OISIN Murphy will be free to return to raceriding from next Thursday, having served a 14-month suspension imposed by the British Horseracing Authority.

The 27-year-old jockey, who has been champion in Britain three times, was banned after admitted to breaking Covid rules, misleading the regulator and prejudicial conduct, plus two alcohol breaches.

This week the BHA issued a statement setting out some detail regarding Murphy’s imminent return to race riding with the aim of showing the licensing process to be “clean, safe and fair.”

The statement said: “When assessing any application for a licence, the BHA must be satisfied that in approving the application the reputation of, and public confidence in, the sport in this country is not jeopardised. It is therefore incumbent upon any applicant to demonstrate why they consider themselves to be a suitable individual and that they have the moral integrity, honesty and good character to uphold the sport’s values.

“In preparation for a return to race riding Mr Murphy has spent a number of months engaging with the BHA. We are grateful for Mr Murphy’s timely and courteous approach to the relicensing process.

“As part of Mr Murphy’s application, the BHA’s Chief Medical Advisor Dr Jerry Hill has made an assessment in relation to the Medical Standards for Fitness to Ride. Mr Murphy provided samples for testing and also met at length with the BHA’s Integrity Team to discuss matters arising from his rule breaches and his return to race riding.

“The application has been reviewed carefully and the BHA has determined that Mr Murphy is a suitable individual to hold a licence, with relevant conditions attached. The licence will be granted from Thursday, February 16th.

“While the full conditions will not be made public, they include the need for Mr Murphy to remain sober and avoid the use of any illicit substances or social drugs. To monitor this, Mr Murphy will be subject to an enhanced testing regime both on the racecourse, and through the providing of hair samples for analysis at random times of the BHA’s choosing.

“Mr Murphy must also engage in regular contact, through his own medical professionals, with Dr Jerry Hill to ensure his ongoing fitness to ride. These conditions will be reviewed after 12 months, as well as being subject to alteration or amendment should the BHA consider this necessary during the course of his licence.

“If any of the conditions are not met, the BHA reserves the right to seek suspension of the withdrawal of Mr Murphy’s licence as applicable.

“The BHA is grateful for Mr Murphy’s professional approach during what has been an extensive process and wishes him well both on his return to racing and with regards to his personal wellbeing.”

Murphy lost his champion jockey title to William Buick last year and Buick is the 1/2 favourite with most bookmakers to retain the title. Murphy is 7/4 to win it back. Husband and wife Tom Marquand (14/1) and Hollie Doyle (20/1) are next in the betting.