Recently-retired Brian Harding stole the show as he drove Off Art (5-1) home to take glory in the Clipper Logistics Leger Legends Classified Stakes at Doncaster racecourse.
Harding, who retired from the saddle in April, persisted with Tim Easterby’s seven-year-old despite being off the bridle a fair way from home.
Easterby’s gelding stuck to the task well to record his first win since 2013. Fire Palace (10-1) and Adrian Nicholls followed him home in second with Character Onesie (9-2J) and Ian Mongan in third.
Harding said: “That was hard work but it was good fun! I ride out three or four horses every day who are breakers (being broken in) but then you come and do this? I thought, ‘Oh my God.’ No, it was good fun really.
“I am 45 in two weeks’ time and I left home when I was 15. So I was a jockey for almost 30 years. It just takes a little getting away from. But I do the jockey coaching job and that keeps me a bit involved. Jamie Gormley is one of mine and he is a good lad and there are some cracking good jump lads too.”
Easterby added: “It’s a wonderful race to be involved in, it’s such a big day for racing. A lot of money is raised for charities that need it. Once racing stops, for a lot of these guys riding and working in the industry, things can happen and they need support.
“Brian’s ridden plenty for me over the years so it was great to have him. A brilliant solid jockey who always gave a horse a good ride. You never had any problems with him and you didn’t have to give him orders!
“I’d like him to come and school some for us that’s for sure!”