20-time champion jockey AP McCoy has expressed his pride at taking part in a cancer trials fundraiser race organised by Offaly's Pat Smullen, himself a nine-time champion Irish flat jockey.
Four of the greatest jump jockeys of all time, Ruby Walsh, AP McCoy, Paul Carberry and Charlie Swan joined former champion Flat jockey and Classic winning trainer Joseph O'Brien at his Piltown yard this week as a group of nine jockeys continue to get their eye in ahead of a massive fundraiser on both days of the upcoming Longines Irish Champions Weekend.
They will be joined at the Curragh on Sunday week by fellow champions Johnny Murtagh, Richard Hughes, Kieren Fallon and Ted Durcan in the nine-runner Pat Smullen Champions Race for Cancer Trials Ireland over the straight mile.
Pat planned to ride in the race himself but was forced to pull out after a health setback last month. He has been battling pancreatic cancer since early last year and has undergone a number of surgeries and bout of chemotherapy.
The jockeys riding in the Pat Smullen Champions Race for Cancer Trials Ireland will be sponsored by the Irish National Bookmakers Association, Bar One Racing, BetVictor, Adare Manor, Ladbrokes, Ballymore Properties, Betfair, SkyBet and Paddy Power.
The race will be run as the seventh on a stellar card that boasts four Group 1s and will feature alongside a number of other fundraising activities happening over the weekend for Cancer Trials Ireland – the leading cancer research trials organisation.
Cancer Trials Ireland has two pancreatic trials ready to start - one is a trial on a new drug and another in radiotherapy, and all proceeds raised over Longines Irish Champions Weekend will ensure that they start as soon as possible.