Scott McCullagh

The latest in my series of ‘RISING STAR’ jockey interviews sees me talk to promising youngster Scott McCullagh, son of top Irish jockey Niall. He came over to England earlier this summer and is based at West Ilsley Stables with Mick Channon and has already notched eleven winners so far this season. These include big winners THE NIGHT PORTER at Glorious Goodwood and LADIES FIRST at York.

Image result for scott mccullagh The latest news from West Ilsley Stables

Name: Scott McCullagh
Date of Birth:

Who inspired you to get into racing and when did you first realise you wanted to be a jockey

My father (below) inspired me to get into racing and from a very young age I was always interested by horses and  I always knew that I wanted to be a jockey

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Are you related to anybody in racing ?

Well my fathers side is very big into horses Mick Kinane is my uncle, so racing is bred into me and I’m delighted it’s going well so far

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What age did you first ride / first race ride

I was 17 and it was the 23rd of December 2016 on a cold Friday night at Dundalk

What are your strengths and weaknesses

I don’t know my strengths and weaknesses yet. I’m still learning to be honest but being positive and doing the best I can do really

Who are your jockey idols you look up to or maybe based yourself on ?

My father would be a big role model for me but I look up to James Doyle (below) as he is tall like myself and his attitude to the game is top class

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When was your first winner and where and how many winners so far approximately

My first winner was at Gowran Park for Mark Fahey on a horse called INVINCIBLE QUEEN.  I’ve had 12 winners altogether so far with 11 of those since I moved over here so it’s going well

Which would you regard as your biggest win

The big apprentice race at Goodwood for the boss on THE NIGHT PORTER (below). I got a good kick out of that !

Who in or out of racing gives you your best advice

My father and my mates back at home

Favourite horse – that you have ridden and would like to have ridden

The Night Porter and looking at ENABLE I think every jockey would like to get their leg over on her as she looks top class

What time do you get up in the morning most days and what would be your average kind of day ?

5:30 I get up every morning out to the yard for 5:40 when I muck out my horse and tack up to be in the school for 6:20 and kick on through the morning then riding how many lots are on the day. I’d then be going racing if I was riding and if not I’d have evening stables at 4 till 6pm

Which stables do you work for or ride out at the moment

Mick Channon

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Who are your best mates in the weighing room ?

I’m friendly with everyone. I be good mates though with David Egan and Conor McGovern as I know them from back home as I went to the same school as David and worked with Conor in Mick Halford’s

What’s the worst part of the job

No worst part about it. I love the game !

What hobbies or sports do you like to watch or play away from racing ?

Hurling football and golf. I love sport so I’d always be watching something

Favourite food and drink

Irish roast

Favourite TV and film


Favourite Music


Scott after winning aboard ICONIC BELLE at Leicester

Which course would you like to ride a winner at this year 

Ascot. I’d love to ride a winner there

How do you like and compare the different All-weather surfaces/courses (if you’ve ridden any yet)

All pretty good they all have their differences but i enjoy riding on the all weather as it’s very fair and normally the best horse wins

If you were put in charge of racing for one day what changes would you make ?

I dunno haha 😂 raise the weights perhaps

What are your ambitions for the near future 

To ride as many winners as possible and stay healthy and well

Are there any types of races you prefer as in sprints or longer distances and if so why

I like the sprints as I love the speed and when you’re on a good sprinter there is no better feeling !

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Many thanks to Scott for his time. A very enthusiastic and exciting addition to the apprentice ranks and we wish him well for the rest of the season and beyond.