The Grand National is one of the biggest races in the world as we all know. And for at least a week before the race, we eagerly watch to see which jockeys will be riding which horses. Often the big names such as Ruby Walsh (now retired), Davy Russell, Richard Johnson, and Barry Geraghty get the first pick. Who they choose to ride can often mean big changes in the odds as they become a firm favourite to win the race.

But being a jockey is a dangerous game and over the last few years, we have seen them take very nasty falls, often resulting in serious injury. And Barry Geraghty, in 2019, was one such example. He was due to ride Anibale Fly for owner JP McManus and trainer Tony Martin. However, he crashed off Peregrine Run in the Topham Handicap Chase at Aintree the day before the National. For his trouble, he suffered two fractures of his right leg and that was the end of his Grand National participation.

At the time he said: “It has been confirmed that I have broken both my tibia and fibula just above my right ankle.

“I haven’t seen a replay of the fall yet, but by the sounds of it, it might have been a kick off a horse that ran over the top of me after the fall that did the damage.

“It’s a real sickener to miss tomorrow as the Grand National is the race I look forward to more than any other. But missing Fairyhouse and Punchestown too is just as sickening.”

That was back in April and Geraghty is still sidelined. However, the good news is that he should be back in saddle in a matter of weeks. He was supposed to make his seasonal debut this month but delayed it until October. That was on advice from his surgeon who urged him to take more time to heal.

That doesn’t mean he has been sitting at home with his feet up though! He has been riding out for Jessica Harrington, Gordon Elliott and Gavin Cromwell as he slowly gets back to full fitness. And in extra duties has been helping out with the Horse Racing Ireland Kids Club. Check out the really cute video of the kids on their first pony ride!

But getting back to his return to racing…

He told At The Races: “I saw my surgeon yesterday and he’s pleased with the progress. But feels I should give it one more month to strengthen before returning to race-riding.

“My fitness is improving all the time and I should be in good shape to start back in early October.”

We look forward to seeing him back in October. And hopefully getting another Grand National under his belt in 2020!!