Racing personalities pay respects to Pat Eddery

Racing personalities past and present gathered to pay their respects to Pat Eddery at his funeral in Thame yesterday.
Racing personalities pay respects to Pat Eddery

Eddery, crowned champion Flat jockey 11 times, died on November 10 at the age of 63.

Contemporaries from his 35-year career in the weighing room attending the service at St Mary the Virgin Church included Joe Mercer, Willie Carson, Jimmy Lindley, Ray Cochrane and Philip Robinson.

Among other leading jockeys present were Frankie Dettori, who was one of the pallbearers, Jamie Spencer, Jason Weaver, Martin Dwyer, Steve Drowne and George Baker.

Trainers were well represented too and included John Dunlop, for whom Eddery rode Silver Patriarch to claim his 4,000th victory in the saddle in the St Leger at Doncaster in 1997 and Peter Walwyn, who handled one of Eddery’s most-celebrated winners in Grundy.

Michael Stoute, Brian Meehan, Roger Charlton, Con Horgan and Jeremy Noseda were other top trainers among those present.

Mourners also included Paul Smith, representing Coolmore, Mike Dillon, of Ladbrokes, owner-breeder Lord Tavistock, Dale Gibson, executive director of the Professional Jockeys Association, valet Brian Yorke and racing broadcasters Matt Chapman and Mike Cattermole.

The address was read by Brough Scott, the former jump jockey, journalist, racing presenter and now chairman of the Injured Jockeys Fund.

The service was followed by a private cremation in Oxford and a celebration of his life at Notley Tythe Barn in Long Crendon.

The brilliant Irish-born rider amassed more than 4,600 winners in an illustrious career, a total bettered only by the legendary Gordon Richards in Britain.

His tally included 14 domestic Classic triumphs and the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe four times, most famously with Dancing Brave in 1986.

He retired from the saddle in 2003 and became a trainer, with the highlight being the victory of Hearts Of Fire in a Group One in Italy in 2009.

He was awarded an OBE in 2005.

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