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Collier Row jockey Danny Cook on board one of Grand National favourites

PUBLISHED: 16:00 06 April 2017

Jockey Danny Cook will ride Definitly Red at the Grand National on Saturday. Picture: Nigel French/PA Archive/PA Images.

Jockey Danny Cook will ride Definitly Red at the Grand National on Saturday. Picture: Nigel French/PA Archive/PA Images.

PA Archive/PA Images

One of the jockeys hoping to race to glory at the Grand National on Saturday grew up in Collier Row.

Jockey Danny Cook, right, in action, riding Ballycrystal at the Scottish Grand National Day. Picture: Danny Lawson/PA Archive/PA Images.Jockey Danny Cook, right, in action, riding Ballycrystal at the Scottish Grand National Day. Picture: Danny Lawson/PA Archive/PA Images.

Danny Cook, who now lives in York, grew up in Lodge Lane and is set to ride favourite Definitly Red at the UK’s most famous race at Aintree.

The 33-year-old developed a passion for the sport watching races on TV, while listening to his father and grandfather yell at the screen for their bets to make it first to the finish line.

“It looked interesting,” he said.

“And something that I would like to get into.”

Danny, who lives with his girlfriend and children Isobel, seven, and George, 15 months, spoke to the Recorder yesterday (Thurs) as he prepared for the race.

“I’m watching lots of previous races,” he continued.

“And visualising where I’m going to be and what’s going to happen.”

Danny began racing as a teenager around the age of 16.

Aintree is believed to have been the first track he ever visited, and Saturday will be the second time he has ridden the course.

He first took part in the Grand National in 2010 but his mount, Pablo Du Charmil, fell at the second fence.

This year, he remains optimistic.

“Hopefully it will go great,” he added.

“[Definitly Red] is at the front of the mark. He’s running at weight.”

The jockey also has his upcoming nuptials in July to look forward to.

“I will have to win the National to pay for it all,” he said.

“Definitly Red is my favourite horse that I’ve ridden.”

Danny has come a long way and is the only person in his family to take up riding.

“My family are all landscape gardeners or builders.”

The family business, Crown Landscapes, is still in Lodge Lane.

“My family are very proud to see me get to where I’ve got,” he said.

“I didn’t really know how far I would go. My first ambition was to ride, now it’s to win.”


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