Report: Peslier, winner of 4 Arcs & Breeders’ Cups, is retiring

Report: Peslier, winner of 4 Arcs & Breeders’ Cups, is retiring

Olivier Peslier, a four-time winner of the Group 1 Prix de l’Arc
de Triomphe who rode Goldikova to a three-peat in the Breeders’ Cup Mile, said
he will retire after riding in two races in his native France on Thursday, Racing
reported Tuesday.

“Like everyone, my turn has arrived,” Peslier, 51, told writer
Scott Burton. “I’m a tiny bit younger than (Frankie) Dettori, and I’ll be
stopping just before him. It’s been an extraordinary career, and I would hope I
can say it’s been an exemplary one.”

With more than 3,700 wins, including 165 in Grade and Group
1 stakes, Peslier set the standard for his generation of riders in France,
where he was a four-time champion rider. Much of his success came in lockstep
with 30-time France training champion André Fabre. They teamed for Peslier’s
first Breeders’ Cup win on Juddmonte-owned Banks Hill in the Filly & Mare
Turf in 2001 at Belmont Park.

It was during his 11 years as a first-call rider for
Wertheimer et Frère when he was paired with Goldikova, who won Breeders’ Cups
in 2008, 2009 and 2010 for trainer Freddy Head.

Peslier won the Arc on Helissio in 1996, Peintre Célèbre in
1997 and Sagamix in 1998, making him and Pat Eddery the only jockeys to win
three consecutive runnings of Europe’s richest race. Peslier added his fourth
Arc victory on Solémia in 2012.

In addition to his 72 Group 1 wins in France and 23 more in
England and Ireland, Peslier has won top-level races in Dubai, Germany, Hong
Kong and Japan.

Peslier has not had many assignments lately. His last two
rides Thursday will bring his 2024 total to only 26 starts. According to ParisTurf,
his record this year is 24: 3-2-2. Peslier’s most recent win came Saturday on the
3-year-old colt Dayal in a US$22,438 maiden race at Tarbes in France.

“I have had a few starts in the southwest (of France) but
not much” Peslier told ParisTurf early this month. “I have heard
comments from several trainers who believe that I am no longer motivated, but
it’s wrong. I need to work, and I love it, too. Sitting around doing nothing
and receiving unemployment is really not in my DNA.”

Peslier told Racing Post he still wanted to have a
role in the sport, but he was not sure what it would be.

“I’ll wait a while to see exactly how that plays out,” he
said. “I’ll remain involved in breeding, and I will continue to ride out. I
worked six horses (Tuesday), and that will remain my routine on Tuesdays. I
love horses, and I love riding, so that won’t stop.”

Peslier’s last two rides will come Thursday at Hippodrome du
Béquet in La Teste-de-Buch near the southwest coast of France. He will be on
Nasser al Shahania in the Sheikh Mansoor Festival Stakes (G3) for Arabian horses
at 5:40 a.m. EDT and finally on 6-year-old gelding Top Glory, a five-time
winner who is the 9-2 second choice among 16 Thoroughbreds in a 1 1/16-mile
handicap at 9:45 a.m. EDT.

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