A new kind of obstacle race? Aki Hoshino, 32, is in a romantic relationship with JRA jockey Kosei Miura, 13 years her junior.
One jockey comments, “They’re very much in love. Miura leaves as soon as the Sunday race is over. He told me that she is a good cook and he feels comfortable being with her at her home.”
The couple met in October last year when Miura rode Hashitte-Hoshiino, named by Hoshino, in its first race. The jockey also made an appearance on a TV show hosted by Hoshino, and the two started dating in spring this year.
Miura’s mentor and trainer Michifumi Kono is outraged at the unwanted media attention and criticized Hoshino in his blog. The concern over the young jockey, though, apparently is a little more complicated.
Those associated with the horse racing business have hinted that there is an ongoing dispute between Miura and Kono. “Last fall Miura’s mother founded a company that is now managing everything related to the media – without Kono’s consent. In the horse racing community, the trainer is like a parent to the jockey. The bond is strong between trainer and jockey, and the norm is for the trainer to manage everything from daily routines to the fees. It’s hardly surprising that Kono feels resentful.”
And the relationship with Hoshino has made matters even worse.
Kono has refused to comment, and the entertainment agency collaborating with the company managed by Miura’s mother seemed perplexed. “It’s true that Mr Kawano was not present for the signing of the contract but he had been apprised and there shouldn’t be a problem.”
But the discord between trainer and jockey is a concern for Hoshino. It remains to be seen how the relationship will develop.