Cyril Small considers retirement after lifetime of racing
FAMOUS Casino jockey Cyril Small rode in honour of his father in the Bob Small Bridle Memorial Race at the Casino Racing Club on Saturday.
The 60 year old jockey's red and yellow silks crossed the line in second place.
When asked if he was considering retirement, Small nodded even though he still loves to ride.
Now living in the Gold Coast hinterland, Small had his first race when he was still at school.
Small was born on a cattle property between Grafton and Casino and swears he was riding horses before he could walk.
He attended Wyan School and then Marist Brothers in Casino, he said.
He loved horses so much he even rode them to the 20-student school at Wyan.
His love affair with racing was highlighted by a win at Lismore in the Vo Rogue's famous Group 1 triumphs.
"I made $3.5mil on Vo Rogue,” Small said.
With Small in the saddle, Vo Rogue was written into the record books and finished a glorious career with 26 wins including 11 that are now categorised as Group 1s. Vo Rogue changed Small's life and he was devastated when the horse died in 2012 at the grand age of 28.
His family joined at the Gold Cup Day in Casino on the weekend including his son Braidon Small who rides steeplechase.
What keeps him in the saddle?
"I love all of it,” he said. "Jockeys need an opportunities to ride winners.”