PATRICK Mullins will miss this year’s Cheltenham Festival after deciding against turning professional.
Amateur jockeys have unable to ride under Rules in Britain since January due to Covid-19 restrictions.
They will not be allowed to return until at least March 29, in line with the Government’s planned resumption of grassroots sports.
OFFERS OF THE DAY
Betfair: Bet £10 on the first race at Doncaster Saturday, get £60 in free bets - CLAIM HERE
Paddy Power: Bet £5 on racing, get £40 in free bets (£20 now, £20 during Cheltenham) - CLAIM HERE
Betfair: New customer offer, Min single £10 Sportsbook bet on the 13:45 Doncaster, 06th March ('Win or E/W' market only). £10 free bet for each of the remaining Sat Doncaster races. Deposits using cards or Apple Pay only. T&Cs apply. 18+ BeGambleAware.Org
Paddy Power: New Customer Offer. Place a £5 single racing bet, min odds 1/5 (1.2) and get £20 in free bets. You will also get an additional £5 in free bets for each day of the Cheltenham festival (£40 in total). Only deposits made using cards or Apple Pay will qualify for this promotion. Free bets will be awarded after the qualifying bet has been settled and are valid for 30 days. T&Cs apply. Paddy's Rewards Club: Get a £10 free bet when you place 5x bets of £10+. T&Cs apply. 18+ Begambleaware.org
Mullins, the most successful amateur of all-time, was slated to have an unbelievably strong book of rides for his father Willie.
But he will now miss out on Sharjah in the Champion Hurdle, Kilcruit in the Champion Bumper and Billaway in the Hunter Chase.
The four-time Festival-winning rider had hope to take out a temporary professional licence, allowing him to ride at the Festival.
BET OF THE DAY: GET £60 IN FREE BETS BY BETTING £10 ON RACE ONE AT DONCASTER THIS SATURDAY
But the minimum term he would have to ride as a professional is 12 months.
Following talks with Irish racing chiefs, he has decided to retain his amateur status.
Mullins said: “I’d have to hold a professional licence for one year and that’s not what I wanted to do.
TEMPLEGATE'S TIPSTop class David Bass can land the £45,000 Premier Chase at Kelso
HOUSE OF ELLIOTTNet worth and personal life of racehorse trainer Gordon Elliott
PUNTING POWERBetting offer: Get £40 in FREE BETS by betting just £5 with Paddy Power
BET BOOSTDoncaster: Get £60 in FREE BETS for six races after you bet £10 on first race
'APPALLING'Gordon Elliott BANNED for 12 months and fined £13,000 over dead horse photo
CHATTY CHAPPERSGordon Elliott - his behaviour's unacceptable and so is the vile abuse
"What I wanted to do was ride as a professional until the end of the season and take six months off, which used to be the old rule, in order to come back and be an amateur but they didn’t bite.”
Willie Mullins is expected to have a successful Festival, with or without his son to assist him in the saddle.
The leading trainer saddles favourites in half of the 28 races, including dual Gold Cup winner Al Boum Photo.
FREE BETS GET OVER £2,000 IN SIGN UP OFFERS HERE
Commercial content notice: Taking one of the bookmaker offers featured in this article may result in a payment to The Sun. 18+. T&Cs apply. Begambleaware.org
Remember to gamble responsibly
A responsible gambler is someone who: