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O.P. « 2021-Feb-26, 09:43 AM »
Late hoop set to be honoured


FLAGS will fly at half-mast at Flemington on Saturday while jockeys will wear black armbands to honour three-time Melbourne Cup-winning jockey Jim Johnson, who died on Thursday aged 92.

Victorian Jockeys’ Association chief executive Matt Hyland said jockeys riding in the Roy Higgins Quality, named after another late champion jockey, would don black armbands as a tribute to Johnson.

Hyland, the son of former champion jockey Pat Hyland, said Johnson (pictured) was universally respected in racing as a true gentleman of the sport.

“He was just a lovely, kind man,” Hyland said. “When I told my mum this morning that Jim had passed away, the first thing she said was what a beautiful man he was.

“In that era, he was a really popular figure among the jocks for obvious reasons.”

Johnson entered the Australian Racing Hall of Fame in 2009 to commemorate a career that produced more than 2100 winners.

The peaks of Johnson’s illustrious career included winning the 1963 Melbourne Cup on Gatum Gatum and the 1968 and 1969 Melbourne Cups on Rain Lover.