PAT Smullen is taking another round of chemotherapy as he continues his recovery from pancreatic cancer.
The former champion jockey issued a statement on Thursday morning confirming that he will be unavailable to take part in the charity race he has organised for the Curragh on Sunday, September 15th.
“Unfortunately I’ve had a setback with my health and have to undergo chemotherapy," he said. "On advice from my medical team I am unable to ride in the Champions Race for Cancer Trials Ireland. I am bitterly disappointed not to be able to take part in this very special race – I was really looking forward to riding against such a brilliant group of champions, especially at the Curragh.
“I’ve spoken to Horse Racing Ireland who are helping me with the fundraising activity over Longines Irish Champions Weekend and I am more determined than ever that the fundraising activity goes ahead as pancreatic cancer needs more awareness now than ever before,” said the nine-time champion jockey.
The Pat Smullen Champions Race for Cancer Trials Ireland will still feature nine champions - A.P. McCoy, Ruby Walsh, Charlie Swan, Johnny Murtagh, Richard Hughes, Paul Carberry, Joseph O’Brien, Kieren Fallon and Ted Durcan all making a return to the saddle.
There will also be a number of other fundraising activities happening over the weekend for Cancer Trials Ireland – the leading cancer research trials organisation.
Cancer Trials Ireland has two pancreatic trials ready to start - one is a trial on a new drug and another in radiotherapy, and all proceeds raised over Longines Irish Champions Weekend will ensure that they start as soon as possible.
You can donate to Cancer Trials Ireland at cancertrials.ie