He was born in Spain.
A little more than forty-seven years later, the man who polished up his arms near Pau (Pyrénées-Atlantiques) confirmed that he was now the king of Chantilly by winning the prestigious Prix de Diane.
Absent being often wrong (the British and Irish jockeys being subject to health constraints still in force), Ioritz Mendizabal won his first Diane on Sunday.
But this prestigious victory only enriches an incredible track record.
The person himself can not believe it: "I won four Golden Cravaches
(Editor's note: in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2010)
but it's incredible what happens to me.
"The winner of the biggest Group I since the beginning of the year (with the Prix du Jockey Club two weeks ago) continues:" If I had been told last year, after the interruption of the races due to pandemic, that I would win the Prix du Jockey Club twice as well as the Diane this year, I would have taken that person for crazy.
"Whether he wins or loses, he's always the same"
Despite his face as angelic as it is youthful, Ioritz Mendizabal is one of the oldest in the peloton. Yet he has bright eyes, like an apprentice, when it comes to looking back on his success in the coveted Prix de Diane,
Joan of Arc
: 'Winning such a race for a trainer like Aidan O' Brien, it's crazy
. As I said before, being associated with one of his horses would have been an honor already. "
A little over a year after having led to success
("the best horse in the world", according to the Basque) in the Jockey Club, the person concerned this time delighted the Irish with his riding full of composure and grace. to his experience. "I've been taking care of him for fourteen years," says Stéphane Coffigny, former jockey and now dresser. Whether he wins or loses, he's always the same. I think that is its strength. "
To achieve this victory on a fairly scattered Chantilly racecourse
(Editor's note: capacity limited to 5,000 people on the site)
, Ioritz Mendizabal and his partner,
Joan of Arc
, were able to contain the two residents of André Fabre, namely
. The most successful French coach in history did not wish to speak on these places on the podium. Whatever, there is only one truth in horse racing: that of the pole. And Ioritz Mendizabal had it in mind again!