New kid on the block: Scott McCullagh shining under Channon's tutelage
It has been quite a turnaround for apprentice jockey Scott McCullagh, who after teaming up with Mick Channon this season has taken his form to another level.
McCullagh, son of jockey Niall, found opportunities hard to come by in his native Ireland and made the brave call to start afresh at Channon's Newbury-based yard, a decision which has been rewarded since.
He left Ireland with a record of one win from 60 rides and now boasts an impressive six from 28 win ratio and a 21 per cent strike-rate in Britain.
As well as quantity, McCullagh is riding some quality horses, including The Night Porter, who he partnered to victory in the Qatar Apprentice Handicap at Glorious Goodwood – the highlight of his career so far.
'He relaxes horses and helps them find their feet'
Other trainers have been keen to utilise his 7lb claim. Richard Spencer employed him to ride La Isla Bonita at Yarmouth last week, and Charlie Hills and Eve Johnson Houghton have also opted to call upon his services.
Jack Channon, assistant trainer to his father Mick, said of the young rider: "He came over from Ireland and we put him on a couple of our horses and he seemed to get a good tune out of them. It quickly became apparent that he looked good value for his claim.
"He relaxes horses and helps them find their feet in races which is what we want from our riders."
Asked what the future may hold for McCullagh, Channon said: "He has a good head on him and if he keeps focused and stays sound then there is no reason why he can't continue to be a success."
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