Top jump jockey Jim Culloty, 31, has decided to hang up his racing boots after a hugely successful career, during which he partnered Best Mate to all three of his historic Gold Cup victories. His major wins also include the 2002 Grand National on Bindaree.

The jockey’s decision is understood to be due to health reasons. Culloty recently became a father for the first-time and has bought a farm in County Cork. His retirement has lead to extensive speculation about who will partner Best Mate when he returns to the track later this year.

A good week for

George Duffield, who received the Goodwood Lifetime Achievement award for 2005 from the Duke of Richmond at a lunch in London. The now-retired jockey has wins in the Sussex and Nassau Stakes to his name, so the recognition was well deserved.

But a bad week for

The British Horseracing Board (BHB), which has confirmed that it will not be appealing against the Court of Appeal’s decision to rule in favour of William Hill in the four-year saga surrounding a dispute about data rights. In a statement, The BHB has said it wishes to draw a line under the case and will be now be reviewing its future strategy.

Support for racing employees

The National Trainers’ Federation and the Stable Lads’ Association is looking to stamp out bullying and harassment on racing yards with the introduction of a joint agreement to tackle the problem. All training yards will receive a copy of the agreement, which covers all employees.

In addition, Racing Welfare and the Samaritans have launched a 24-hour telephone helpline for distressed stable employees, part-funded by the Racehorse Owners’ Association. The Samaritans organisation also hopes to offer management training to racing employers who are struggling with the pressure of personnel issues.

Chris Kinane trust fund

Racehorse owners are being asked to donate to the trust fund, set up to help severely injured assistant trainer Chris Kinane. The money will be used to provide him with the best medical attention during his slow recovery and help fund his rehabilitation. Full details of how to make a donation to the fund can be found at: www.chriskinanetrust.org

Racing hits the spot

Crowds in Britain are hitting new modern-day highs and a record crowd of 47,000 for the Irish Derby festival at The Curragh and a generally well-attended June boosted crowds there too, following a small decline in attendances compared with last year. It’s a long time since racing has been as popular with the public on both sides of the Irish Sea.

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