'He's Had An Amazing Career' – Bolger Salutes Manning Upon His Retirement

Vocal Studies: Kevin Manning's final winner | Racingfotos

Jim Bolger has offered up a glowing tribute to multiple Group 1 and Classic-winning stable jockey Kevin Manning, who at the age of 55, announced his retirement from the saddle after riding a winner for his legendary father-in-law at Galway. 

Manning joined Bolger in 1978. Together, they won the Derby with New Approach (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), the Irish Derby with Trading Leather (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}) and came within a whisker of completing the 1,000 Guineas treble with Finsceal Beo (Ire) (Mr Greeley), who went out on her shield at Longchamp in 2007 following her Curragh and Newmarket triumphs.

The pair recorded their second 2,000 Guineas victory, eight years after bagging their first with Dawn Approach (Ire) (New Approach {Ire}), just over 12 months ago courtesy of Poetic Flare (Ire) (Dawn Approach {Ire}) but Bolger described himself as delighted to see Manning get out of the game in one piece shortly after he partnered the stable's 4-6 favourite Vocal Studies (Ire) (Vocalised) to victory on Monday. 

Bolger said, “Kevin has had an amazing career with 1,700 winners or thereabouts. We've had a great time and it had to end at some stage. Thankfully, he's getting out in one piece and on his own terms. I'm sure he will be very happy from here. I knew it wouldn't go on forever and I'm delighted that he's going out on his own terms and going out on a winner.”

Bolger put forward Teofilo (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), New Approach and Trading Leather as “the big three” when asked to list the highlights of a trainer-rider relationship that has lasted over 40 years. 

He said, “The highlights, with all the Group 1 wins and Classic victories, were great and we enjoyed them thoroughly. The first big one that meant so much for us would have been Teofilo in the Dewhurst. 

“He was the first of five Dewhurst winners for us and it was made extra special for the fact that he was a homebred. Teofilo was also the first of three champion two-year-olds for us so he was an extremely special horse for Kevin and I.”

Bolger added, “Trading Leather winning the Irish Derby and of course New Approach winning the Derby at Epsom were excellent days also. So Teofilo, Trading Leather and New Approach, they were the big three. 

“We had lots of other great days on the track together and winning the Hong Kong Cup with Alexander Goldrun (Ire) (Gold Away {Ire}) in 2005 was very special. I think Kevin joined me in 1978 so he's been here a very long time–I don't think he was quite 15 when he joined us!” 

Manning was twice crowned champion apprentice in Ireland before being announced as Bolger's stable jockey in 1993. It didn't take long for the pair to enjoy top-flight success as Eva Luna (Ire) (Double Schwartz {GB}) landed the 1994 Phoenix S. the following year. 

He rode his first Classic winner aboard Bolger's Margarula (Ire) (Doyoun {GB}) in the 2002 Irish Oaks and Alexander Goldrun was the first household name he was associated with. 

Manning, who is married to Bolger's daughter Una, with whom he has two children, said on Monday, “I have been very lucky to ride some very good horses along the way and owe Jim and Jackie everything.

“I was suspended for this weekend, which is the end of the grass season, and I had some good rides today and said to myself it is time to call it quits if one of these wins.”

 

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