My Race Days
Things are really tipping away nicely for me at the minute with 3 winners in the last 9 days. Not bad especially at this time of year when with single figure fields and AP McCoy and Dicky Johnson are available in every race. That's now 4 for the season (2 here and 2 in Ireland). Last season I did not have my 1st winner until October... So let's keep kicking while things are going well for me… G-String!
Last weekend I had just the 1 mount at Stratford on Saturday evening for Robin Matthews. It went on to finish 5th which we were all fairly happy with as he will come on for the run. That night I stayed close to Stratford at Billie Worthingtons house who is a former jump jockey but had to retire due to weight problems, as I was flying to ride in Ireland the next day on me old friend Mister Benedictine from Birmingham Airport. At ten o’clock that night I received a call from the Trainer Brendan Duke - he said it was raining very heavily in Ireland and was thinking about pulling the horse out the next day. This put me in a dilemma as if Brendan’s horse was not running I could stay in England and go to ride Cypress Grove at Fontwell who now would be running as the rain had arrived. I put it to Brendan that if the horse was in the same form as on the Tuesday before it would not matter what the ground was like - he said that he was in even better form so I said I'd see him in the morning. So an early start to catch my flight and I arrived at The Curragh where Brendan was waiting to pick me up, the trip as any with Brendan was quite eventful. As he hadn’t been to Killbeggin in years he was not quite sure of the way and with no maps or sat nav we was guessing the way by looking at hills and trees and this is a true story!
Despite going miles out of the way we still arrive in goodish time. I had a walk of the track and despite it being softer than idea I thought we still had enough in hand as he was running with just a 6lb penalty. He settled a lot better as the gas was gone out of him from running earlier in the week, made a mistake with a circuit to run, had to round the outside and still won hard held! More please Vicker. For those 2 wins he will be running off 21lb higher in the handicap the next time he runs which all going well will be on the 25th June back at Killbeggin and then onto The Galway Festival. Whatever he does now he owes me nothing. Meanwhile back at Fontwell Cypress Grove also won and the 1st time blinkers that I suggested did the trick. I dont get back home to ride in Ireland that often so my parents made the 2 hour drive up from Tipperary which was great and to ride a winner as well! Brendan invited them in for the winning picture so it was fun to have them there.
On Monday I had a rare day off in Ireland, so when I climbed out of bed I organised a game of tennis at home with a friend of mine Nick Maher, my mother Maura and a friend of hers called Ann. Now let me tell you , my mother does not like to lose, a little bit like me. She likes to also pick the teams to suit her so she chose me for some reason, I only get to play a couple of times a year! So we start and the 1st set goes to the opposition 6/3. I'm giving out to my Mam and she is giving out to me while the other 2 were laughing at us! I said right, let's extract the finger and try win the next set. All of a sudden we are 5/3 down. There is loads of shouting going on but Mammy Bear knows how to give as good as she gets. We get back to 5/5 all, then 6/6 all and my mother keeps saying that this is the last game as she was wrecked. The 2nd set ends up at 7/7 where my mother is ready to callapse. We had played for 2 hours, the banter alone was some crack let alone the game. After 29 years I think Mammy Bear is getting my sense of humour G6 to her LEGEND!
Tuesday I had a 4 o’clock alarm call as I had a 6.25am flight to catch back to Birmingham for racing that day at Ffos Las. The very lucky lady Rebecca got to bring me to the Airport! When I landed I went straight to Lambourn where I was kindly getting a lift racing with AP, with his boy Ger Tumelty doing the driving. While waiting at a service station for Jimmy "Scrooge" McCarthy me and Ger are saying that we would bet any colour of money that Jimmy will be pretending to be asleep by the time we get to The Severn Bridge where there is a Toll charge of £6. So we set off, me and Jimmy are chatting away in the back seats. When we get to the M4/M5 junction Jimmy says " Jesus I'm wrecked" and turns over to do his pretend sleeping, rather than wake the old bear I cough up the Toll!
I had a couple of mounts - 1st one was Michigan D’Isop for John Ryall. He is a 12 year old now and takes a lot of kidding and pushing along but I kept at him and he went on to finish 2nd but beat a long way- 2nd one was for K Burke on a horse called Whispering Jack. He had just one previous run over fences where he did not enjoy a second of it so my job first off was to get him enjoying his jumping and that we did. He again finished 2nd but we were all delighted with the way he jumped so hopefully now we can build on that. Nobody likes coming 2nd but to be fair both horses ran great races and there will be days in them. From a jockeys perspective I think I did all I could so I was left happy enough.
Wednesday with no rides I went to play in a Charity Golf Competition down at Weston-Super-Mere. Jonathon Powell had asked me to play as a CELEBRITY in it so I was glad I was able to make it. Now I would not consider myself a celebrity in any stretch of the word but I have to say I could get used to it! Upon arrival we got VIP parking and during breakfast we were made sit in a special room for the VIPs. HELLOW... I got to play with 3 local members. They were all in their 70s but by god they could play golf. As the weather was lovely I played in shorts and a t-shirt and even left my umbrella in the car - big mistake! Half way round we had a down pour and I got soaked to the skin but then it brightened up again and within half an hour I was dry again. We played well as a team and netted 104points but did not trouble the judge. One person alone scored 49 points so I’d says they were as well handicapped as Mister Benedictine!!!
Thursday after riding out I headed straight to the gym as I had light that evening at Uttoxeter. I had told my agent Russ James not to book me anything under 10st 5lb for the summer so he booked me on one with 10st 3lb. Brillent....while I was there sweating I met Noel Fehily who is recovering from a broken leg from a fall in this years Grand National. He is making good progress and is in good form. After getting home I have a sweat in the bath for an hour and then I set off for the races. When I’m sweating I am usually not in great form but as I went racing with Daryl Jacob it made me feel better about myself. I really do feel sorry for his Mirrow. I now had 2 mounts for Dai Williams who I hadn’t ridden for in nearly 10 years and I’m still in my 20s JUST!!! First up was 9/1 chance Cherekee Star and I jumped out and made all despite him making a noise with a circuit to run. I also lost an iron jumping the last but not many people noticed so I am owning up now! But it does not matter how you look, it’s about getting the job done. My next ride was on Be Kind who was a 50/1 shot - on ratings we could only finish 4th and that’s the placing we filled. Daryl was kind enough to wait half an hour for me so I was able to make a fairly quick getaway.
As I said things are going well for me at the minute. Just like "The Sherminator" used to say " Confidence is High, I repeat Confidence is high " and that makes a massive difference when you are riding. So long may it continue....G-String
Hay, I'm David or Dave Crosse and I'm a professional Jumps jockey originally from near Cashel, Co Tipperary. I am now based and have been for the last 14 years in Lambourn in Berkshire - the home of Jumps racing.
Racing has been going well for me this season and I hope to make a big impact this winter when the proper jumps racing starts. I've been through the mill with injuries down the years but nothing that has ever stopped me getting back in the saddle. I've probably broken bones in places people didn't even realise they had bones.
I'm going to take you through what I get up too on and off the track, and try give you an insight of a jockey's life and the craic we have 24/7.
Being a Jumps jockey is a dangerous game but to me its the best game in the world. I look forward to sharing the craic we have in the weighting room with the Lovetheraces and Attheraces readers. It a side of the sport that very few people see so its going to be pretty special.
So here we go...
- 15.05.13 Borat, Maccy Ds, Da Police and Finch
- 25.04.13 Champion Hurdle, Birth-Week, Shire-race and JackBat
- 21.03.13 Pat, Pigeons and Prayers
- 06.03.13 Cheltenham Previews, Seconditis and Twister the DingBat
- 18.02.13 Starlet Mandy, Daryl's DAwG, two for one and David the DingBat
- 29.01.13 Cabin Fever, a Passport DingBat, me Talking equals Twine and a lot more!
Sorry, I'm not on Twitter at the moment.
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