Appleby and Simcock heap praise on Lane after rider takes new path
Charlie Appleby has spoken of his delight at helping to successfully execute a plan to end the riding career of Martin Lane on a high after the highly regarded former champion apprentice retired from the saddle on Friday.
After steering Godolphin's Appleby-trained Crown Walk to victory at Chelmsford, Lane revealed he would move to Fiji in the new year and take up the position of operations manager at a new resort development.
The 32-year-old has consistently been a regular source of winners and bowed out having enjoyed 46 successes this year.
His most memorable moments came on the David Simcock-trained Sheikhzayedroad, on whom he landed the Grade 1 Northern Dancer Turf Stakes at Woodbine in 2014.
Lane said on Friday: "After 13 years of race-riding I have decided to retire from my career in the saddle to pursue a new opportunity abroad.
"It has been a difficult decision to make as racing has been a hugely important part of my life and something I have enjoyed immensely since I started my apprenticeship in 2005.
"There have been many highlights, none more so than partnering Sheikhzayedroad to Grade 1 success in Canada and winning the champion apprentice title in 2010. I've loved being part of the racing community and have made many great friendships along the way.
"I would like to thank all of the owners, trainers and stable staff for the great memories and I am particularly grateful to David and Jennie Simcock and to Charlie Appleby who have been my biggest supporters."
Lane added: "In the new year I will be moving to Fiji to take up the role of operations manager at Vunabaka, a new resort development. Although it will be a massive change of pace to race-riding, I'm very excited by the new opportunity and the next chapter in my life."
"We spoke during the week and the plan was for him to hopefully bow out with a winner. I'm delighted that happened and I wish him the best of luck with his new challenge."
Simcock said: "I've known Martin for a long time. He was champion apprentice when we held his licence and he rode a lot of winners for me. Martin was hard-working and liked by everyone in the yard because he's a really nice person.
"He rode horses the way I asked, he was professional and he always saw the bigger picture. In fact, the way he rode Sheikhzayedroad in his early races was a significant reason why the horse had such longevity and did so well."
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