Robbie Power, winner of the Cheltenham Gold Cup, announces his retirement from racing after the Punchestown Festival
Robbie Power announced he will be retiring on Friday after clinching victory as a partner of Magic Daze at Punchestown Festival on Thursday.
ower, 40, who has won the Cheltenham Gold Cup, Grand National and Irish Grand National among others, has suffered badly from injuries in recent years.
After returning from a lengthy absence with a back injury in January 2021, he was sidelined between October last year and January 2022 when he broke his hip.
It’s been hard to find winners since his return – but he almost went out of the race in style when he finished second in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham on Minella Indo.
He looked as good as ever on Henry de Bromhead’s Magic Daze in the Pigsback.com Handicap Chase but confirmed his final ride will be on Gordon Elliott’s Teahupoo in the Paddy Power Champion Hurdle.
Power, who thanked Jessica Harrington for being his biggest supporter throughout his career, also enjoyed success with Elliott and had a brief stint with Colin Tizzard in the UK.
He won the 2007 Grand National on Elliott’s Silver Birch, the 2017 Gold Cup on Harrington’s Sizing John and the pair doubled to win the Irish National in the same season with Our Duke.
This was arguably Power’s best campaign ever as he also teamed with Tizzard to win three Grade Ones at the Grand National Meeting with Pingshou, Fox Norton and Finian’s Oscar. Fox Norton and Sizing John would also win at Punchestown to cap two amazing months.
Unfortunately for Power, a downturn in Tizzard’s form coincided with his injury woes and he moved back home. But Tizzard was responsible for his recent Grade One winner Fiddlerontheroof in the 2020 Tolworth Hurdle.
Power said: “It’s because of the injuries. I had back surgery last summer, came back in October and then I broke my hip. I’ll be 41 next month and I’m not getting any younger. I had injections in my hip but it didn’t really work.
“Tomorrow the whole family is coming and I still have a few good rides ahead of me. My wife knew and my agent knew, but my dad always told me if you tell one person you’ve told one person too much, so I’ve tried to keep it as quiet as possible.
“There are several days where I woke up and thought that was it. If I had won the Gold Cup I would have gone then but Punchestown was lucky for me to ride here where I rode my first winner and now I’m sure I’ll ride my last here, that’s enough.
“It’s a relief to announce this as this morning my agent asked me if I was sure. I wanted to go out on something like a high, but I have to do exercises every morning just to be able to ride.
“I’ve been doing this for 21 years and if someone said I would ride the winners I have I would have taken it. I’ve been very fortunate to have basically raced for Jessica Harrington my entire career. She took me under her wing and almost all of my big winners were for her.
“She stood by me through all the ups and downs and was an incredible mentor to me.”
https://www.independent.ie/sport/horse-racing/cheltenham-gold-cup-winner-robbie-power-announces-retirement-from-racing-after-punchestown-festival-41597634.html Robbie Power, winner of the Cheltenham Gold Cup, announces his retirement from racing after the Punchestown Festival