Champion Jumps jockey Richard Johnson has expressed his immense pride and shock at being recognised with an OBE in The Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.
The 41-year-old is one of the most decorated and popular riders in the modern era. He has ridden over 3,500 winners and won his second Cheltenham Gold Cup in March aboard Native River. Included on a glittering CV are Champion Chase and Champion Hurdle victories.
Johnson, seeking a fourth consecutive Jump jockeys’ title, is recognised for services to horseracing.
Johnson said: “I was delighted to hear the news that I will be honoured with an OBE in the New Year Honours list. It’s an amazing accolade to receive and I am so lucky to earn it by doing a job I love. It’s something I’ll treasure forever.
“I have to thank the whole racing community as they have helped me get this award, especially my mum, dad and wife Fiona.
“My parents put me on this path and together they have all helped me stay on it. It’s a busy routine and one that takes a lot of time, effort and dedication.
“The good days are great, and they have always been very supportive and patient. Along with many other people along the way they have helped me live my dream.
“There have been many proud days in my time as a jockey but to win the jockey’s championship three times has been the standout memory as that was always my aim.
“To succeed and achieve my goals means so much to me and I will continue to try to add to my collection until the day I have to give it up.”