Sir AP McCoy has taken up his first official appointment with an equine charity, becoming a patron of Retraining of Racehorses (RoR).
The 20-time champion jockey joins fellow Channel 4 Racing presenter Clare Balding as one of two RoR patrons.
In January AP, who retired from the saddle last April, was made president of H
orse & Hound’s charity of the year, the Injured Jockeys’ Fund.
“As I said on my retirement, I rode in nearly 18,000 races and I owe a debt to all the horses I rode, as without them none of my success would have been possible,” said AP.
“So I am delighted to be in a position where I can assist in promoting the increasingly varied options available for racehorses after racing.”
Paul Roy, chairman of RoR said AP was “an inspiration to so many and a wonderful ambassador for horseracing.”
AP is joining the charity at a time when it is undergoing “a period of sustained growth.”
There are now 11,500 horses on the RoR’s database registered as active in equine disciplines outside of racing.
“With increasing levels of participation in RoR classes and activities, we are investing more and more into education and training programmes to match the demand among owners for taking on former racehorses,” said Mr Roy.
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He said the popularity of RoR classes has not “led to any complacency” about the charity’s commitment to look after vulnerable horses.
“We continue to work with and fund RoR recognised centres so they can take-in and re-home vulnerable horses and the collaborative pilot scheme introduced with World Horse Welfare in 2015 has been a success and will be extended,” added Mr Roy.
Fundraising was boosted earlier this week (4 April) when singer Jess Glynne said she will be making a donation to RoR from her performances at four Jockey Club Live race nights this summer.