Barry Geraghty Retirement - Aidan Coleman 11/10 to be JP McManus' new main man
- Barry Geraghty announced he was to retire from riding this weekend
- The multiple Grade One winner has called time on his career at the age of 40
- Markets have now opened to see who will replace Geraghty as JP McManus' retained jockey in Britian
- Aidan Coleman is the 11/10 favourite with Ladbrokes
Aidan Coleman riding Epatante to victory at Newbury in the colours of JP McManus. (Getty)
Barry Geraghty announced his immediate retirement in a shock announcement this weekend, and Aidan Coleman is the short-priced favourite to replace him as JP McManus retained jockey.
Geraghty took the world of jump's racing by surprise this weekend, when he announced he was to retire with immediate effect.
The 40-year-old enjoyed an excellent Cheltenham Festival, winning the Champion Hurdle on Epatante. Geraghty has, however, struggled with injury troubles over the last 18 months, and the former Gold Cup and Grand National winner has decided the time is right to bring his glittering career in the saddle to an end.
"I’m 41 in September and you can’t go on forever." Geraghty wrote in his blog with Sporting Index on Sunday. "I’ve missed 18 months of the last five years through injury, having broken both legs, both arms, my ribs, shoulder blade and a few other small fractures in between."
"My last injury, the leg break on the eve of the 2019 Grand National at Aintree, was a real test and hard to take, it made me appreciate the importance of getting back into a scenario where I could go out on my own terms rather than being stretchered off."
"It’s not easy to come back from those injuries, but I knew that if I could I had a chance of going out on my own terms, so I discussed it with my wife, Paula, and put that plan in my head early last season."
"I knew going into Cheltenham that it was going to be my last one, and that’s probably why I showed more emotion at the meeting than I had done in donkey’s years. I needed to get a winner badly and Epatante gave me the dream start in the Champion Hurdle."
"We considered calling it a day then, but I would have been sick to be on the sidelines if Aintree, Fairyhouse or Punchestown went ahead."
"Then to go on and ride winners for the boss (JP McManus) on Dame De Compagnie, Champ, Sire Du Berlais, and being able to make my last ever ride at a Cheltenham Festival a winning one, with Saint Roi in the County Hurdle, I couldn’t have asked to sign off on a better note."
Attention now turns to who will succeed Barry Geraghty as JP McManus' retained jockey in England, and Aidan Coleman has been chalked up as the early favourite by bookmakers Ladbrokes.
Coleman has already enjoyed high-profile success in the famous green and gold silks aboard the likes of Epatante and Champ in recent seasons, and he's been installed as the 11/10 favourite.
“There are plenty of names in contention for one of the biggest jobs in racing," said Ladbrokes' Nicola McGeady. "Although Aidan Coleman is the early favourite, we wouldn’t be surprised to see money for the likes of Nico De Boinville who ticks a lot of boxes for the job.”
Mark Walsh already rides on a regular basis for McManus in Ireland, and he will likely take up the top job in his home country.
Jonjo O'Neill Jnr guided McManus' Early Doors to victory in the 2019 Martin Pipe, his first victory at the Cheltenham Festival. The 21-year-old is also in line to take McManus' lead rider role in Britain, along with multiple Grade One-winning jockey Nico De Boinville, who's been described as the "perfect fit" for the job in some circles.
Others in the running for this coveted position are Richard Johnson, despite his advancing years, Richie McLernon and current British Champion Jockey, Brian Hughes.
*Next UK retained rider for JP McManus Ladbrokes*
11/10 Aidan Coleman, 3/1 Jonjo O’Neill Jnr, 7/2 Mark Walsh, 7/2 Nico De Boinville, 16/1 Richard Johnson, 33/1 Richie McLernon, 33/1 Brian Hughes