Racing legend Pat Smullen has died at the age of 43

Nine-time Irish champion jockey and 12-time European Classic winner Pat Smullen has died at the age of 43.

The news emerged late last night when The Racing Post announced the Rhode, Co Offaly jockey's sad passing on social media.

The Offaly man was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2018 and retired from the saddle last year.

His family confirmed to the paper that he died this evening in St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin.

Since then, tributes have been pouring in from racing fans who have described Pat as a gentleman, legend, and a true ambassador for the sport.

Navan man and racing fan Hector O hEochagain posted on Twitter: "I am sad now this evening with the news of Pat Smullen, my thoughts and love are with him & his family .. what a great man .. a lovely man, an Irish man & one of the finest jockeys the sport has even seen ... May he be at peace now.

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