Uttoxeter races will mark the retirement of Cheltenham Gold Cup winning jockey

TOMORROW’S (Wednesday, June 6) Uttoxeter race meeting will mark the retirement of past Cheltenham Gold Cup-winning  jockey Andrew Thornton.

The County Durham-born 45 year old, who has four rides at the East Staffordshire course, is one of only a handful of National Hunt jockeys to have ridden 1,000 winners.

Thornton rode his first winner, the Arthur Stephenson-trained Wrekin Hill, at Sedgefield, in November 1991.

One of many highlights of Thornton’s riding career, which has spanned 27 years, was winning the 1998 Cheltenham Gold Cup on the legendary Cool Dawn.

In recent years Thornton has struggled with injuries – including one sustained on dismounting his 1000th winner, the Seamus Mullins-trained Kentford Myth, at Wicanton, on Boxing Day 2016.

“Father Time is catching me up and I’d like to do it on my own terms,” said Thornton (pictured), who lives with his family in North Yorkshire.

Uttoxeter’s eight-race card starts at 1.40pm.

Staffordshire Moorlands trainer Jennie Candlish has a number of horses entered at the race meeting.