Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YORK to 80360 or send an email»
David O’Meara gets back on the horse for charity race
HE’S better known these days for his exploits as a trainer, but David O’Meara is to get back in the saddle next week to raise cash for charity.
The former jump jockey, who has carved out a huge reputation as a handler from his Nawton base over the past three years, is one of the riders going for glory in the Clipper Logistics Legends Classified Stakes at Doncaster on Wednesday.
Sixteen riders are getting back on the horse in aid of Jack Berry House, the rehabiliation centre for jockeys that will be built in Malton, and the Northern Racing College.
The line up features Carl Llewellyn, who captured the Grand National on Party Politics in 1992 and Earth Summit in 1998, and Derby-winning jockey Michael Hills, who rode more than 2,000 winners worldwide.
Boroughbridge’s Kevin Darley, who won the Flat jockeys’ championship in 2000, returns for another crack at the contest after finishing seventh last year, while Willie Supple, who partnered more than 800 winners in Britain and Ireland, has his first ride in the race.
The mile event has been organised by the Boston Spa-based Professional Jockeys’ Association’s Industry Liaison Officer Dale Gibson, who will also be riding in the annual race.
Gibson said: “I’m very happy with the jockeys we have got riding this year. It has always been ideal to refresh as many participants as possible each year and obviously some people become available and some become unavailable.
“We have got a Grand National winning jockey in Carl Llewellyn, Willie Supple is coming over from Ireland, and then we have Classic winning riders in Michael Hills and John Reid, so it is a really good turnout.
“I have spoken to everybody over the last few days and they are looking forward to it. Jockeys remain competitive even when they have retired and that competitive edge will be seen to good effect next week.
“There will be plenty of banter and I think Frankie (Dettori) is riding at Doncaster on Wednesday, so having him in the weighing room along with us elderly people – if we can call ourselves that – will add to it.
“Everyone has been doing plenty of riding out and fitness work. I have been on the bike for 45 minutes every day for the last month and riding out for Michael Dods on Saturdays.
“We have already raised £360,000 since the initiative started three years ago and we will aim to raise six figures this year for Jack Berry House in Malton, which will start being built very shortly, and the redevelopment of the Northern Racing College.
“They are two great causes. One is helping people get into racing and the other is helping those who may have been injured in racing, so it’s helping people at both ends of the spectrum.”
Comments are closed on this article.