France Galop salutes the extraordinary career of Freddy Head: 58 exceptional seasons!

30 December 2022

Freddy Head


Freddy Head has announced his retirement from an incredibly rich career that he began as a jockey and ended as a trainer. His career spanned over 58 exceptional seasons that have marked the history of horse racing. France Galop salutes Freddy Head’s remarkable career and his commitment to the development of racing in France and abroad and wishes him a happy retirement.

At 16, Freddy Head dreamt of becoming a jockey. To learn his trade, his father Alec Head, a trainer of racehorses and founder of the stud Haras du Quesnay, sent him to Australia. Back in France, he was immediately successful when he lifted the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe with Bon Mot at the tender age of 19. He would ride three more Arc winners, the world’s best horserace. His final victory in this international challenge was a true family affair, as the champion mare Three Troikas had been bred by his father, was trained by his sister Christiane Head and ran in the silks of his mother.

At the age of 50, Freddy Head hung up his boots after enjoying nearly 3000 victories, including 4 successes in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, 6 in the Poule d’Essai des Poulains, 8 in the Poule d’Essai des Pouliches, 6 Prix Jacques Le Marois, 4 Prix du Jockey Club and 4 Prix de Diane. It is a remarkable achievement that also saw him crowned champion flat jockey six times after riding the most winners in a season.

Following a career at the top of the game, Freddy Head fulfilled a lifelong ambition when he took out his trainer’s licence. Some of the most famous owners, like the Wertheimer brothers, sent horses to be trained from his yard at Chantilly/Gouvieux. His second career was marked by the likes of champion Marchand d’Or, who gave him his first Group 1 success (the highest category in horseracing) as a trainer, but also Moonlight Cloud, Solow, as well as the incredible Goldikova, who lifted an amazing 14 Group 1 races.

Today, at the age of 75, Freddy Head has announced that he is going to retire. His children Christopher and Victoria are continuing the family tradition and have already started training, much to their father’s pride.


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Statistics of Freddy Head’s career in France:

  • As a jockey:

He rode in 12 461 races

He won 2 070 races

He triumphed in 306 Group races, including 89 Group 1 races

  • As a trainer:

His horses ran in 5 914 races

And won 846 times

They lifted 114 Group races, including 39 Group 1 races