Irish jockey Pat Eddery has died aged 63
One of Ireland’s most successful jockeys, he retired from racing in 2003
Irish jockey Pat Eddery has died aged 63.
From Newbridge, Co Kildare, he was an 11-time champion flat jockey in Britain and claimed four Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe victories. He won more than 4,600 races before his retirement in 2003.
Confirming the news, Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to Prince Khalid Abdullah, in whose silks Eddery had some of his greatest days, said: “It is extremely sad news. Everyone at Juddmonte is very shocked and saddened by it.”
Eddery’s achievements put him on record as one of the greatest jockeys of all time.
He won 14 British Classics, including three Derbys aboard Grundy (1975), Golden Fleece (1982) and Quest For Fame (1990).
However, his performance aboard Dancing Brave in the 1986 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe is widely regarded as one of the most memorable of his career.
In one of the classiest fields ever assembled, Eddery made his challenge last, down the centre of the track, to snatch victory.
Other famous successes include those of Pebbles at the Breeders’ Cup, Silver Patriarch in the St Leger — which marked his 4,000th winner — and Zafonic in the 2000 Guineas.
Grimthorpe believes Eddery’s championship tally was testament to his abilities in a perceived golden era for jockeys.
“He spanned the greatest era for jockeys ever. Lester Piggott, Steve Cauthen, Willie Carson, all were exceptional yet Pat’s ability was unquestioned,” said Grimthorpe.
Eddery, who had been suffering from ill health of late, began a training career following his retirement, with the highlight being the victory of Hearts Of Fire in a Group One in Italy.