Shane Dye’s career was defined by brilliance and brashness and as he prepares to be inducted into Australian Racing’s Hall of Fame, little has changed.
Always a colourful personality, Dye doesn’t miss riding but admits he returned to the saddle too soon after brain surgery following a serious race fall in Hong Kong in 2006.
Dye will on Sunday become an Australian Hall of Fame member, joining an elite group.
A self-declared nomad who spends his time between New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, Macau and Mauritius, Dye has not ridden in a race for more than a year.
“I’ll never ride again. Not a hope in the world,” Dye said on Sydney’s Sky Sports Radio.
“I don’t miss riding. I retired on what I wanted to do and I did it and I’ve got no regrets.”
Starting his career in New Zealand, Dye had instant success when he moved to Australia in the mid 1980s, winning the Sydney apprentices’ title in his first season.
He became one of the country’s dominant riders, his big race triumphs including the 1989 Melbourne Cup on Tawriffic, 1995 Cox Plate on Octagonal and four consecutive Golden Slippers starting with Courtza in 1989.
He went on to ride with success in Hong Kong and later Mauritius before making a low-key return to the saddle in New Zealand at the end of 2012.
A fearless competitor, Dye has equally strong opinions, among them his concern for the workload of jockeys.
“They ride every day which I disagree with,” he said.
“No sportsman can sustain being at their top if they’re doing it every day.”
Dye will be one of 10 identities honoured in Canberra on Sunday night following the Black Opal Stakes race meeting.