Irish jockey, Barry Geraghty, rode his first winner at Down Royal back in January 1997 and his progress since then has been nothing short of remarkable. He has been crowned Champion Jockey on two occasions in Ireland, in 1999-2000 and 2003-2004.
He was leading rider at the 2003 Cheltenham Festival and led Moscow Flyer in the Queen Mother Champion Chase and easily prevailed by seven lengths. He had five winners that week and has since won his fourth Champion Chase at the 2012 Cheltenham festival on Finians Rainbow. Barry has had at least one winner at each Cheltenham festival since his first victory in 2002.
He continued the season in incredible form taking the most coveted prize of them all – the Aintree Grand National on the Jimmy Mangan-trained Monty’s Pass. In recognition of his amazing year, Geraghty was voted as ‘Sports Personality Of The Year’ later that season for his wonderful victories, the first time that this prize had been won by anyone in the racing industry.
On the 2 November 2009 he rode his 1000th winner under National Hunt Rules in UK and Ireland when the Nicky Henderson trained Duc De Regniere won at Kempton.
Fresh off the back of another remarkable Cheltenham Festival, where he won yet another five times for trainer Nicky Henderson, on Sprinter Sacre in the 2012 Arkle Challenge Trophy, Simonsig in the 2012 Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle, Bobs Worth in the 2012 RSA Chase, Finians Rainbow in the 2012 Queen Mother Champion Chase and Riverside Theatre in the 2012 Ryanair Chase, he had hoped to continue the duo's winning ways on Shakalakaboomboom in the 2012 Grand National.
But despite giving him a fantastic ride around the course, he couldn't keep up with the leaders but still finished a very respectable 9th place. And given that Shakalakaboomboom was only 8 years old, he was sure to be back again.
Nicky Henderson had only one runner in 2013 in Roberto Goldback but was unseated at the last fence and was out of the race.
For the 2014 Crabbies Grand National, Barry Geraghty was on board the Nicky Henderson trained, and Hennessy Gold Cup winning Triolo D'Alene but was pulled-up at Bechers Brook on the second circuit.
It had been expected that Geraghty would pair up with Cheltenham winner, The Druids Nephew, for trainer Neil Mullholland but was ruled out after he suffered a hairline fracture of his left tibia at Downpatrick.
Photo Credit | Meteorshoweryn