Grand National-winning jockey Brendan Powell has called time on his near-twenty year training career, blaming financial pressure as the solitary reason for his unanticipated retirement.
The Irishman, who struck aboard the David Elsworth-trained Rhyme ‘n’ Reason in the Grand National of 1988 as a rider, registered more than 600 winners under both codes in racing as a trainer.
The 58-year-old's training career will most fondly be remembered with the international success he shared with Dark Emerald, who prevailed twice at Meydan back in 2015, including in the District One Handicap under Richard Mullen.
(Credit: Racing Post) Powell reflected: "We've had a long talk with everyone and decided it was best to pull up stumps.
"I've not got enough horses to keep going but I've enjoyed every minute of my training career and trained for some great people.
"Some lovely owners are with me now who have been since the start, we've had some great staff and that's the saddest thing about it with the horses going to other yards.
"I've had the best part of 1,500 winners as a trainer and jockey and I've had a lot of enjoyment out of seeing our kids do so well and riding winners.
"I've been very lucky and I'll definitely miss it but financially I just couldn't keep going with what I had," he concluded.
Now a father to daughter Jenny and son Brendan Powell jr - who is making his name as a fine jockey himself, the old man arguably enjoyed his best year on the Flat in Britain back in 2004, notching up 23 winners and securing more than £154,000 in prize-money for connections.
His most infamous winner of late - Kasperenko, provided the dual Scottish-National winning jockey with Listed success back in November, when he scored in the Floodlit Stakes at Kempton under Martin Harley, and looks to be an exciting recruit for whatever trainer picks him up.
(Credit: Racing Post) He continued: "We've had some great days over the years, including when Dark Emerald won a couple of races on our first trip to Dubai then was placed in a couple of Group races.
"I'd always wanted to go to Dubai and he did so well out there. He was beaten a neck on his first run and just thrived on the weather and routine out there.
"It was a great thrill to win a Listed race with Kasperenko in the winter and we've had some nice jumpers but one that could have been anything was Colonel Frank, who got injured in the Racing Post Chase as a novice but could have been pretty special."
Powell - who can usually be found on a racecourse throughout the week if not at his home yard in Lambourn, reiterated that he does plan to remain in racing in one form or another.
He said: "I'm going to have a think about it and see but I intend to stay in racing and I'm not retiring as such. I hope to have quite a few years left in the sport – it's what I enjoy and love."