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Record-breaking season for Italian champ Rispoli

Italy: Gianfranco Dettori's Italian record of 229 winners in a season finally fell when Umberto Rispoli rode Sugarland to victory at Pisa on November 21.

Records are made to be broken but that one had stood since 1982. Frankie's father was champion 13 times but Rispoli, 21, is young enough to challenge that one too.

Umberto Rispoli Italian Jockey

Umberto Rispoli: 245 wins in 2009

Rispoli rode his first winner in February 2005. He had reached 732 - not including the one he rode for Marco Botti on Satyricon at Kempton in January  2008 - before a five-day suspension put a stop to his season on the last Tuesday in December.

So far it has all been about quantity. Rispoli has only ridden one Group-race winner but he now has thesupport of Scuderia Siba, the country's most powerful owner-breeders.

He also rides for Stefano Botti, who took over the stable of his father Alduino and uncle Giuseppe at the end of May.

Between them, the Bottis would have occupied their usual position at the head of the trainers' table.

Business in the first five months, before the older generation moved to France, was good enough to place them sixth for the complete season on wins (85) and seventh on earnings (€772,808).

Combined with the efforts of Stefano, who had been the dominant amateur rider since 1994 and trained most of his own mounts, the family would have been clear in both categories.

Instead, Riccardo Menichetti, who trains exclusively for the Razza dell'Olmo  of Salvatore Limata and his son Matteo, claimed his first championship on number of winners.

Bruno Grizzetti, the only one to displace the Botti brothers during their more than 30 years of domination - which he did twice at the start of this century - was top on earnings.

Menichetti, who has been training since 1992, finished with a flourish, sending out eight winners in the last four days of the year.

They included Anfitrione, a 33-10 chance for whom he reduced to 12st 10lb before beating the odds-on Casilago by four and a half lengths in a 1m handicap on the dirt at Albenga last Monday.

It was only his eighth ride since 2003 and his first since finishing second on the same horse at the end of 2007.

Amateurs risk losing their licenses if  they do not ride for more than two years and Menichetti, who is in his 40s, is keen to hang on to his.

Menichetti uses Luca Maniezzi (sixth with 124 winners) for his runners in Milan and Carlo Fiocchi (ninth on 103) for those in Rome, where the dell'Olmo string is based.

Fiocchi rode both of their most important winners last year, My Sweet Baby -  a half-sister to Gladiatorus - in the Group 3 Premio Regina Elena (1,000 Guineas) and Silver Arrow in the Group 2 Premio Ribot.

Most of the big stables are at the top on both winners and earnings, with Vittorio Caruso the most significant exception.

His 43 successes included four (plus a Group 2 at Longchamp) with the Group 1 Premio Roma winner Voila Ici and placed him fifth on earnings.

Razza Emiliana bred the winners of 99 races in Italy and five abroad. Scuderia Siba, which now breeds under the Azienda Agricola Antezzate banner, is the only other stud farm to have produced more than 100 winners in a season.

Top five jockeys 2009

1. Umberto Rispoli 245 wins (from 1,311 rides) €2,514,521

2. Dario Vargiu 155 (809) €2,028,661

3. Nicola Pinna 134 (790) €1,276,180

4. Mirco Demuro 130 (534) €2,259,971

5. Sebastiano Guerrieri 130 (804) €618,386

Top five trainers 2009

1. Riccardo Menichetti 253 wins (2,093 runners) €2,583,251

2. Bruno Grizzetti 214 (1,379) €2,852,136

3. Stefano Botti 190 (666) €2,238,191

4. Marco Gasparini 117 (796) €1,172,415

5. Mario Marcialis 106 (765) €832,752



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