Eventmasters Horse Racing Ambassador Richard Johnson continued his terrific season as rode his 3,000 career winner at Ascot on Saturday. The National Hunt Racing legend became just the second jump jockey to reach the magic number in Britain and Ireland.
Johnson has enjoyed a stunning season and looks set to win his first ever jumps jockey title, he currently sits top of the standings on 179 winners for the season, 72 in front of his nearest rival Aidan Coleman.
“Dickie” was again in fine form on Saturday afternoon at Ascot with a double. In the Grade 3 “40 years of Keltbray” Holloway’s Handicap Hurdle, he steered the Phillip Hobbs-trained Rock The Kasbah to a half-length success. Before reaching the famous milestone on Duke Des Champs in the final race of the day.
After the race Johnson told the Racing Post, “When I got to 2,000 winners I never thought I would get to 3,000, so hopefully this isn’t the last milestone I achieve. It’s so hard to put into words – it means an awful lot.
“I’ve been really fortunate over the last 20 years to ride so many nice horses for so many nice people and it is great to reach this landmark.
“I’m the lucky one really – I get a lot of nice rides and I am regularly busy. There’s lads in the weighing room who work just as hard, if not harder, and are not as fortunate so I count my blessings that I’m so lucky to ride these calibre of horses week in week out.”
Johnson on course for first title
There is no doubt that Johnson is one of the most unlucky men in horse racing, having finished behind his great rival Sir Anthony McCoy on 16 occasions.
The 38-year-old could now set his sights on riding 200 winners for the time in a season and with plenty of good rides at horse racing meetings up-and-down the country, Johnson could easily pass McCoy’s tally of 231 winners which he achieved in his final season.
Eventmasters are delighted to have Richard Johnson as our Horse Racing Ambassador for 2016. The National Hunt legend will be on hand in our Silks@Frontrunners Cheltenham Festival hospitality facility, before and after racing to provide his expert opinion.