Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Mick Fitzgerald to retire

Mick Fitzgerald (pictured) yesterday announced his intention to retire from the saddle at the end of the current National Hunt season.

Closely associated with Nicky Henderson's stable, Mick is one of a handful of top jockeys to have won the Grand National and the Gold Cup. In recent years he has suffered more than his share of injuries.

A couple of my memories...

Early in his career I remember Mick being touted by John Francome as a claimer to look out for. At Exeter (or Devon & Exeter as it was then known) I'd had a fiver on an animal at 6/1 in a low grade hurdle race. Less than a mile from home the horse was a good ten lengths clear of his field and showing no signs of stopping when Mick went out the side door.

A few years ago he made amends in my book by winning the Bula hurdle on Geos at a tasty 14/1.

His most famous quote has to be describing the Grand National win on Rough Quest as 'better than sex'.

Enjoy your retirement Mick.

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