolate on returning from a holiday in Mykonos in September 2020, and repeatedly lying about where he had been. He also admitted two alcohol offences, relating to Chester in May 2021 and Newmarket in October 2021, after which he realised he needed to change his ways. He spoke directly to the independent disciplinary panel during his hearing on Tuesday (22 February), speaking frankly about the pressure he places upon himself and how he used alcohol as a coping mechanism for both the highs and the lows. The panel imposed a 14-month period of ineligibility, backdated December, and a fine of £31,111, while also wishing him well on his road to recovery.

    Read what happened during the hearing

    New Lloyds Bank advert

    The black horses are back for 2022 in the latest advert for Lloyds Bank. “Drumbeat”, released on Saturday (19 February), opens with people going about their everyday lives to the sound of approaching “galloping hooves”, recreated by the London Symphony Orchestra in a rousing version of Rag “N” Bone Man’s “Giant”. “The ‘Drumbeat’ campaign is a fresh demonstration of how Lloyds Bank continues to support its customers, wherever they may be, and remains by their side, whatever life throws at them,” said Ben Tollett, ground executive creative director at adam&eveDDB, which created the new campaign.

    Watch the new Lloyds Bank advert in full

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