By Jon Lees
Germany: Sibylle Vogt, a rising star of the saddle in Germany, has rounded off a breakthrough year by securing a job with Arc winning trainer Peter Schiergen next year.
Vogt, 25, will be second jockey to the powerful Cologne stable where she will be understudy to Bauryzhan Murzabayev, the country’s reigning champion who is also joining from February 1.
“When I was first told I could be the second jockey at Asterblute I thought it was a dream.” said Vogt. “It’s the first time in Germany a girl has got a job like this.
“It’s a good chance for me to ride good horses in Group races. Bauryzhan Murzabayev rides at 55kg (8st 6lb) and I can ride 52kg (8st 2lb) so hopefully there will be plenty of rides for me.”
Vogt, who will continue to ride as first choice to Carmen Bocksai, added: “Peter Schiergen has a lot of young horses, especially two-year-olds, and his oldest horses are aged four so there is lots to look forward to.”
Schiergen, who trained Danedream to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in 2011, said: “We have watched Sibylle’s development for a long time. We are convinced that this step is very good for both sides.”
Swiss-born Vogt came to international attention in February when she took part in the ground-breaking male v female jockeys’ challenge in Riyadh at the inaugural Saudi Cup meeting.
Not only did she ride a winner before finishing second on the night in the overall standings, she was promoted to first place when one of Mike Smith’s mounts tested positive for cobalt and was disqualified.
Back in Germany she has enjoyed her best campaign with her 34 winners taking her to eighth in the rider standings. She has also ridden 22 winners in France and claimed a treble at Lyon-La-Soie last month.
“My season has been super, incredible,” said Vogt. “First there was the jockeys challenge in Saudi Arabia which I won, then I won my second Group race, also my first Quinte race, and my second Listed race.
“I have ridden for lots of trainers and am riding more and more in Group races, so I hope I can win more of those.
“In France I like the 1.5kg allowance for women because it provides a good chance to ride better horses. Including France I’ve ridden 56 winners this year, my best season ever. I think with Corona that’s not too bad.”
Vogt moved to Germany four years ago to work for Markus Klug before moving to Bocksai, a supporter during the jockey’s early years in Switzerland, for whom she opened her Group account on Winterfuchs in last year’s G3 Dr Busch-Memorial.
In Saudi Arabia she was the least known of a cast of international riders that included not only US Hall of Fame rider Smith, but her idol Frankie Dettori, Olivier Peslier, Yutaka Take, Lisa Allpress, Emma-Jayne Wilson and Mickaelle Michel.
“I think Saudi Arabia was one of the reasons why I now ride in more Group races,” said Vogt. “For people to see a woman ride as good as a man then you get better chances. I was really nervous to be among the best jockeys in the world and I had only ridden 90 winners. It was the best thing I did this year. I learned a lot.”
• Visit Peter Schiergen’s stable website