Racing legend Tommy Kinane dies aged 90 as sport mourns for 'giant' of the game and beloved father of iconic jockey Mick | The Sun

RACING legend Tommy Kinane – a giant of the sport and father of iconic rider Mick – has sadly died aged 90.

A huge figure on and off the racecourse, Kinane was famed for winning the 1978 Champion Hurdle on Monksfield in a golden era of hurdlers.

Kinane and the Des McDonagh-trainer Monksfield saw off Sea Pigeon – who would win the next two renewals – and Night Nurse, the highest-rated hurdler in history who had won the previous two.

His connection to the sport endured all through his life thanks to his son Mick, who was 13-time champion jockey and a three-time Derby winner.

Mick also rode the all-conquering Sea The Stars and Sir Alex Ferguson's best horse Rock Of Gibraltar – the horse that sparked a huge bust-up at Man Utd and led to the Glazers taking control.

Kinane Snr also won the County Hurdle in 1977 and Supreme two years later.

He remained an incredible athlete throughout his life, even performing a headstand at the age of 85 in a video shared widely on social media.

Sun Racing's Matt Chapman was one of those to pay tribute.

He wrote: "Hearing the sad news that the man who rode Monksfield and helped make the great Michael Kinane has passed away.

"Rest in peace Tommy Kinane you absolute legend of a man – just the best bloke."

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Born in Tipperary, Ireland, in October 1933, Kinane was one of 14 children and two of those, Danny and Christy, also went onto become jockeys and trainers.

McDonogh told the Racing Post how Kinane had played a major part in his life.

He said: "It's very sad news. Tommy was a superb rider, a wonderful character, and a great man to have on your side.

"He played a major part in the Monksfield story and in our lives at that time.

"I'd been training for only a few years when Monksfield came along, and Tommy was invaluable to me.

"He rode him first in a handicap at Naas the month before the 1976 Triumph Hurdle and that's when the progression really started.

"Tommy gave Monksfield a fantastic ride to beat Sea Pigeon in the Champion Hurdle in 1978, but the ride that really stands out for me was Stranfield in the Supreme Novices' the following year.

"Stranfield was a miler on the Flat and I wanted him held up for as long as possible to use his speed. He rode him to perfection."

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Kinane's wife Frances died in 2005 and he is survived by his seven children.

The funeral will be held tomorrow at Ardmayle Cemetery, County Tipperary, at approximately 1pm.

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