Derby-winner Cumani to call time on training career

AFP
Luca Cumani to relinquish the reigns of his successful Bedford House stables (AFP Photo/Matthew Stockman)

Luca Cumani to relinquish the reigns of his successful Bedford House stables

Luca Cumani to relinquish the reigns of his successful Bedford House stables (AFP Photo/Matthew Stockman)

London (AFP) - Derby-winning trainer Luca Cumani has announced he will bring the curtain down on a succesful career spanning more than 40 years in December.

Born in Italy, Cumani has been based at Bedford House Stables in Newmarket, the headquarters of English flat-racing, since the mid-1970s.

His haul of major race victories includes Epsom Derby triumphs for Kahyasi (1988) and High Rise (1998).

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Cumani, 69, was also known for mentoring young jockeys, notably Frankie Dettori whom he guided when the outstanding Italian rider first arrived in England.

Now, however, Cumani intends to concentrate on his stud farm.

"Time waits for nobody," Cumani said in comments reported by the Racing Post website on Monday.

"I have decided this is a good moment to wind down, although I see it as more of a change of direction for me. From next year I will devote all my energies to running our Fittocks Stud."

Cumani, whose daughter Francesca is a television broadcaster on horseracing for Britain's ITV channel, ruled out the possibility of his son Matt, also a trainer, taking over at Bedford Lodge.

"We will be putting Bedford Lodge on the market at the start of next year," said Cumani of the stables from where Pinza was sent out to give 26-times champion jockey Gordon Richards his first and only Derby winner.

"I discussed it with Matt but he is training in Australia, which is really the land of opportunity.

"He is married to Sarah, who is Australian, and they are now expecting their first child. It makes perfect sense for him to stay there."

As well as his Derby triumphs, Cumani saddled Commanche Run to win the 1984 St Leger and he also won major races in the United States, with Tolomeo the first European-trained horse to win the Arlington Million in 1983, at 38-1, while Barathea won the 1994 Breeders' Cup Mile at Churchill Downs.

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