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"I do enjoy it and I do see a future in it" - Jonjo Bright on pin-hooking success

Jonjo Bright enjoyed a successful start to his pin-hooking operation, when his first offering at a store sale returned a very healthy profit when coming under the hammer at the Goffs Land Rover sale. 

The former point-to-point rider consigned a Fame and Glory gelding that he had purchased as a foal for €14,000, which went on to realise €38,000 in the Kill sales ring and it is a very positive start to his move into the pin-hooking business, one that the 25-year-old hopes will continue into the future.

Appearing on Off The Ball’s Friday Night Racing, Bright who was paralysed from the waist down in a fall at Tyrella point-to-point in 2013, spoke of his recent success at the sales.

“That was my first one, I have another one (three-year-old store) that I am going to hold onto. I weighed it up and thought he wouldn’t make enough through the ring and I quite like him, so I am going to hold onto him and take a chance in a point-to-point with him. 

“I have been trying to buy two foals every year and in my case here I try and keep them until they are three-year-old’s. The gamble there is getting them back to the sales healthy and correct and getting them onto the next man. 
“At the moment it is just national hunt horses. My knowledge on any of this is very limited at the minute but certainly on the flat I would have a lot to learn yet, but that could be something for the future.”
Point-to-Point handler Ian Ferguson, who does much of the buying for leading owner Wilson Dennison, has proven to be a valuable advisor, as he explained his approach to acquiring young stock.
“I am lucky, I have had a nice bit of help from Ian Ferguson who is probably as good a judge at buying a foal as you will get. 
“I quite like a young sire. For example, with my first two there, it has worked both ways – Fame And Glory by the time he has had runners he has gone very popular – boys can’t get enough of them. 
It is the ultimate gamble, but when it works it just shows you there it’s nice. 
“That Fame And Glory horse, he had nice big joints, he had nice big bits of a frame that you could imagine he will grow into. He could always walk. That is something they could either do or they can’t but he was a real head turner as far as moving goes. 
“I have a Sageburg yearling, a Valirann yearling, a Mahler two-year-old and a Frozen Fire two-year-old. The Valirann yearling is the one I really like. He has a lovely active wee pedigree and in the sales ring Valirann has been very popular int eh sales ring.”
Bright also spoke about how he continues to successfully manage his injury and is reaching over 2,000 steps a week.
“The Irish Injured Jockeys put me in the best position to stay in good shape and maintain that. Today I’m just back from the physio and I do that three times a week and then I have the exoskeleton which I don’t think I could do without. It’s basically like a wearable robot that allows me to stand and walk.

"I would do maybe 2,000 steps a week or more sometime. That might not be a lot for someone who records their steps each day, but it’s a lot for someone who shouldn’t even be out of the chair at all. It does the work of probably five or six physiotherapists. It’s all based around the idea that your body wasn’t built to be sitting around all day.”

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