TUCKER Geraghty spoke of his delight as his son Ross was crowned champion jump jockey in America in his third season.
The rider's total of just 17 wins may not sound many - but in a country where jump racing is limited it was enough to see him come out on top by three from his nearest rival Darren Nagle as the curtain came down at Springdale racecourse in Camden.
Geraghty, 35, the older brother of top jump jockey Barry, enjoyed his biggest success in Ireland on The Bunny Boiler in the 2002 Irish Grand National.
"We knew for the last few weeks he was champion jockey-elect because he was a few winners ahead and there weren't that many meetings left, so we were watching his progress," said his proud father, who trains in Co Meath.
"There's just a small pocket of jump racing there, but there's good prize money in it.
"He's a lovely lifestyle over there in Maryland and it's a smashing part of the world.
"Things got pretty competitive over here and he was offered a job there three years ago, he took it and has made good progress.
"Initially he was with Tom Voss and had a great time the first year. Then the following year things didn't work out as well and they parted company.
"He made other contacts in the area and he rides mainly now for Irv Naylor. He's the leading owner over there and he buys a lot of horses from the UK and Ireland, those just short of top class. Now he's established, he's getting lots of outside rides as well. They might only have a meeting once a week or every two weeks and there might be a big Flat card with a couple of jump races on it, so there are limited opportunities.
"We're not sure yet what he's doing for the winter. He could come home and do some hunting or he might go for a holiday. He stayed over there last winter and did some hunting, which he likes. He had great success over here. He won the Irish Grand National and won most of the big handicaps, but it's very competitive here so he gave it a shot in America and it's worked out well."