Clive Brittain: 'All Pat Eddery ever wanted to be was a jockey'

John Dunlop has described Pat Eddery as a “delightful man” following his death at the age of 63.
Clive Brittain: 'All Pat Eddery ever wanted to be was a jockey'

Eddery was champion jockey 11 times during a career which spanned over 35 years and saw him compete against some of the most celebrated names in racing.

Lester Piggott, Steve Cauthen and Willie Carson were amongst his contemporaries in the weighing room along with the likes of Frankie Dettori and Kieren Fallon in his later years, yet Eddery trails only Gordon Richards on the list of all-time winners.

He partnered over 4,600 domestic winners, with his 4,000th success coming aboard the Dunlop-trained Silver Patriarch in the St Leger at Doncaster in 1997.

“Pat rode his first winner for me in 1973 at Bath and in all had nearly 400 winners for me,” said Dunlop.

“I was lucky to be training in a vintage era of jockeys and the fact Pat rode for me on and off for 30 years tells you everything.

“He was a delightful man to spend time with, he had huge success but was great company at the same time.

“Silver Patriarch was special. To come back from being beaten a nose in the Derby and win the St Leger, and for it to be his 4,000th winner made it a very memorable day.

“I’m so sorry to hear the news.”

One of Eddery’s closest friends in the weighing room, and with whom he had some of his greatest battles on the track, was Carson.

He said: “It’s a very sad loss. He was a huge part of my life because we were together and friends for a very long time.

“He was liked by everyone. I spent lots of time with him. Part of my life has gone as well.

“When he retired, he hit a problem because racing had been his life — all he ever wanted to be was a jockey. He tried the breeding game which didn’t work, he never settled into retirement.

“He’s gone at an early age — 63 is no age at all — and he’ll be sadly missed.”

Clive Brittain used Eddery when he was an up-and-coming apprentice.

“It’s a sorry day. He was a great friend and an integral part of my success at Carlburg,” said Brittain.

“You always got 100% from Pat, be it in a Classic or a Brighton seller.

“He made so few mistakes, like Ryan Moore today, and that’s what sets the best apart from the others.”

‘All he ever wanted to be was a jockey’

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