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Jockey Pat Smullen dies, aged...
Racing

Jockey Pat Smullen dies, aged 43

Richie McCormack
Richie McCormack

21:32 15 Sep 2020

Pat Smullen has died at the age of 43. 

The nine-time flat racing Irish Champion Jockey was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in March of 2018.

Smullen passed away on Tuesday evening at St. Vincent's Hospital in Dublin.

During a glittering career, he won 12 European Classic races, including the Epsom Derby aboard Harzand in 2016 and the Irish derby twice - with Harzand (2016) and Grey Swallow (2004).

Smullen retired from racing in May of 2019 following medical advice.

Speaking about his cancer treatment to OTB Sports last year, Smullen said, "I actually never thought I was going to die. I just didn't allow myself, whether that was a foolish thing, I don't know. Of course it is going to happen to us all one day, but right now I am not ready. I never allowed myself to think that.

"On occasion, you get down but it would be for about half an hour or an hour and then I'd give myself a kick up the backside and say 'go on, get on with it'. When you see your kids, and a great wife... it's how I dealt with it anyway, and I think that it stood me in good stead.

"I just didn't allow negativity in. There are some people that are very well-meaning, but I didn't like meeting. They meant good, but their whole demeanour was 'this is terrible'. I actually tried to distance myself from that. I just wanted all positivity around me, and I think that is very important.

"If I had one piece of advice to people, it would be that. There is so much going on day-to-day as regards testing and research, that I kept telling myself that they will come up with something, and that this treatment will work. That was very important to me. That is how I dealt with it."

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