Robbie Power has revealed he will bring the curtain down on a glittering
career following Friday’s action at the Punchestown Festival, writes Jack Lacey-Hatton.
Power, 40, a former Cheltenham Gold Cup and Grand National winner on both sides of the Irish Sea, will say his farewell to the sport after saddling Teahupoo for Gordon Elliott in the Champion Hurdle.
One of the most experienced active jockeys, he will bow out after a highly successful career of riding winners, making the announcement after his latest success aboard Magic Daze in the EMS Copiers Novice Handicap Chase on Thursday.
Among his most memorable winners are Sizing John, who triumphed in the Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Punchestown Gold Cup in 2017, and 33-1 outsider Silver Birch in the 2007 Grand National, in what was only his second ride in world’s most famous race.
The son of famous Irish show jumper Captain Con Power, Robbie has been a mainstay in the weighing room for over two decades.
“Teahuphoo will be my last ride," revealed Power after Magic Daze’s win. "There have been so many highlights that it's hard to pick one.
“The day Sizing John won his third Gold Cup here at Punchestown, beating Coneygree, that was as good a race as I ever rode in.
“I got a huge buzz out of that. There have been so many highs and I have had a wonderful career."
The 2017 season proved to be a standout one for Power.
As well as Sizing John’s legendary Gold Cup wins, he hit a purple patch when finishing as the leading rider at the Aintree Festival and then landing the Irish Grand National just weeks later for Jessica Harrington, piloting Our Duke successfully around
the Fairyhouse obstacles.
Power missed the first half of this season, first for the surgery then after a nasty fall at Tramore in October.
Though he has made a successful return to the saddle since returning in January, Power admitted the pain was taking its toll and played a big part in his decision.
"I had my back operated on last
summer and fractured my hip when I came back in October," he said.
“The last couple of months have been
torture with the hip pain.
“I’m 41 and I’m not getting any younger.
I had injections in my hip and it just didn’t really work.
"My family are coming tomorrow and I’m
looking forward to it. It’ll be a day out for them and I’ve got some good rides
tomorrow so I’m looking forward to it.
"My wife knew (the decision) and my sister
and agent. But my father always told me, the one person you tell is one person
too many, so I was keeping it as quiet as possible.