With five days remaining in the Delaware Park meeting, McCarthy has 151 wins to lead Jeremy Rose by 15 victories. McCarthy has won five prior riding titles at Delaware Park since arriving there from Philadelphia Park in 1996.
Plans are for McCarthy to open a small public stable in Florida this winter and to return to Delaware Park as a trainer in 2003. The 39-year-old resident of Wilmington, Delaware said he made the decision to retire because of his health and a diminishing desire to ride.
"There is numerous reasons I came to the decision to retire," said McCarthy, who began his career riding at Belmont Park in 1982. "They all have a lot of meaning to them, but most of all I think I have lost my desire to continue on. Even though for the most part I win races everyday, sometimes multiple winners everyday...it just seems like it is not there for me anymore. I am not as excited about it as I used to be.
McCarthy said he thinks being a trainer will rekindle his desire for the sport.
"Being a trainer is going to give me the excitement I think I need to continue in the horse racing business," he said. "It is going to give me the excitement to keep going, something new to strive for, and hopefully reach some attainable goals."