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Former Champion Jump Jockey Ri...
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Former Champion Jump Jockey Richard Johnson announces retirement

Ann-Marie Donelan
Ann-Marie Donelan

20:25 3 Apr 2021

Four-time champion jump jockey Richard Johnson has announced his unexpected retirement.

43-year-old Johnson is second in the all-time list of National Hunt Racing winners behind Tony 'AP' McCoy.

The Englishman made the announcement after his final ride on Brother Tedd at Newton Abbot on Saturday.

"After nearly 30 years in the saddle, the time has come for me to retire.

"I have been so extraordinarily lucky to have ridden so many wonderful horses, and for so many incredible trainers and owners.

"It was particularly important to me to finish on one for (trainer) Philip and Sarah Hobbs - who, like Henry Daly, have supported me for over 20 years. I'll never be able to articulate what their loyalty has meant to me."

Johnson rode two Cheltenham Gold Cup winners, Looks Like Trouble in 2000 and Native River in 2018.

Following AP McCoy's retirement from the saddle in 2015, johnson was champion jump jockey for four successive years, from 2015/16 to 2018/19.

Johnson also released a statement in which he thanked a number of people who have been involved in his career.

This read:

There are so many people to thank who have been part of my journey.

Without 'the Duke' (trainer David Nicholson) and Dinah Nicholson and their remarkable staff, I'd never have got that first leg up.

Noel Chance, Peter Bowen and Milton Bradley - thank you for putting your trust in me when I was starting out. Those were the days that shaped my career, with so many people who remain lifelong friends.

The truth is there are simply too many people to thank on an individual basis, but you know who you are and what you mean to me.

To jockeys past and present who I've shared weighing-room benches with up-and-down the country, to the valets who have looked after me, to the doctors who've patched me up and to the physios who've put me back together.

Without (agent) Dave Roberts, I'd have never ridden as many winners - and without the help of physio Kate Davis in recent years, I wouldn't physically have been able to. I salute you all.

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