Marquand ready for solo Aussie adventure

Tom Marquand married fellow jockey Hollie Doyle in March last year. The pair, who met when pony racing, have been dubbed racing's 'Golden Couple'.

They shared the spoils behind William Buick in the Flat jockeys' championship last term, each riding 91 winners between the Guineas meeting and Champions Day. Both had a trio of Group One victories.

The fact that Hollie and Tom are both extremely good at their jobs and are highly personable, professional and generous with their time, makes them a marketing dream.

Becoming A-list racing celebrities was never part of the plan. Marquand says he is not yet used to it, much less feels like he deserves it.

"We have never really chased it. We recognise the sport needs promoting and if we are doing well, it is our job to go alongside riding and we recognise that," he said.

The pair went down a storm when competing against each other in Japan recently.

"It is one of the places that everyone in racing should try to visit," he added.

"It is an amazing country and we'd both go back in a heartbeat."

Hollie is facing a spell on the sidelines, having broken her left elbow in a fall at Wolverhampton, so Tom is preparing to fly solo to Australia, a trip that could end up being a near three-month stay.

He rode eight winners when last in NSW in 2021, which included partnering the now-retired Addeybb to victory in the Group One Queen Elizabeth Stakes for a second time.

Marquand will team up with trainer William Haggas, who will send four horses to the six-week Sydney Autumn Carnival, which features 18 Group One contests worth over PS22million ($A39m).

However, Marquand, who has ridden 42 winners in total on his last three visits to Sydney, admits the trip, which sees him have his first rides on February 4, could be emotionally challenging.

"I am going to want to go to Australia and if Hollie wasn't injured, she'd be riding here - and having two months away is hard," he said.

"I don't know whether she will come, but it is one of those things.

"Between us, we are both experiencing each other's ups and downs as well, it evens it out even more.

"It helps the relationship. In reality, it has been quite hard sometimes."

As flamboyant 52-year-old Italian Frankie Dettori begins his long goodbye, a farewell tour before retirement from the saddle at the end of this year, the sport of racing will scratch its head and wonder just how it is going to fill the void.

"I don't think anyone could fill the gap that Frankie is going to leave, because he is Frankie," Marquand said.

"He is someone that won't be replaced, not only because of his achievements but the way he goes about it as well - he's Frankie, no one else is going to be Frankie. Anyone else can try, but they are not going to manage it."