Richard turned professional within Horse Riding at the start of the 1984-85 season and found himself partnering a favourite of the Grand National West Tip nine months later.
They parted company at Bechers Brook – the 22nd fence when travelling ominously well but were able to atone for that mishap when winning the National 12 months later.
Richard also became stable jockey to the late David Nicholson The Duke in 1986. It was the start of an extremely successful partnership numerous big race wins were crowned by Charter Party taking the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 1988.
Success was also to follow on the Michael Stoute-trained Kribensis in the Champion Hurdle in 1990 – the season he took the ride on the great Desert Orchid. The partnership won seven races including two King George VI Chases and an Irish Grand National.
Richard became Champion Jockey for the first time in 1993 and that coincided with a move to Champion Trainer Martin Pipe. He retained the championship twice more and landed a second Grand National when partnering the stables Miinnehoma in 1994.
Turning freelance in 1995 Richard continued to ride for many of the leading yards in England and Ireland including those of Dermot Weld and Edward OGrady and Willie Mullins and Philip Hobbs and Paul Nicholls and Jenny Pitman and Gordon Richards. He rode One Man to win two more King Georges at Sandown and Kempton and won the Hennessey Gold Cup at Leopardstown on both Dorans Pride and Florida Pearl.
A neck injury forced Richards premature retirement in 1999 having clocked up almost 1900 winners worldwide and having surpassed Peter Scudamores record for all-time jumps wins.
Richard has undertaken various expeditions since hanging up his boots including a 350-mile cross-country ski race to the Magnetic North Pole and in January this year completed an amazing 673 mile trek to the South Pole something he considers his greatest ever achievement.
He has now joined the BBC racing team at Aintree and writes a column for the Daily Mirror pull-out section on Saturdays and is a consultant to the British Racing School at Newmarket where he coaches young and up-and-coming jockeys.