What does it take to be a champion jockey? Desire, dedication, determination, concentration and the will to win, that is undoubtedly something that 40-year-old Richard Johnston has in abundance.
Johnston is the perfect ambassador of horse racing with his hardworking ethics and his talent in the saddle, both of which have seen him winning victorious in the Cheltenham Gold Cup recently, adding to his already astonishing portfolio.
We really had the pleasure of an exclusive interview with Richard Johnston, as the hectic national hunt season nearly comes to a close although Johnston isn’t taking his foot off the pedal and he already has his eyes set on next seasons campaign for him to retain his champion jockey crown.
How did you get into racing?
My family always had horses on the farm and my dad rode as an amateur, so that certainly swayed me into the direction of being a jockey.
If you went a jockey, what would you have been?
I’d say something down the farming route, would have been next on the list.
What was it like winning the Gold cup?
I honestly can’t describe it just the best feeling that I ever experienced, it made all the hard work that I put in worthwhile.
Through the big race, how were you feeling?
I was happy throughout the in the race, as he was not being taken on, so my mount Native River, was always in his comfort zone and fortunately he stayed in the strongest for the victory.
Give us a horse to keep an eye out for?
Village Vic is a horse I personally think plenty of.
What is it like to be champion jockey?
It is always so hard to become champion jockey as there are so many great jockeys out there, I’m very lucky to have so much good support to help me try to keep hold of the title for as long as possible.
What jockey do you look up to?
It would have to be Noel Fehily, as he is a brilliant jockey and he always has a very cool head in the saddle.
Outside racing, how do relax?
Spending as much time with my family is my top priority, as whenever I am not racing I try to spend as much time as I possible can with them.
How do you deal with internet trolling?
It’s never nice if someone says something bad about you, but when you’re doing a sport in public, unfortunately it happens. You have to just try your best and ignore them.