Tag Archive for: Aidan Coleman

Recently-retired trio grateful for Sandown tribute

Paddy Brennan, Jamie Moore and Aidan Coleman may have all bowed out during the 2023-24 campaign, but they enjoyed one more moment in the spotlight when honoured at Sandown’s end-of-season finale.

The trio have celebrated great moments in the saddle and received mementos to commemorate their careers during the prize-giving ceremony that preceded the final jumps meeting of the season.

Paddy Brennan was the most recent of the three to hang up his boots, waving goodbye after steering Fergal O’Brien’s Manothepeople to victory at Cheltenham earlier this month.

He has no regrets about his decision but the 2004-2005 leading conditional jockey was delighted to finally get his moment to grace the champions’ stage at Sandown.

Paddy Brennan bowed out at Cheltenham earlier this month
Paddy Brennan bowed out at Cheltenham earlier this month (Tim Goode/PA)

“It’s lovely to see everyone at Sandown and I’ve never been on the stage before. When I was champion conditional, I had to go to Market Rasen that day and I rode for Martin Pipe,” said Brennan.

“I’m so lucky to have got to the end of my career and I have loved it, but I’m definitely ready for the next chapter.

“I think I was semi-retired for a while anyway, as I wasn’t riding so much, but I was always scared of retiring, as you never know how you’re going to feel. I never wanted to go back once I retired and I’m very happy with my decision.”

Jamie Moore enjoyed some of his finest hours at Sandown aboard Sire De Grugy and he was equally thrilled to be honoured by the course, having crossed over to retirement in February.

Retiring jockeys Aidan Coleman, Jamie Moore and Paddy Brennan at Sandown
Retiring jockeys Aidan Coleman, Jamie Moore and Paddy Brennan at Sandown (Steven Paston for the Jockey Club/PA)

“I had a long career and I’ve been overwhelmed by the appreciation I have had just for doing a hobby really,” said Moore.

“Sandown means a lot me and I’ve had some brilliant days here and it’s my favourite track. It’s really nice to get this recognition and I don’t feel like I deserve it, but I’ve enjoyed a brilliant career.

“To go out with Paddy and Aidan, two lads I’ve known for a very long time, is brilliant and it’s very kind to give us this trophy.”

Moore was sporting some rather fashionable bandages on his nose courtesy of a recent operation and he joked: “I’ve had a wind-op, you can declare the wind-op on the racecard now.”

Like Moore, Aidan Coleman’s career was cut short by injury woes and it was perhaps fitting that he was given a share of the limelight on the day one of his showpiece rides Jonbon put in a dazzling display to pick up the Celebration Chase.

Having enjoyed fantastic victories aboard the likes of Paisley Park and Put The Kettle On, the multiple Grade One-winning rider is now searching for his next opportunity in the sport.

“I wouldn’t have minded a few more years, but I’m happy with what I’ve achieved, at the same time,” said Coleman.

“I’m very grateful to Sandown and it means a lot to myself, Paddy and Jamie.

“I’m looking forward to whatever might come next and I’m kind of struggling to find a place, but hopefully something will turn up.”

Aidan Coleman announces retirement following injury battle

Aidan Coleman has announced his retirement from the saddle having failed to recover from a knee injury.

The 35-year-old suffered a fall at Worcester in June and has been battling to return ever since, undergoing several surgeries on his knee and a shattered tibia.

Coleman, who will possibly be best remembered for his association with the recently-retired Paisley Park, has undergone a lengthy rehabilitation process but has conceded he will not recover sufficiently to resume his riding career.

“The prognosis early was quite bleak about returning to ride,” he told Racing TV’s Luck On Sunday.

“But around September when the rehab was early I was kidding myself that I could get back from this. In early December I had another operation and since that the progress has really plateaued.

“The gym is good because it’s a stable surface but I can’t run or jump. I can’t ride a horse really. A lot of people would say I couldn’t anyway so what’s the difference!

“Since Christmas, every time I’ve tried to ride a horse it’s not really gone well and I just can’t really do it and I definitely wouldn’t be able to ride in a race or anything like that.

“Speaking to Jerry Hill (the BHA’s chief medical adviser) and my surgeon, my chances of improving are negative now, so that’s it. My knee won’t stand the demands of being a jockey or get anywhere near it, so that’s it.”

Aidan Coleman with Paisley Park
Aidan Coleman with Paisley Park (John Walton/PA)

Coleman enjoyed a successful association early in his career with Venetia Williams but overlooked her 100-1 Grand National winner Mon Mome in favour of stablemate Stan.

There were many good days in a stellar career, though, with Emma Lavelle’s Paisley Park winning the Long Walk Hurdle three times and the Stayers’ Hurdle in 2019.

Coleman also picked up the rides on Epatante, winning an Aintree Hurdle and two Fighting Fifths, and Jonbon, on whom he won multiple Grade Ones.

“I think the last few years I’ve been at my happiest, riding horses like Paisley Park has been a mainstay since 2019, we picked up Epatante, Jonbon, winning the Champion Chase on Put The Kettle On. I would have a good army of behind me when I got to September and they hit the board regularly,” said Coleman.

“I kind of gave up the idea of being champion jockey and being a slave to the game, that just wasn’t for me. I enjoyed the good horses so much I just wanted to focus on them rather than the numbers and since I did that I think I rode better.”

Churchstonewarrior battles for Ten Up triumph

Churchstonewarrior secured a deserved first victory over fences with a determined display in the William Hill Ten Up Novice Chase at Navan.

Jonathan Sweeney’s stable star has a bumper success and two wins over hurdles to his credit, but had to make do with the runner-up spot in his first three chase starts – most recently coming home behind Gaillard Du Mesnil in a Grade One at Leopardstown over Christmas.

Easing in class for this three-mile Grade Two, Churchstonewarrior was a 9-4 chance in the hands of Aidan Coleman, with John McConnell’s recent course-and-distance winner Mahler Mission the 5-4 favourite.

In the end it came down to a fight between the front two in the market, with Churchstonewarrior digging deep to get the better of Mahler Mission by three-quarters of a length.

Flanking Maneuver travelled strongly for a long way on his first competitive appearance in over two years and connections will undoubtedly be delighted with his performance in finishing a close-up third.

“That’s great, he was good. Aidan was very happy with him and said he jumped well,” Sweeney of the winner.

Churchstonewarrior with connections at Navan
Churchstonewarrior with connections at Navan (Gary Carson/PA)

“I’ll talk to the lads now and see, but he’s in the National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham. We’ll get over today and see how he is tomorrow.

“He’s developing away and improving all the time. I’d imagine he could be a National horse in time.

“I’m delighted for the owners, they are a great bunch of lads. They were getting a fair bit of money for him last year. He was vetted and was going, Tom (Hegarty) rang me one evening and asked what I thought and I said ‘I’d have to sell him if he was mine’ but they kept him anyway, which was great.”