Top jockey rides high after donor op
11:00am Monday 16th April 2012 in News
FORMER jockey Richard Pitman was thrilled to be back in the saddle at Aintree just 10 weeks after having an operation to donate a kidney to a stranger.
The BBC racing presenter, 69, who lives at Letcombe Regis, near Wantage, finished 10th of the 12 runners on Millers Reef, trained by Jamie Snowden at Lambourn, in the John Smith’s Aintree Legends Charity Race.
Pitman, who rode 470 winners and famously finished second on Crisp to Red Rum in the 1973 Grand National, said: “I loved it – just not fast enough.
“The doctor told me that because I am a geriatric to go on the outside at the back.
“I was pretty agricultural, but it was good fun.”
The race, in aid of the Bob Champion Cancer Trust, was won by Mick Kinane, the 13-time Irish Flat racing champion jockey on American Trilogy, trained by Paul Nicholls, who later claimed John Smith's Grand National glory with Neptune Collonges.
Marcus Armytage, who lives in Faringdon, was third on Cape Express, while Pitman’s Letcombe Regis neighbour, Graham Thorner, was 11th on Private Story.