Jockeys agent Dave Roberts ends his remarkable career


Jockeys agent Dave Roberts – renowned for leading Sir Anthony McCoy’s glittering career – has announced he will retire at the end of the week.

Roberts has booked rides for a long list of household names – with four-time champion jockey Richard Johnson, as well as Gold Cup and Grand National winners Adrian Maguire, Richard Guest and Andrew Thornton, just a small sample of his clientele.

However, Roberts is best known for his partnership with 20-time champion McCoy, who broke record after record during his career in the saddle.

Roberts told Nick Luck’s Daily Podcast: “I’ve been doing the job for 36 years now, from the first jockey, Dean Gallagher, until now.

Watch what Roberts had to say about Luck On Sunday a few years ago

“I’ve always done my job saying I’ll do it for 12 months and if you’re for the season you’re for the season and the last two months I was just thinking ‘could I do another year of having 365 days of getting up at 5am every day?’

“I think the head said yes, but the body said no. Not that I ever thought I had much common sense, but I think common sense told me to say it was time. It is the right time.

“Obviously I had a good time and I probably feel a bit embarrassed by all the jockeys I’ve been up against and the successes we’ve had. It’s an emotional time, but I think it’s is definitely the right time.

Roberts currently has a huge selection of runners under his care, adding: “If you included the conditionals, you would have around 47 or 48 at the moment – ​​probably a little more even. If you said 50, you’re not going to be far off. I think we tackled 69 once, which was a hell of an effort.

“I’ve always felt there’s a big void in the market for someone who wants to fill this role, as long as you’re willing to put in the hours and commit 365 days a year.”

McCoy is obviously the leading name among Roberts’ clients, with the agent firm confident that no one will rival the runner’s achievements, linking himself to a record 4,358 winners in a career that has encompassed success in virtually every major race on the National Hunt calendar.

Roberts said: “I’ve recorded many times, no disrespect to any jockey who is going up or starting to go up, but I don’t think anyone will ever hit the numbers they have. It was a very special time and a very special person and jockey that you were dealing with. It’s definitely not going to happen in my lifetime, I really don’t think so.

Unsurprisingly, Roberts identified a McCoy moment as a highlight of his long career, with the jockey’s 4,000th success aboard Mountain Tunes in Towcester on November 7, 2013 holding particular significance.

He added: “I think from a personal perspective, when Mountain Tunes won at Towcester, when AP won, that was probably the moment that meant the most to me.

“The day before my dad died and I remember going there, my son drove me there, and I went to the field to see him, like I did when he was breaking records, and he just looked at me, looked up and said “that was for your dad” and it really touched a nerve that i’ve never forgotten My dad and AP McCoy were just two of the coolest men influential in my life.

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