McCarron planning school for aspiring riders.

McCarron planning school for aspiring riders.


McCarron Wants to Develop Jockey School

Retired Hall of Fame jockey Chris McCarron announced that he would resign from his position with Magna Entertainment this spring and move to Kentucky, where he intends to open a jockey school.

The 49-year-old McCarron, who is Magna's vice president for industry relations and previously served as Santa Anita's vice president and general manager from March 2003 until last October, said he decided on the idea for a jockey school while recovering from injuries suffered in a spill several years ago.

"I was laying at home recuperating from a couple of broken legs and a broken arm," McCarron said. "I knew that, truthfully, when my career was over that I would either end up training horses or riders. I am also missing being around the horses everyday."

McCarron said the jockey school is still in the initial planning stages. He chose Lexington because of its stature as the Thoroughbred capital of the world. The Eclipse Award-winning jockey says he plans to take a proactive role in the training and development of the nation's future riders.

"I'm going to let someone else more qualified be in charge, so I can be out there on horseback showing those kids or horsemen (how to ride)," McCarron explained. "(The students will) be learning everything about racing, right down to mucking out stalls and picking out feet."

Though a location for the school has yet to be selected, McCarron said he's looking for an existing facility "with a large enough track to breeze horses around safely."

McCarron said he is concentrating on "the right business plan and getting the right people involved."

Funding details and support for the school still need to be addressed, he said, adding that he'll explore relationships with racetracks and racing organizations once he gets to Kentucky. He's hopeful of getting the school up and running by the end of 2005.

McCarron retired from the saddle in 2002 with 7,141 wins and two Eclipse Awards, one as the nation's top apprentice in 1974 and top jockey in 1980.