Chantal Sutherland announced her retirement as a jockey in a statement on her website following her ride on Crushin Hard in today’s eighth race at Woodbine.
“The moment has come where I have decided to announce my retirement from being a professional jockey; I almost can’t believe it myself. I’m not sad, but rather looking at another opportunity to begin a new chapter in my life. Looking ahead, I’m excited about new challenges and new opportunities that life has in store for me,” she wrote.
“Horse racing has been my life for the past 14 years. I’ve reached many of the goals that I set for myself. I’ve lived out many of the dreams I had as a little girl, back when I was riding my pony, mucking stalls, feeding cows, aspiring to finally become a professional jockey and racing in stakes races on a worldwide stage. I’m so very blessed and grateful of the life that I have lived and career that I’ve had.”
A native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, the 36-year-old Sutherland was the first female rider to win the Santa Anita Handicap when she piloted Game On Dude to a nose victory in 2011. She began riding in 2000 and recorded her first win at Woodbine on Oct. 9, 2000, on Silver Bounty.
Sutherland had ridden with regularity on the Southern California circuit the past five years. In 2006 she was named one of People Magazine’s 100 Most Beautiful People.
In 2001 and 2002, she won the Sovereign Award as Canada’s leading apprentice jockey. Her career totals are 931 wins, 930 seconds, 987 thirds from 7,349 mounts, with earnings of $47,285,794.
Sutherland aboard Game on Dude/Benoit photo