National Hunt jockey Jack Sherwood - who most famously rode Ibis Du Rheu to victory in the 2016 Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys Handicap Hurdle, has decided to retire at the age of 27 due to lack of opportunities and a gradual disillusionment with racing.
A Cheltenham Festival winner, Sherwood has been riding professionally for the past decade and has endured much success with the likes of Present Man and Silsol for Champion Trainer Paul Nicholls at his yard in Ditcheat.
Son of Ludlow’s clerk of the course Simon, Jack partnered 61 winners under rules in his career, before only managing to add an extra two victories last season from 77 opportunities in total.
Looking onto just thirty years of age, his premature retirement bodes no non-health issues.
(Credit: Racing Post) He said: "It’s hard to walk away from something you love but I've reached a certain age and the riding is not going in the right direction, and packing it all in is something I've had in the back of my head for a little while.
"Last season I just became a bit disillusioned with the whole thing and you just get to a point when you think there's no logic in continuing down the same old path.
"I consider you've got to be 100 per cent driven in anything to do well, and if it’s only around 50-50 or so then there's not a lot of point in keeping up the pretence."
Reflecting on his career as a whole, Sherwood added: "I've had some really great times riding and I want to say a massive thank you to Paul Nicholls for giving me so many chances when I was lucky enough to be based at his yard.
"Without him the big-race successes aboard the likes of Ibis Du Rheu, Silsol and Present Man wouldn't have happened.
"I'd like to stay in racing if the right job came along but, in all honesty, it’s an open book as to what I do next and I'm looking at all options.
"I intend to make a clean break for the next few months and weigh everything up before making a firm decision."
We wish Jack a happy retirement, but hope to see him back in racing through a different role in the near future.