Bravery brings 26-year career to an end citing economic reasons
Giles Bravery has brought an end to his 26-year training career, citing economic factors as the chief reason.
Based on Hamilton Road in Newmarket, Bravery, whose earliest racing memory came at Plumpton in the 1960s, sent out a steady stream of winners after getting his licence in 1991 and enjoyed a purple patch from 2000 to 2002, reaching double-figure tallies of 17, 21 (his best year) and 12.
He won the Group 2 Cherry Hinton (now the Duchess of Cambridge) in 1999 with the Gary Stevens-ridden Torgau, who was among the best horses the 55-year-old trained. He said picking up her Cartier award the day his daughter Lily was born was the best of his racing life.
Other notable victories came via Diamond White in the 1997 Sweet Solera and Striking Ambition, who won the Pavilion and Carnarvon Stakes in 2003.
However, Bravery, who revealed the news on the Get In show on At The Races on Friday night, has endured a few lean campaigns and had just three winners this year and five last season.
"One takes an economic line on these things and now, at the age of 55, I've got to find a job," he said. "It's been fun. I have knowledge, whether it's worth any wealth I'm not sure, but I want to stay in the game in some way.
"I've no idea what I'll do, but it's an exciting opportunity. Very simply it's that [a financial decision], but it's 26 years and ending last year would have been more fun when our mare Subtle Knife ran at Dusseldorf; that would've been a great day to walk out with your head held high rather than crawling out the gate, but I don't regret anything."
A former assistant to Classic-winning trainer Mark Tompkins, Bravery, who ran Bluebell Wood in the Oaks in 2000, was in playful mood when revealing the news and once said his biggest ambition in racing was to keep enjoying it as it "can be hard work at times".
He added: "You can only do these things for so long at the level trainers like me do it at. We've had moments, bad times and good times. I can't pretend I set the world alight and I can't pretend I didn't do all right with one or two."
Bravery, whose Avarchie was unplaced in a bumper at Huntingdon on Tuesday, has no entries in the coming days.