Sam Waley-Cohen Produces Fairytale Grand National Story

Sam Waley-Cohen had a day he will never forget when he rode Noble Yeats to victory in the 2022 Grand National. The amateur jockey announced before the race that it would be his last ever ride in the saddle.

Despite not being a professional, Waley-Cohen has had a lot of success in the sport. In 2011, he won the Blue Riband event at the Cheltenham Festival, the Cheltenham Gold Cup, with Long Run. This latest win in the world’s most famous steeplechase ensures he ends his career in style.


Waley-Cohen, a dentist by profession, had an excellent record over the Grand National fences prior to the Aintree feature this year, particularly in the Foxhunters’ Chase. His father purchased Noble Yeats earlier in the season in order to ensure his son had a ride in the race.

The 2022 winner powered home at the end of the 4m2½f contest holding off the 15/2 favourite Any Second Now. Waley-Cohen gave the seven-year-old an excellent ride on the inside of the course.

Noble Yeats is now 20/1 in the betting on horse racing to win the Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse. If he does line up in Ireland, it will be without his partner from Aintree. The 39-year-old confirmed he was sticking with his decision to retire in order to spend more time with his family.

Gold Cup Win Showed How Talented Waley-Cohen Was

When he was successful on Long Run in the 2011 Cheltenham Gold Cup, it helped Waley-Cohen to pick up a lot of coverage around the world. He had beaten the very best in the sport to the most lucrative prize.



Long Run was a horse Waley-Cohen quickly became associated with. He prevailed at Kempton on the horse in the King George VI Chase in 2010, beating the five-time winner Kauto Star in the Boxing Day feature. Another major prize in jumps race.

When he scored on the final day at the 2011 Cheltenham Festival, he became the first amateur rider to win the race in 30 years. There were calls for him to turn professional, however, he opted to stick with dentistry full-time. He now is a very successful entrepreneur, as he owns a business with over 160 practices around the world.

Horse Racing One of Few Sports Where Amateurs Can Have Such Success

Waley-Cohen’s glittering career will give amateur jockeys around the world a lot of hope that they too can have success at the highest level in horse racing. It is one of the few sports where amateurs can compete with the leading professionals.

Due to his amateur status, Waley-Cohen was unable to claim any of the £500,000 prize money which was earned by Noble Yeats in the Grand National. However, that’s unlikely to take away from the fairytale storyline.

Waley-Cohen’s father Robert has been a big supporter of horse racing for a number of years. He is likely to remain in the sport as an owner, especially with Noble Yeats carrying his colours.

The Grand National so often produces a great storyline. The 174th renewal of the race did not disappoint, with Waley-Cohen stealing all the headlines after the marathon contest.


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