Can jockeys still remount?

Can jockeys still remount? Historically, jockeys could, and frequently did, remount horses that fell, unseated rider or refused during races, in order to complete the course and collect prize money. Sir Anthony McCoy, for example, famously remounted odds-on favourite, Family Business, to finish alone and win a race at Southwell in January, 2003, in which all seven starters failed to complete the course unscathed.

However, since November, 2009, when the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) introduced new safety rules, jockeys are not allowed to remount horses after the start of a race. Jockeys may remount, with the permission of the racecourse doctor or veterinary surgery, if they are unseated during the preliminaries but, once the race is underway, may only remount, with permission, for the purpose of riding back to the unsaddling enclosure.

Of course, the rule change introduced the possibility of races being declared void in the event of no finishers. Indeed, that eventually famously happened for the first time in a novices’ chase at Towcester in March, 2011; two of four the runners fell at one fence early on in the race and, at the same fence on the second circuit, the favourite refused and unseated his rider, hampering the only remaining runner so badly that he, too, unseated his rider.

Which is the oldest of the five English Classics?

Which is the oldest of the five English Classics? The five English Classics are, of course, the 2,000 Guineas Stakes, the 1,000 Guineas Stakes, the Oaks Stakes, the Derby Stakes and the St. Leger Stakes. At least, that is the order in which the Classics are run in the modern racing calendar, but they all came into existence at slightly different times.

Indeed, the St. Leger Stakes, which is run over 1 mile 6 furlongs at Doncaster in September, may be the final Classic of the season, but was, in fact, the first to be inaugurated. The brainchild of Major General Anthony St. Leger, a local army officer and politician, the St. Leger Stakes was first run, as ‘a sweepstake of 25 guineas’, on Cantley Common in 1776, before moving to Town Moor two years later.

Next, chronologically, came the Oaks Stakes, devised by Edward Smith-Stanley, 12th Earl of Derby and friends, and first run on Epsom Downs in 1779. The Derby Stakes, co-founded by Smith-Stanley and his friend, Sir Charles Bunbury – who, according to legend, tossed a coin to decide after which of them the race was named – followed a year later. Decades later, in his capacity as Jockey Club Steward, Sir Charles Bunbury was also responsible for establishing the 2,000 Guineas, first run at Newmarket in 1809, and the 1,000 Guineas, five years later.

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