AMATEUR horse riders from Wirral are being encouraged to enter a prestigious charity horse race to raise funds for people living with cancer.

Next year marks ten years of the Ernest Cooper Macmillan ‘Ride of Their Lives’ charity horse race at York Racecourse.

The esteemed event, which started in 2012, is viewed as one of the most successful charity horse races in the UK.

Amateur riders can now apply for the opportunity to race thoroughbred horses around the famous racecourse on Saturday, June 11, 2022.

Amateur riders taking part in the race must commit to raising £4,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support, the charity has been in partnership with York Racecourse for over 50 years, in which time over £9million has been raised.

Russ Garrity, retired National Hunt Jockey and current BHA Jockey Coach, has been part of the Ride of Their Lives race since its inception, and is the official Jockey Coach for the 2022 race. 

He said: "Next year’s race will be special because we’re marking ten years of 'Ride of Their Lives'; it’s no exaggeration to say this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

"Riders have to commit to six months of intense jockey training, as well as pledging to raise vital funds for Macmillan - it’s no easy feat.

"Anyone with a passion for riding should apply, you just need determination for the race and fundraising.

"We've seen a lot of amateur riders take part in this race in the past ten years, people from various backgrounds, locations and ages, our oldest rider has been 69.

"I'm very proud to be part of this charity race, it's humbling to know our past riders have helped to raise over a million pounds for people living with cancer."

To apply for Ride of Their Lives, potential jockeys must submit a 60-second video of themselves riding at canter, gallop or jumping along with a referee who can vouch for their riding ability and suitability to race.

Nicole McIlveen, Macmillan fundraising manager for Merseyside, said: “It takes serious guts to put yourself forward for this challenge and at Macmillan we’re appreciative of all the rider’s hard work and generosity.

"Macmillan Cancer Support receives no government funding and relies almost entirely on donations – we simply couldn't help the growing number of people who need us, without the support and generosity of the riders and everyone who has supported them in their fundraising.

"It's no exaggeration to say people with cancer have never needed the support more than they do right now."

To apply for the Ernest Cooper Macmillan Ride of Their Lives 2022 visit the York Racecourse website;

Applications close on Monday December 6, 2021, the successful applicants will be notified during the week before Christmas.