Epsom Derby to be run in memory of late, great Lester Piggott

There is no way the Epsom Derby will let the upcoming Derby Festival pass without remembering Lester Piggott, the legendary rider who won the Classic nine times and who passed away on Sunday.

Epsom raceourse executives are keen to ensure the upcoming Derby meeting includes a tribute to legendary jockey and nine times Classic winner Lester Piggott, who sadly passed away on Sunday.

Jockeys will wear black armbands on both days of the Epsom Derby meeting and there will also be a minute's applause at 1.15pm on Friday where a wreath bearing the colours of 1970 winner Nijinsky will be placed next to Piggott's statue on the Queen Elizabeth II Stand lawn.

There will be a another minute's applause at around 4pm on Saturday just before the Cazoo Derby (In Memory of Lester Piggott) is run at 4:30pm.

Phil White, London regional director for Jockey Club Racecourses, said: "No jockey is more synonymous with our most famous race than Lester Piggott.

"Running the Cazoo Derby in his memory, which we believe has not been done in the 242 previous editions of the race, is a fitting tribute to one of the greatest jockeys of the modern era and the record-holder for most wins by a rider.

"We want to give racegoers on both days the opportunity to pay their respects and celebrate the life and career of this extraordinary sportsman, and we hope that taking the unprecedented step of renaming the Derby shows the high esteem in which Lester is held."

He added: "I would like to thank our sponsors Cazoo for accommodating this request and we hope Friday and Saturday will allow for a fitting tribute to one of the icons of our sport."

Piggott is known as the greatest jockey of all time after amassing an incredible 4,493 winners and the Wantage born rider was crowned Champion flat jockey an awesome 11 times.

The 86-year-old died peacefully in Geneva Switzerland.

The Epsom Derby meeting begins on Friday, June 3 at Epsom racecourse and finishes on Saturday, June 4, culminating in the Epsom Derby.

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