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Defending champion David Egan pulls out of apprentice title race to turn pro

David Egan is switching to a full professional licence
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Reigning champion apprentice David Egan is abandoning his chance to defend that crown having concluded that taking out a full professional licence will signify a message of intent regarding his future ambitions.

Egan, who narrowly edged out Kieran Shoemark after a furious tussle to become last season's top apprentice, is already a long way clear in this year's title race.

However, following a move to join leading agent Tony Hind, the star 19-year-old has decided to concentrate on bigger riding goals, supported by his principal trainer Roger Varian, and will no longer be eligible to compete as an apprentice once the process of obtaining his professional licence is finalised.

Champion apprentice David Egan with his proud jockey-father John Egan

"I moved to Tony today, and after speaking with him and the boss I've decided I no longer want to be classed as an apprentice," said Egan, whose right to claim ran out in June.

"In some respects dual champion apprentice does sound good but it isn't the be all and end all. I'm looking to go up to the next level, rather than be seen as someone who is chasing low-grade winners in order to be champion apprentice again."

Egan added: "One day I would be keen to go for the jockeys' championship and Tony Hind is the right man to give me the best possible chance.

"I've had no fallout with my previous agent, Steven Croft, but the chance to join Tony came about and I couldn't turn that down."

Jamie Gormley and Jason Watson now lead the apprentices' championship, with both jockeys having ridden 20 winners this season as of the start of racing on Thursday.


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I'm looking to go up to the next level, rather than be seen as someone who is chasing low-grade winners in order to be champion apprentice again
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