InterviewThe Big Read

'It was one of the lowest points in my life. I felt a sense of injustice and I still feel it now'

Lee Mottershead delves inside the mind of eight-time champion jockey Peter Scudamore in a special interview

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Lee MottersheadSenior writer
Peter Scudamore changed the face of jump racing and continues to enjoy success alongside partner Lucinda Russell
Peter Scudamore changed the face of jump racing and continues to enjoy success alongside partner Lucinda RussellCredit: Edward Whitaker

It is like rewinding the clock more than 30 years. With a hot drink to his side and a snoring dog in the background, Peter Scudamore approaches the job of self-analysis with all the dedication, concentration and commitment that made him a record-breaking jump jockey. The mission before us is to go inside his mind. Some of the things located deep within it seem to surprise even him.

We talk for two hours. At no point does it ever become boring. Scudamore is searingly honest, not least with himself. There are times when he suddenly darts from one subject to another, not in an attempt to avoid or evade but because an important new thought has popped into his head. He tells me subsequently that the conversation was therapeutic. The admission is reassuring but not surprising.

Scudamore has always had a reputation for being one of racing's most decent individuals. He is also among its most fascinating. He is the eight-time champion jockey who revolutionised his trade, just as long-time ally Martin Pipe did for the art and science of training racehorses. Scudamore made his profession more professional than it had ever been. He posted more wins in a season and career than anyone before him. Richard Dunwoody and Sir Anthony McCoy, the two men who smashed his records, had learned from a man who was the best and wanted to be the best.

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Published on 16 March 2024inThe Big Read

Last updated 19:08, 16 March 2024