Following the incident in which the Belgian elbowed Rossa Ryan off his horse at Saint-Cloud on Friday, Christophe Soumillon lost his retainer with the Aga Khan Studs for a second time and declared his intention to rebuild his career.
Following a previous stint in the renowned green silks from 2002 to 2009, Soumillon had been the Aga Khan’s retained rider since 2014.
The most well-known jockey in French racing was scheduled to have crucial discussions with the Aga Khan’s team on Monday after shocking the industry when he made contact with Ryan mid-race at Saint-Cloud, resulting in a 60-day suspension.
A statement released by the Aga Khan Studs said: “Following last Friday’s incident at Saint-Cloud, which resulted in the fall of Rossa Ryan, the Aga Khan Studs have taken the decision to cease their retainer with jockey Christophe Soumillon with immediate effect.
“From this week onwards, Soumillon may still ride in the Aga Khan silks on occasion at the discretion of the French trainers and the Aga Khan Studs team.
“At this stage, there is no intention to retain a jockey in France for the foreseeable future.”
Soumillon hinted in an interview on Sunday that he knew the writing was on the wall when referring to the “current circumstances.”
Soumillon told the Racing Post that he was “extremely disappointed” to lose his retainer with the Aga Khan Studs, but that he was also “extremely proud and honoured” to have held such a highly esteemed position for so long. He also wished the Aga Khan Studs continued success.
“I realise that I have bridges to rebuild, am determined to show commitment and desire to those owners and trainers that wish to engage my services.”