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Donoghue to take a break as his battle with weight rumbles on

Keith Donoghue proves his fitness as first jockey home in Jog For Jockeys at the Curragh
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Keith Donoghue has decided to take a break from the saddle for the ''foreseeable future" as his weight battle rumbles on. 

Donoghue, who is almost 6ft, has ridden 22 winners this season and got down to 11st to partner Mega Fortune when he won a juvenile hurdle at Down Royal in early December. But getting down to such a low weight was torture for Donoghue, 23, whose body is struggling to cope with the pressure being put on it.

After partnering Sizinguptheamazon (11st 12lb) to finish second behind Castlegrace Paddy in a maiden hurdle at Gowran Park on Saturday, Donoghue tweeted: "As people know I've been struggling with my weight and I can't get it under control so I will be taking a break from racing for the foreseeable future".

Speaking about the issue on Sunday, he said: "It's so disheartening. I picked up a couple of suspensions as well which didn't help. I need to be riding all the time to keep my weight down. It's easier during the summer when there's more racing, there are more rides, and it's easier to sweat and lose weight in the sun.

"It feels like my body has given up on me and is sick of me trying to lose weight. Last week I ran over 60 kilometres to try to lose weight. I've been constantly running. I've run for over an hour a day for the last few months but it just isn't working. My body isn't letting me do it any more."

He added: "I'm hoping it might settle down soon and I can get back to riding but, at the moment it just isn't working and every day is a battle. I'll definitely try though. I'm sweating every day and doing everything I can. I'm watching every single thing that goes into my mouth. 

"It's such a pity as this has been a brilliant season for me. Gordon [Elliott] has been very supportive and but for him I'd be lost altogether. I'll continue to ride out for him every morning. Gavin Cromwell and Andy Lynch give me work too."

It is just so disheartening. I picked up a couple of suspensions as well which didn't help. I need to be riding all the time to keep my weight down

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