The nine-time Irish champion jockey and 12-time European Classic winner Pat Smullen has died in hospital in Dublin having learned he had pancreatic cancer for a second time last year
The Racing Post broke the sad news on social media this evening, tweeting: « The Racing Post is sad to report that nine-time Irish champion jockey and 12-time European Classic winner Pat Smullen has died at the age of 43.
« Smullen was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in March 2018 and had suffered a relapse in recent months.
Arguably the peak of his career came back in 2016 when he road Harzand in the 2016 Investec Derby at Epsom.
Smullen decided to hang up his boots when he realised he could no longer get down to riding weight while fighting off the cancer.
“I started to gain weight, which is very, very important with what I have, to fight and keep my immune system strong, » he told The Sun last year.
« The realisation came on me, how could I go back to punishing my body to get down to a riding weight that’s sustainable to make a living out of it, after all the work the surgeon had done, he stood over me for seven hours, and the recovery, I’m thankful to all the nurses and oncologists, everybody, so I just said, I can’t do that.”
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