Updated: Tuesday, 31 Dec 2013 18:36 | Comments
Gigginstown House Stud have jettisoned champion jockey Davy Russell as their number one rider.
The Youghal man, who racked up his 1000th career win on board Sea Light at Leopardstown on St Stephen’s Day, has been a linchpin in the success of leading owner Michael O’Leary’s Gigginstown owning and breeding operation for several seasons.
Russell made his name in the point-to-point sphere before making the switch to racing under Rules. A move to Ferdy Murphy’s yard in England to replace the recently-retired Adrian Maguire in 2002 saw his fledgling career hit new heights, with big-race success on the likes of Truckers Tavern, Tribal Venture, Historg and Ballinclay King.
Having returned to Ireland in 2004, Russell’s progression up the ranks culminated in a first champion jockey title in the 2011-2012 season.
Weapon’s Amnesty, First Lieutenant, Quito De La Roque and Sir Des Champs have provided the 34-year-old with major wins for his main employer in recent seasons.
Russell’s most recent Grade One success for Gigginstown came on the Gordon Elliott-trained Don Cossack in the Drinmore Chase at Fairyhouse at the beginning of December.
His final mounts as Gigginstown’s top jock will come at Tramore on New Year’s Day, where he partners Enjoy Responsibility, Express Du Berlais and Roi Du Mee.
The highly-rated Bryan Cooper has been widely tipped to succeed Russell.