Stefano Cherchi: Italian jockey dies aged 23 after horse racing fall in Canberra

Italian jockey Stefano Cherchi has died following a fall in Australia last month.

The 23-year-old suffered a head injury and internal bleeding following a fall on Robert Quinn’s Hasime at Canberra Racecourse on March 20.

Cherchi moved to England as a teenager and had his first ride there aboard Casina Di Notte in August 2018, riding 106 winners in the UK.

Cherchi rode 106 winners in the UK

The New South Wales Jockeys Association posted on X: “With deep sadness, the Cherchi family have announced their beloved son Stefano passed away peacefully today.

“The family are very grateful for the love, prayers & messages sent by the racing community across the world.”

Cherchi was largely based with trainer Marco Botti while in Britain and also rode for Saeed Bin Suroor and Amy Murphy.

‘He was part of the family’

Botti told Sky Sports Racing: “We’re all very sad after what happened. Stefano joined us when he was only 17 and he came to England as an apprentice jockey,

“Since then, we shared our love and a lot of nice memories and wins. We supported him in his career when he moved to Amy Murphy and we’ve always been in touch.

“It wasn’t just a trainer and jockey relationship, he was part of the family. We always tried to advise him, talk to him when he needed it and he was so excited about his new chapter in Australia.”

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Trainer Marco Botti paid tribute to jockey and fellow countryman Stefano Cherchi after his passing on Wednesday.

Jack Quinlan, stable jockey of Amy Murphy, said: “I will miss your infectious smile and your heart of gold but most of all I will miss you.”

Australian-based Irish jockey Eoin Walsh also paid tribute to Cherchi, saying: “Back in October last year, Stefano and I spoke about moving over to Australia.

“‘F**k it mate, let’s do it’ I wish this conversation never happened. The kindest guy I’ve ever met and it’s been an absolute pleasure babysitting you the last few years. I’ll never forget you.”

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Jockey Eoin Walsh pays tribute to Stefano Cherchi following his tragic death at the age of 23.

The British Horseracing Authority added on X: “We are heartbroken to hear the news that Stefano Cherchi has died following a fall at Canberra Racecourse last month.

“Stefano rode over 100 winners in Britain before moving to Australia, and the high esteem in which he was held around the world is clear to see.

“Our thoughts are with his friends, family, and everyone who has had the pleasure of working with him. The entire racing industry will be in mourning after the loss of such a talented young man.”

Jockey Callum Shepherd also paid tribute on X, saying: “He was a great friend, he was incredibly kind and I think he thrived off making those around him happy.

“What defined him to us, those lucky enough to have known him, and I really do mean lucky, was the human being he was.”

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