JOE Tizzard has announced his immediate retirement from the saddle, believing it is “time to move on”.
The jockey, based at his father Colin’s stables in Milborne Port,,who sprang to fame in the late 1990s through his association with Paul Nicholls, had been scheduled to be in action at New-bury on Friday for two rides.
However, he decided in the morning he was not going to take up those mounts and called it a day.
The Grade One-winning rider, famed in recent seasons for his association with the top-class Cue Card, has had just 11 winners this season.
The 34-year-old’s last four Grade One wins all came via his father Colin’s best ever horse, with Cue Card announcing his arrival on the big stage in the 2010 Champion Bumper.
Tizzard told Racing UK: “As a jockey I think you know when the time’s up. I’ve had less and less rides over the last few seasons, and less winners.
We’ve got two big operations at home, with the racing and the farming. I’ve done my time as a jockey, I’ve had a fabulous time of it, but it’s time to move on.
“It’s already sunk in for me and I’m happy with the decision I’ve made.
“Dad was fine. First of all he said he’d booked me for six rides over the weekend and would have to find somebody else, but he thinks I’ve made the right decision and he’s now got to put up with me even more as I’ll be on top of him at home.
“Right from a very young age I wanted to be a jockey and I owe a huge thank you to Paul Nicholls.
“He was the first person when I was 16 to come and offer me a job at Wincanton one night.
“He pushed me to turn professional, I never looked back and I rode hundreds of winners for him on some serious horses.”
Last season Cue Card won the Betfair Ascot Chase in February and followed up in impressive fashion at the Cheltenham Fest-ival in the Ryanair Chase.
Victorious in the Betfair Chase at Haydock in November last year, he looked certain to win the King George on Boxing Day but Cue Card got tired close to home and was then denied the chance to run in the Gold Cup by injury.
Tizzard went on: “Cue Card is only a young horse and he’s got plenty of time left in him.
“It would have been lovely to have had him in the Gold Cup, but it wasn't to be.
“He was an absolute pleasure. I ride him a lot at home and I’m the only person to have ridden him on the racecourse. He was brilliant to me and kept me going.
“Every time I was having a bad patch, he would go and run a blinder and win something and everything was brilliant again.
Tizzard senior said: “He just decided on Friday that he was going to stop. We’ve got a lot of horses in and that’s his future.
“Everyone has been waiting for it for a long time and when you start thinking about stopping, you've just got to stop.”