Cheltenham Gold Cup-winning jockey Andrew Thornton rides the final four races of a distinguished 28-year career at Uttoxeter on Wednesday.
Thornton, 45, has recorded 1,006 British wins, one of an elite bunch of jump jockeys with more than 1,000.
His biggest success came on Cool Dawn in the 1998 Gold Cup. His other major triumphs include the 1997 King George VI Chase on See More Business, 2007 Welsh National on Miko De Beauchene and 2001 Scottish National on Gingembre.
jockey Andrew Thornton, aged 45, has won 1,006 races in the UK in a 28-year career
Although operating on the southern circuit in recent years, Thornton was born in Cleveland. His entrance to racing came via Co Durham trainer Arthur ‘WA’ Stephenson, who supplied Thornton’s first win courtesy of Wrekin Hill at Sedgefield in November 1991.
Stephenson’s support helped Thornton become champion amateur in the 1992-93 season. He landed his 1,000th winner on Kentford Myth at Wincanton on Boxing Day 2016 before he was sidelined for 10 months with a knee injury.
Thornton, nicknamed ‘Lensio’ in the weighing room because he wears contact lenses, said: ‘People talk about the end of an era, but I’ve probably spanned two eras!
‘I have four rides (at Uttoxeter) but even if one wins, I’ll be riding the fourth, simply because I love it.’