TOP jockey Adam Kirby has split from long-time ally Clive Cox.
And the Derby-winning rider admitted issues with his weight could force him into an early retirement.
PAAdam Kirby won the Derby on Adayar at Epsom in 2021[/caption]
Kirby, 34, enjoyed his greatest day in the saddle just two years ago when winning at Epsom on Adayar.
But he has had just 66 rides and five winners this year – down from nearly 600 rides in that memorable 2021 season.
At 5’11, he is taller than the average jockey and has battled the scales throughout his successful career.
He has found life especially tough since saunas were removed from racecourses.
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And the jockeys’ weight allowance, which was introduced during Covid as a substitute for saunas to give jockeys a little extra leeway, was last year cut in half.
Asked if he saw himself riding this time next year, he said: “We’ll see how we go.”
He recently started up his own pre-training business near Newmarket at Vicarage Farm, where he helps to prepare yearlings before they go into full training.
That venture, combined with his ongoing weight issues, led to an amicable parting of the ways between him and Cox.
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They have enjoyed some of their biggest ever wins together, including the July Cup with Harry Angel and Prince Of Wales’s Stakes with My Dream Boat.
Kirby, who has two rides at Ascot on Saturday, said: “I’ve had a lot of success over the years with Clive and we are still very friendly.
“I’d ideally like to be riding four or five a day with the chance of getting on a couple of good ones.
“But unless the allowance situation changes it’s going to be hard for me, and Clive has got to support the jockeys who are putting in the work down there.
“There is no point driving down to his yard to ride work, because I’m not able to do the weight to ride most of them at the races.
“You can’t punish yourself and your body to ride horses, so my hands are tied so to speak.”
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