Jockey Trevor 'Slicer' Simpson hopes current exploits inspire younger ridersFriday, February 19, 2021
BY SHERDON COWAN
Jockey Trevor “Slicer” Simpson turns 52 in a week but shows no signs of it, as he continues to give good performances in the saddle.
In fact, if his words are anything to go by, then it seems he has no intentions of hanging up his whip anytime soon.
Simpson, who has mostly been plying his trade on the North American racing circuit over the past few years, is back in Jamaica for one of his customary visits to his old stomping ground, and duly graced fans with another winning ride.
The five-time champion reinsman piloted the Lorne Kirlew-trained Daytona Belle to victory in a gate-to-wire performance that got the 10-race programme rolling at Caymanas Park on Saturday,February 13.
“Well, you know we know a lot about winning races so the feeling is good as usual, it is always nice to come home every now and again and treat the fans with some winning rides.
“My birthday is next week, but despite my age; I am still feeling strong and healthy and just looking forward and hoping for the best,” Simpson told this publication.
Though his visits are normally short and sweet, spanning no longer than two to three months, Simpson's stay at Caymanas Park could be a lot longer on this occasion, as the coronavirus pandemic has cast uncertainty around his return to Canada, where he does his riding in Lethbridge, Alberta, where the Rocky Mountain Turf Club is situated.
Having recorded over 826,000 cases and over 21,000 deaths, Canada has implemented tight restrictions to stem a second wave of the virus.
“I just want the fans to know that I am here because based on how the pandemic is going, I am not sure when things will get better over there, so I think I am going to be here for a while so let us see how things work out,” the jockey, who has ridden more than 300 winners on the North American circuit, noted.
While he is here for work and, of course, to win races, Simpson is also aiming to use the opportunity to impart some knowledge to his younger peers, so they too can become riders.
Simpson, who entered the profession in 1986 and won his first race aboard Sweet Explosion for trainer Allan “Billy” Williams, is among a number of jockeys that have accomplished much in their riding careers.
Simpson, who was awarded the Order of Distinction in 2004, headlines the list of riders who have ridden 1,000 or more winners at Caymanas Park, with Winston Griffiths, Charles Hussey, Dane Nelson, Omar Walker, Emilio Rodriquez, Shane Ellis, and Andrew Ramgeet being the others in the prestigious club.
Still, Simpson could boast that he is a slight cut above the rest, as his 172 wins in 2002, remains untouched as the most wins in a season at Caymanas Park.
Even now, the man, who formed a formidable combination with Wayne DaCosta in his championship runs, remains in excellent shape and has kept his weight down.
“It is just hard work and dedication that is first and foremost and nothing beats that. So that is one of the main things I intend to pass on to the younger guys coming up and trying to make a life for themselves in the saddle.
“I am just happy for them that they have made it this far, from experience I know it wasn't easy and they just need to come to work every day prepared to give it their all and see what comes,” Simpson shared.
“If they look at me at my age, I am feeling young and healthy all the same and there are no changes where my passion for racing is concerned.
“Like I said, I am here to do some work and that is where my focus is right now, I just want to come to work and try to get as much done as possible and get some good rides and the results will come,” he ended.
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