Flint has spark for training

Rhys Flint on board Fair Along

Jockey Rhys Flint has decided to give up riding and turn to training. It’s a move he hinted at some time ago, and comes about partly because of a battle to keep on top of his weight.

Flint’s decision also shows how hard it can be to make the transition from conditional jockey to full professional status. Flint is only 21 years old now, and two years ago, when he topped the conditional jockeys’ table, he looked to have a bright future ahead of him.

Yesterday he tweeted, "That's me done, won't be renewing my licence in September, good fun while it lasted. I'll (be) going for a training licence, it's something I've always been mad to do."

Flint wasn’t short of ability, and showed himself to good effect in his biggest wins, when partnering Fair Along to a brace of victories in the Grade 2 John Smith’s Hurdle at Wetherby. In total Flint rode 121 winners, in the four years he has held a license, but this season, he’s had only eight rides since the beginning of May.

Now Flint plans to start training some time next year, once he has completed the learning modules he needs to do before taking out a licence. He’s half a dozen boxes earmarked in his father’s yard at Bridgend, and has already been doing much of the work to prepare Captain Scarlett for his races. If the two wins from four races this summer is a measure of what’s to come, Flint will make a real success in training.

He said of his decision, “I’m not sour about the whole thing. I’m very grateful for everything and I’ve ridden some very good horses, but I will probably be more passionate about training than I have been about being a jockey. It is something that I have always wanted to do, but it is just a shame that it has come sooner than I would have hoped.”

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