Thierry Jarnet, rider of Treve, announces retirement from the saddle

Fri 24 Feb 2017

Veteran French jockey Thierry Jarnet, best known in recent years as the rider of the brilliant mare Treve, has announced his retirement from the saddle.

The 49-year-old steered the Criquette Head-Maarek-trained Treve to eight of her nine career victories, including successive triumphs in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp in 2013 and 2014.

Jarnet told Press Association Sport: "I'm not going to be riding this season, I have had to finish. I've had a problem with my leg.I've no plans to start training, I don't know what I'll do yet."

He added: "I rode many good horses for Andre Fabre - Pennekamp, Subotica and lots of good fillies.

"Recently I've had Moonlight Cloud, and, of course, Treve. She would have to be the best of them all."

Head-Maarek admitted to being surprised when Jarnet gave her the news on Friday morning.

"Thierry came to the stables this morning to tell me he he was retiring and I am a little bit sad as we've had so many great days together," said the Chantilly-based trainer.

"It's Thierry's decision and it happens to us all, I suppose. We can't go on forever and I think he is 50 this year.

"Obviously we had some fantastic times with Treve - the second Arc was fantastic - but there were a lot of other good horses as well.

"He's ridden for me for many years."

On future riding arrangements, Head-Maarek added: "I have nothing in mind at the moment. I only got the news myself his morning.

"Hopefully, if he is available, (Pierre-Charles) Boudot will ride my Group One winner National Defense. The plan is for him to run in the Prix Djebel and we will see where we go from there."

For much of the 1990s, Jarnet rode principally for Fabre and was crowned champion jockey in his homeland on four occasions.

Fabre provided Jarnet with his first Group One success when Subotica claimed the 1991 Grand Prix de Paris. The same combination went on to win the following year's Arc and the Prix Ganay.

The pair also teamed up with the likes of Intrepidity and Pennekamp, with the latter winning both the Dewhurst and the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket, where he beat Celtic Swing.

Fabre said: "He was a great jockey, top class, but the main thing he was a gentleman.He was quite fit for his age so I'm surprised at this (news).

"We enjoyed good days together, Pennekamp winning the Guineas was one of the best.

"He's probably got something different lined up, but I must say I'm surprised."

Jarnet had a successful partnership with trainer Freddy Head, brother of Criquette, most notably with We Are, Charm Spirit and six-time Group One winner Moonlight Cloud.

Head said: "He came to tell me he was retiring this morning. He said he couldn't go on because of his knee problem.It's a sad day for racing. Thierry is a great jockey, very well balanced and pure class.

"He was great on Moonlight Cloud. She was a very good filly, but also very special and I would say Thierry changed her career."

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