Richard Dunwoody MBE, Motivational Speaker, Champion Jockey, National Hunt Racing, Rider with Desert Orchid, Grand National winner, Explorer, Adventurer, Richard Dunwoody MBE was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland in 1964. He was at the forefront of National Hunt racing, winning the Big Three races – the Grand National, the Champion Hurdle and the Cheltenham Gold Cup. He is best known for his partnership with Desert Orchid on whom he won seven races. However there have been many racing greats associated with this leading rider. His parents were the former National Hunt Trainer George Dunwoody and his wife Gillian. He was educated at Rendcomb College near Cheltenham and his first winner was Game Trust, at Cheltenham on May 4 1983. From 1999-2002 he held the record for the most National Hunt winners ridden. He became a champion jockey three times and was awarded an MBE for services to his sport. High points of his career include winning the Grand National on West Tip in 1986 and Miinnehoma in 1994 as well as the Gold Cup on Charter Party in 1988. An injury to his neck and right arm forced him to quit the sport in December 1999. Accolades include the National Hunt Jockey of the Year, which he won from 1990 to 95 - an award he cherishes because it was a peer vote. He was voted Champion of Champions in 2001.

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Background

Richard Dunwoody MBE was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland in 1964. He was at the forefront of National Hunt racing, winning the Big Three races – the Grand National, the Champion Hurdle and the Cheltenham Gold Cup. He is best known for his partnership with Desert Orchid on whom he won seven races. However there have been many racing greats associated with this leading rider.

His parents were the former National Hunt Trainer George Dunwoody and his wife Gillian. He was educated at Rendcomb College near Cheltenham and his first winner was Game Trust, at Cheltenham on May 4 1983. From 1999-2002 he held the record for the most National Hunt winners ridden. He became a champion jockey three times and was awarded an MBE for services to his sport.

High points of his career include winning the Grand National on West Tip in 1986 and Miinnehoma in 1994 as well as the Gold Cup on Charter Party in 1988.

An injury to his neck and right arm forced him to quit the sport in December 1999.

Accolades include the National Hunt Jockey of the Year, which he won from 1990 to 95 - an award he cherishes because it was a peer vote. He was voted Champion of Champions in 2001.

Richard still has the desire to push himself to the personal limit. Today, Arctic Exploration, charity marathons and motor sports, shadow his career as a professional speaker, newspaper columnist, television racing pundit and guest on programmes such as BBC TV’s ‘Superstars‘.

He is planning to take part in a South Pole expedition this year and relishes the prospect of battling with the elements. Dicing with death will undoubtedly figure in speeches to come.

Richard has appeared on many terrestrial, local and satellite television programmes including: This is Your Life, Call My Bluff, Blankety Blank, Ready Steady Cook, Superstars and Question of Sport.
He presented Back A Winner, a topical sports gaming show on digital channel Nation 217 during the winter months 2005.

He has run 4 marathons (P.B. 3hrs 10 mins) and competed in the London Triathlon 2002.

In Arctic Exploration he finished 2nd as a member of the Polar Team in the inaugural Polar Race 2003 over 350 miles to the Magnetic North Pole, man-hauling 60 kilo sledges and experiencing temperatures as low as –45 degrees Centigrade. This he completed in an accumulated time of just over 11 days.

Areas of Expertise

Achievements

Richard was awarded an MBE in June 1993.
Voted National Hunt Jockey of the Year 1990/92/93/94/95 by fellow jockeys
Ride Of The Year Award (SIS/ Sporting Life) 1995 and 96
Horserace Writers and Reporters Association Derby Award 1995
Voted Champion of Champions 2001

Amongst his many wins, the most poignant include:

First winner
Game Trust, Cheltenham, 4th May 1983
First winner - Ireland
Dearg Doom, Downpatrick, May 1985
Record Breaking winner
1,679 Yorkshire Edition, Wincanton, 5th April 1999 - Held record for most winners ridden: 1699
Record - Centuries ridden
10th consecutive century ridden in 1998/99 season
Champion Jockey
1992/3, 1993/4, 1994/5
Best Season
197 winners, 1993/4
Major wins
Aintree Grand National (2), Cheltenham Gold Cup, King George VI Steeplechase (4), Champion Hurdle, Breeders Cup Chase (USA) (2)
Total Winners Ridden
Britain 1699 Ireland 172 Abroad 10
Best horse ridden
Desert Orchid

Established Author
Hell for Leather (1993)
Duel (1994)
Hands and Heels (1997)
Obsessed (Autobiography) (2000)
Our Gumball Rally (2005)
Horses of My Life (2005)

Motor racing
Formula First UK Championship in 1998 & 1999
The Ginetta guest series 1999, 2002, 2004, 2005
Porsche Supercup, Silverstone Grand Prix 1999 & 2000

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