Cheltenham 2023 Top Jockeys
Jump-racing jockeys are a rare breed. These brave souls, who show no signs of fear as they navigate obstacles at high speeds, possess a unique mix of brains and brawn, not seen in any other sport.
With the Cheltenham Festival now growing ever closer, the best equine pilots in the business are readying themselves for the biggest four days of their season, so let’s take a look at some of the high-profile jockeys that will be on show in 2023.
Made to wait for his big chance after being backup jockey to Ruby Walsh, Paul Townend is now reaping the rewards for his patience. Since Walsh’s retirement, Townend has won pretty much every big race that there is to win in the sport and will be fancying his chances of winning his third top jockey award in four years this year.
As you will see with most of this year’s horse racing tips, Townend will be on board a plethora of favourites throughout the week, including 7/4 Gold Cup market leader, Galopin Des Champs. With the likes of Energumene, Lossiemouth, and Facile Vega, also amongst his book of rides, another fantastic festival awaits Willie Mullins’ stable jockey.
Nico de Boinville
With Champion Hurdle banker, Constitution Hill, and the rejuvenated Shiskin among Nico de Boinville’s festival rides, the English jockey is another set to have a stellar time of it at Cheltenham.
Number one rider for trainer Nicky Henderson, de Boinville continues to show that he belongs at the top table of the weighing room, and will be hoping to grab the second Cheltenham top jockey award of his career.
The Queen of the jockey world, Rachael Blackmore will be hoping to emulate her past two performances at the festival. Crowned top jockey in 2021, Blackmore can look forward to continuing her high-profile partnerships with the likes of Honeysuckle and defending Gold Cup champion, A Plus Tard, although both horses have questions to be answered this year.
A lot will depend on the well-being of trainer, Henry de Bromhead’s team of horses if the leading lady rider is to enjoy more memorable moments at the festival, but if they do fail to fire, it won’t be for lack of effort in the saddle.
ðŸ™Œ Unibet Champion Hurdle – Honeysuckle @rachaelblackmor
— CheltenhamRacecourse (@CheltenhamRaces) March 21, 2022
Davy Russell is a legend of the saddle and has had a special affinity with the Cheltenham Festival throughout his career. Russell is known as a jockey that rides the Cheltenham track better than most and has consistently had winners in some of the biggest races of the week.
It has been an interesting lead-up to the 2023 festival for the 43-year-old. The Irishman announced his retirement earlier in the year, but just two weeks later he was coaxed back to action by trainer, and good friend, Gordon Elliott.
Elliott was quick to call on the experience of Russell, who will now ride the likes of, Mighty Potter, Gerri Colombe, Delta Work, Conflated, and many more at Cheltenham 2023.
It promises to be another blockbuster year at the Cheltenham Festival in 2023. Many racehorse rivalries will continue, but there will also be many battles between jockeys as they look to join an elite group of top jockeys at the meeting.