Ray Cochrane
8st 4 lbs--52.5 kgs
It was with much sadness that we learnt of Ray's retirement on November 6th, 2000, due to injuries sustained that year.

Ray had been one of the senior jockeys in the UK and is very popular with many trainers across the country.

He was also voted Channel 4 TV Racing Personality of the Year in 2000.

The plane accident demonstrated the type of person he is & bonded him even closer to his pal, Frankie Dettori.

Although riding as a freelance, the trainers who most used him were Fanshawe, Balding, Cumani & Vic Soane.

Increasing weight forced him to start riding over jumps where he rode 9 winners over hurdles.
However, injuries from a fall caused him to shed the weight again and he resumed his riding career with Ron Sheather in 1979.

Horses are handicapped and so to it seems are jockeys. Since 1992, Ray finished 1st five times in the annual jockeys table compiled by computer racing expert, John Whiteley.

In late June, 2002, Ray felt compelled to take Godolphin Ltd. to court to seek damages for the injuries he received in the plane crash and for the subsequent lost future career earnings. Let us all hope that a mutually beneficial arrangement can be found for all parties.

  • Date of Birth :18.06.57
  • Born: Ulster.
  • Weight: 8st 4 lbs---52.5kgs
  • Apprenticeship: Barry Hills
  • 1st win: Romany Way, Windsor, 01.08.74
  • Career Winners 1974--2000: around 1,600
  • Centuries in a season: 7
  • Group Winners: Over 81 Group Race wins to date


  • Luca Cumani: 1987
  • Guy Harwood: 1990
  • Luca Cumani: 1993

    1,000 Guineas--Midway Lady, 1986
    Oaks---Midway Lady, 1986
    Derby---Kahyasi, 1988
    Irish Derby--Kahyasi, 1988
    Irish 1,000 Guineas: Ensconse, 1989
    French 1,000 Guineas: Valentine Waltz, 1999

    St.James's Palace Stakes--Chief Singer 1984, Half a Year 1987
    July Cup--Chief Singer 1984 & Polish Patriot 1989
    Coronation Cup---Sherrif's Star 1989
    Sussex Stakes--Chief Singer 1984
    Yorkshire Oaks---Only Royale 1993
    Champion Stakes--Legal Case 1989
    Lockinge Stakes--Selkirk 1992
    QEII Stakes--Selkirk 1991
    Prix de L'Abbaye--My Best Valentine 1998
    Cualfield Cup--Taufan's Melody 1998 and
    Middle Park Stakes
    Coronation Cup
    Heinz 57 (twice)
    Rothman's International
    E.P.Taylor Stakes
    Turf Classic
    Presidente de la Republica
    Gobierno Vasco.

    Ray rode 81 Group 1 Winners in the UK, France, Ireland, US, Canada, Australia, Italy & Spain and participated in a Jockeys' Challenge in Barbados in the early 1990's.

    Career UK wins from 1986:

  • 1986: 89
  • 1987: 111 (3rd)
  • 1988: 120
  • 1989: 120
  • 1990: 110
  • 1991: 102
  • 1992: 100
  • 1993: 83
  • 1994: 79
  • 1995: 104
  • 1996: 86
  • 1997: 53
  • 1998: 59
  • 1999: 67
  • 2000: 30

    and 9 hurdle race wins !

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    Dettori vs Piggott - who would have won? A recent video released in 2000 Frankie Dettori's Magnificent Feat of Riding 7 winners through the card at Ascot--Re-live the moments with him A great video detailing Lester's 30 Classic winners in the UK, his career and an interview with Sir Peter O'Sullevan.
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