Category: International News

Tragedy in Pisa


Today is truly a tragic day for amateur jockeys worldwide.

In addition to the devastating loss of Keagan Kirkby at Charing point-to-point this afternoon which will be keenly felt across the point-to-point fraternity, we have also lost Dominik Pastuszka today. A friend to our amateur riders who venture abroad, Dominik was a 35-year-old Polish amateur jockey based in Italy who succumbed to his injuries following a bad fall at Pisa on Thursday.

We send our heartfelt condolences to Dominik’s family and friends and to the Italian Amateur Club on this great loss. May he Rest In Peace. 🙏🙏



Many of you are familiar with FEGENTRI which gives opportunities to amateur jockeys to enjoy race riding abroad. All travel expenses are met by the AJA and the host countries provide accommodation.

Fegentri rules now allow up to 3 of both gentleman and lady riders to represent their country and take part in the LONGINES FEGENTRI WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP FOR LADY RIDERS and the LONGINES FEGENTRI WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP FOR GENTLEMEN RIDERS. In addition there is a jump element of Fegentri – The Gentlemen’s League – which gives a few opportunities to both Gentleman and lady riders to ride over obstacles.

A main representative of each flat racing trio will be selected to compete for the title of World Champion and be solely invited if within the top rankings from 1st October until the year end.

The 2024 Fegentri General Assembly will be held in Kilkenny, Ireland on Saturday 17th February. Publication of this year’s calendar is currently awaited.

Applications are invited from amateur jockeys to take part and represent the UK abroad.

Jockeys must have ridden a minimum of 5 winners (preferably under rules but can include point-to-points) with ladies able to ride easily at 58 kg (9 stone) and gentlemen ideally at 62 kg (under 10 stone ie 9 stone 11 lbs).

Please request and return an application form by e-mail by 26th January to if you would like to apply. (This is also available on our Facebook page.) Please don’t hesitate to e-mail through any queries in the meantime. You can also visit the FEGENTRI website at

A tribute to Lorna


Lorna was blessed with a vivacious, bubbly personality and her smile always lit up the racecourse wherever she went.  Many of us are familiar with Lorna’s presence over many years not only on the racecourse but also point-to-pointing which was Lorna’s passion.  Based within the Welsh Borders, Lorna travelled far and wide.

Lorna’s first introduction to race riding abroad took place in 2010 when she accepted the AJA invitation to ride in the Anglo/Irish lady jockeys’ challenge at Limerick for Team GB with Lucy Alexander, Alex Dunn, Joanna Mason and Emma Sayer.  Lorna was a gallant 2nd to Alex’s winner that day but the return match held at Newton Abbot in 2011 saw Lorna enjoy her first winner over hurdles aboard Dashing Doc for Evan Williams winning by 9 lengths from Ireland’s Aine O’Connor with Rachael Blackmore 3rd.

One of Lorna’s most memorable wins which she saw as a highlight of her career was in 2011 at the North Shropshire point-to-point when one of her reins snapped whilst riding Kalmo Bay in the Ladies Open. Despite this, she continued to ride with only one rein, the other broken rein flapping whilst she jumped several fences before somehow retrieving it and going on to win the race! Quite some achievement and one that displayed what a superb horsewoman she was.

Lorna was selected again by the AJA to represent Great Britain at Fairyhouse in 2015 where Peter Roe’s initiative of the inaugural Ladies’ Chase enabled her to enjoy the biggest win of her career under rules.  She enjoyed a great victory for Paul Stafford aboard Moonlone Lane (winning for the first time) with the placed riders being no less than Katie Walsh (2nd), Lizzie Kelly (3rd) and Rachael Blackmore (4th).   Lorna teamed up again with the horse in his next run at Musselburgh riding against professionals to enjoy back-to-back wins.

Lorna was the perfect diplomat for racing and could always be relied upon, with her sunny nature and modest disposition.  She represented GB in Arabian racing, riding both in Bahrain and Poland in 2015 as part of the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Series and enjoyed its finale in Abu Dhabi.  She also represented GB alongside Jodie Hughes riding in Mauritius in 2018 and again in 2019 when riding on two separate occasions as part of a team of GB lady riders on the flat in Germany.  Her unfailing smile allowed Lorna to make friends wherever she went.

In 2011, following the career ending fall sustained by Champion Amateur Isabel Tompsett at Fakenham, Lorna joined forces with fellow amateur jockey Jane Williams to complete a 907 mile cycle ride from John O’Groats to Lands End in aid of the Injured Jockeys Fund.  Incredibly the pair reached their destination in only 8 and a half days with just two punctures and raised an amazing £25,000 in the process.

Lorna’s thirst for racing was unquenchable; she embodied everything there is to love about jump racing.  Lorna enjoyed 17 winners under rules over the last 20 years as well as some 40 point-to-point winners, carrying her mother’s orange and brown colours to victory many times.  Her loss is very keenly felt in the weighing room and beyond. We extend our heartfelt condolences to her family and her very many friends.  One thing is for certain and that is that Lorna will never be forgotten.

Jersey Raceclub announce 2021 race programme


Several amateur jockeys (recently Fred Tett and Serena Brotherton) enjoy considerable success in the Channel Islands each summer and we are delighted to share the newly published race programme from Jersey Raceclub for 2021 here.

These dates are subject to the Bailiff’s permission, and conditions laid out by Public Health. They have been agreed by CIHA. We wish everyone good luck at Les Landes this summer!

Friday 25th June – Warwick Vase (evening meeting)

Friday 9th July – Guineas (evening meeting)

Sunday 25th July – Bullet

Sunday 8th August – Champion Hurdle

Sunday 15th August – Ladies Day

Monday 30th August – Derby Day (bank holiday meeting)

Sunday 12th September- September meeting

Monday 27th September – Clarendon (bank holiday meeting)

Fred Tett enjoys a double in Italy


FREDDIE TETT was the man to follow at Saturday’s racemeeting at Treviso, as the British amateur jockey rode his first ever jump race double at the northern Italian course.

Whilst the rest of us are counting down the days until British amateur racing is set to restart on 29th March, nothing is stopping Fred who took himself off to take up residency in France just in time before lockdown set in. Having already enjoyed winners in France and Belgium, this afternoon Fred enjoyed his first ever career jump double, this time in Treviso, Italy over hurdles! Many congratulations to Fred on a great achievement

First up was KNAPSACK in the Premio Montebelluna hurdle race over 3000 metres. One of four runners in the race for owner-trainer Paolo Favero, Knapsack started her career in England, where she was unplaced in three races on the flat for trainer Clive Cox. However, Knapsack has adapted well to life over hurdles in Italy, winning over 3500 metres at Pisa last month. The drop down in distance didn’t inconvenience the four year old Nathaniel filly here however, as despite jumping the third last hurdle last of the five runners, Knapsack made smooth headway under Tett in the closing stages, coming home ahead of the Polish-bred pair of Bazajyd and Consensus to give owner-trainer Favero a 1-2-3 in the race.

Tett completed his double aboard another Favero-trained runner, WEST COAST TIME, who prevailed in a thrilling finish to the Premio Sant Artemio, another hurdle race over 3000 metres, where six of the eight runners looked to have chances jumping the final hurdle. However, whereas Knapsack is a regular over hurdles, West Coast Time is more at home running over extreme distances whilst negotiating cross country obstacles, highlighted by his third place finish in a Group 2 cross country chase at Merano over 6000 metres back in September. However, despite running over half that distance here, West Coast Time, formerly trained in Ireland by Joseph O’Brien before joining current connections in November 2019, belied odds of 15.5-1, getting the better of stablemate Padrinho, with the German-bred grey Salem Aleikum back in third.

Pat Millman wins for UK in USA


What a dramatic weekend in the USA with racing cancelled at both Parx (Philadelphia) and Laurel Park due to 38C heat! Thanks to some serious hard work and cooler temperatures (32 degrees!), Parx was rescheduled for today Monday (original plans having been for Delaware) and news is just in that its a WINNER for GB! 

Many congratulations to Pat Millman on a great ride to fly at the finish and get up on the line in a three horse photo! 

Well done Pat and massive thanks to Don Yovanovich for all of his dedication and hard work to make this raceday happen in the most difficult of circumstances.🥂🇬🇧🥂🇺🇸🥂❤️

Aly Deniel wins in Bucharest


Alyson Deniel is no stranger to winning on Arabian horses internationally, having enjoyed success in the second race of 2014 of the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship held at Caulfield Racecourse, Melbourne, Australia (below).

A bit closer to home, another winning ride was enjoyed by Aly recently when representing the UK in Romania on 6th July at the Hippodrome Ploiesti near Bucharest.

Many congratulations to Aly who now looks forward to the finale to be held in Abu Dhabi on 24th November, when all winning riders will participate.

Many thanks to Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival, Chairperson of the International Federation of Horse Racing Academies (IFHRA), Chairperson of Ladies & Apprentice Racing Committees in the International Federation of Arabian Horse Racing Authorities (IFAHR), for giving our lady riders such unique opportunities

Craig Dowson wins in Oman


The first of the gentleman’s Fegentri races took place today in Oman with GB represented by team member Will Pettis. An additional place became available for a non-team member and Craig Dowson, better known as a jump and point-to-point jockey, made the most of it by enjoying a winning ride! Many congratulations to Craig on making our return to Fegentri a winning one!

Craig Dowson (orange colours) and GB representative Will Pettis

Fegentri line up GB 2019!


The AJA are delighted to announce our teams of Fegentri riders for 2019 as follows:

Longines Fegentri World Championship for Gentlemen Riders (Flat): William Easterby, James Harding, Pat Millman, Will Pettis and David Prichard

Longines Fegentri World Championship for Lady Riders (Flat): Carol Bartley, Serena Brotherton, Jessica Gillam, Antonia Peck and Hannah Welch

The gentlemen have plenty to look forward to with trips to be shared between all 5 of them to Oman, Germany, Spain, Sweden, France, and Italy * whilst the girls also have much to be excited about with trips to be shared to Oman, Switzerland, Martinique, Germany, France, Norway, Italy, Sweden, Czech Republic, Belgium, Turkey, Austria and Mauritius *.

* subject to invitation

With our return to membership of Fegentri for 2019, we are also delighted to announce that we will be supporting the Gentleman’s League (Jump) this year which comes under the Fegentri umbrella and that David Prichard will be our representative.

The Gentleman’s League calendar for 2019 includes:

21st March Cork, Ireland  
19th May Auteuil, France 
30th May Le Lion d’Angers, France 
27th August Waregem, Belgium
28th Sept Merano, Italy
13th Oct Pardubice, Czech Republic
8th Nov Compienge, France 

There is also a point-to-point at Chateau Gonthier in France on 4th May so plenty of fun to be had!

If YOU would like to represent UK and ride abroad but have not necessarily had the requisite 5 wins for Fegentri and/or struggle to do 9 stone (girls) or under 10 stone (lads) then please e-mail for any other international trips which crop up from time to time so that your name can be added to the list of interested jockeys. If you cannot commit to the whole series, it would still be useful to know if you may be interested in an occasional ride abroad. Please note: Lady jockeys can also apply for the Gentleman’s League!

Good luck to all of Team GB for a great Fegentri 2019!✈️🏇🍀😎

Tabitha Worsley brings home the trophy for GB


Whilst we all await the annual 🇮🇪Irish🇮🇪 invasion to Cheltenham it was brilliant to have a small invasion of our own 🇬🇧British🇬🇧 team Zac Baker, Alex Edwards, Brodie Hampson and Tabitha Worsley flying over to Fairyhouse for the inaugural Anglo/Irish Challenge Chase on 13th February and taking on the formidable Irish team on their own turf headed by Patrick Mullins, Derek O’Connor, Aine O’Connor and Lisa O’Neill.

13 went to post and ultimately half of each team did not complete, with GB’s Alex unseated and Zac pulling up, whilst Aine and Patrick were also PU. Sadly we did not have a team member in the winner’s enclosure but Tabitha had a great spin for Gordon Elliott on KAYR THOU to finish 3rd, bringing home the trophy for GB, with Lisa and Derek 4th and 5th respectively and Brodie 6th.

We really appreciate these international invitation races which give unique race riding opportunities to our members and huge thanks must go again to Fairyhouse’s Peter Roe for his kindness as well as Susan Leahy for her support, with the re-run in 2020 already eagerly awaited!🏇🍀🏇🍀🏇🍀