Donnacha O'Brien Retires From The Saddle To Become A Trainer

Donnacha O'Brien

21 year old Donnacha O'Brien yesterday announced an end to his time in the saddle with the two time Irish Champion jockey now going to be concentrating on life as a trainer following in the footsteps of his grandfather, father and older brother.

Donnacha rode his first winner as a jockey back in 2014 as a young 16-year-old on Quartz, trained by his father Aidan O'Brien.

Since then the well established rider has gone on to land back to back Irish Jockeys titles landing 111 winners last season with his final winner again coming for his father with Nobel Prize in a Naas maiden on the final day of the 2019 Flat turf season in Ireland.

It was rumoured that O'Brien would become a trainer after his spell as a rider but it comes as a shock announcement with him being this young but he is now set to carry on in racing with his training career and already has an establishment set up in Longfield, County Tipperary. 

We already know of one horse that he will be handing next season with the unbeaten Fancy Blue formerly with his father and is currently unbeaten in both his starts to date.

The youngster revealed his retirement on Twitter and said: “After thinking about things for a while I have decided to concentrate on training next year.

“Riding has been very good to me and I owe everything to the people around me. I want to give special thanks to the Magnier, Smith and Tabor families along with my own family for all their support.

“I look forward to training a small group of horses next year and will hopefully build from there.”

The superstar jockey landed his first ever Group One winner at Irish Champions Weekend back in 2016 when he teamed up with his brother Joseph to land the Moyglare Stakes Intricately. 

Since then he has gone on to land 10 black type races in his riding career including dual wins in the 2000 Guineas, an Irish Derby and his latest in the British Champion Stakes at Ascot.