Jockey Tom Queally, the man closely associated with the great Frankel, is to leave his job as stable jockey at Warren Place and will ride as a freelance next year.
Queally, who rode Frankel to all 14 of his victories, is keen to pursue new challenges after a successful spell which included 14 Group 1s for the late Sir Henry Cecil, who died in June this year.
The decision is the latest change at Warren Place after Cecil’s widow, Lady Jane, confirmed she would be taking over the licence on a full-time basis.
In August, Khalid Abdullah, the principal owner at the yard, appointed James Doyle as his retained rider.
Queally, who will prove a popular addition to the freelance ranks, said: “The decision to go freelance is one that I have thought a great deal about and one that I have not taken lightly but I feel this is the right time to pursue new challenges.”
Meanwhile, Tony McCoy moved to 3,991 career wins over jumps with a double at Ffos Las.
The incredible 4,000-winner milestone is fast approaching for the perennial champion jockey after he secured five victories at Aintree over the weekend and he headed to Wales with a strong book of five rides.
After going down by just a head to Berea Boru aboard the Rebecca Curtis-trained Gate Please in a Maiden Hurdle, McCoy then finished third on the same trainer’s Captain Moonman in the Handicap Hurdle.
McCoy made it third time lucky, however, as he drove out Jonjo O’Neill’s 7-4 favourite Minella For Steak to a one-and-three-quarter-length victory over Ifyouthinkso in the O’Brien And Partners Handicap Hurdle.
The jockey told At The Races: “He won all right, in fairness. He had one to aim at all the way down the back. The amazing thing is he coped with the heavy ground, as his wind has never been great.
“He seemed to jump better than he has in the past.
“The trainer’s horses are flying and he is placing them well.”
McCoy quickly completed a brace as smart hurdler Taquin Du Seuil made a winning start over fences in the Stradey Park Novices’ Chase.
Faced with just three opponents, last season’s Challow Novices’ Hurdle winner was a little deliberate at some of his early fences, but gradually warmed to his task.
O’Neill’s 4-9 favourite loomed up ominously alongside Bob Ford in the straight and eased clear from the final fence to score by two lengths.
McCoy said: “He was very professional and jumped pretty well, on the whole. He’s a proper horse.”
Elsewhere, Bonfire, winner of the Dante Stakes in 2012, has been sold for 120,000 guineas to race for Gai Waterhouse in Australia.
The Andrew Balding-trained four-year-old was bought by Johnny McKeever on behalf of Waterhouse at Tattersalls’ Autumn Horses In Training Sales.
“I think at that money he is a great buy,” said McKeever.
“He vetted clean and the tie forward operation he has had is not a big deal.
“Andrew Balding recommended him – in fact wanted to get him back – and the horse has so much ability with a change of scene and a different way of training, it might just click.
“It all depends on how they adapt.”
Bonfire, who carried the colours of Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, was sent off second favourite for the Investec Derby on the strength of his Group 2 York win but was only sixth to Camelot.
He was found to be lame after finishing sixth in the Eclipse behind Nathaniel last July.
Subsequently gelded, he returned to action this season and has been placed in three of his four starts.
1.40 The Nephew
2.10 Spookydooky (nap)
2.40 Full Of Joy
3.15 Big Casino
4.20 Gone Forever
4.35 Mr Lando
5.10 Gower Princess
5.40 Desert Skies
6.10 Dark Amber
7.40 Men Don’t Cry
1.00 Rural Affair
1.30 Spanish Artist
2.30 Steel Rain
3.05 Keep It Dark
3.40 Jimmy Sewell
Men Don’t Cry