Glen Boss, like all great athletes, has split public opinion throughout his long and distinguished career.
Some punters love him and some don’t. There are also those who want him to give his horse the best chance possible in each ride (‘You’re only as good your last ride’).
The Group One 90-time winner has not been afraid to voice his opinion on everything from race programming to track conditions to rival jockeys.
Boss has been subject to a lot of fines throughout the trip, whether it was for saying the wrong things in the eyes the stewards or celebrating a big win too loudly.
He’s not like other athletes who hide their emotions.
Bosss is known for his sanity and has left behind the old race cliches, post-race responses and generalizations. Boss has also interrogated betting markets and even pounded rival gallopers before the race – sometimes with eggs on his face.
Boss has done a great job of promoting the sport in a field that is struggling to get mainstream media attention, other than the big carnival days.
Most non-racing people will name a jockey from this country if you ask. Boss is the most common answer.
They won’t even know he had a dirty 2021, or that he won three Melbourne Cups consecutively. But they will associate his name with horseracing.
Boss spoke on Racing.com last spring about the importance of being a jockey beyond riding horses.
“Through the whole COVID thing, we are going to people without any idea of racing. And all of a sudden, there are lots of people who are interested in racing because they don’t have anything else to watch.
“We have to make this game more humanized and I am aware of that – we have to give these people something they can cheer at.
He said, “I don’t care if people call me an idiot and a fool…at least they’re talking about it.”
“I don’t care if people call me an idiot, a fool or a fool… they’re still talking about it [racing]. “
GLEN BOOSS ON HIS ANTICS
Bosss was always aware of the importance of punters in the industry – he recently criticized Johnny Get Angry for his place in the Melbourne Cup – more exposure to racing equals greater punting interest.
By playing safe, you won’t attract any new players to “The Great Game” – something Boss couldn’t be accused of.
His lack of safety when celebrating big wins, such as standing up in the irons meters from the post, has led to him drawing the ire of many stewards.
After his Cox Plate win at Sir Dragonet, Boss said that he felt a bit obliged to win these events in order to show people how much it means.
These are moments that you can’t miss if you don’t capture them and see them for what they are. These moments are so important that I refuse to miss them.
“It’s a feeling that I have inside my body, and I refuse to suppress those feelings because someone doesn’t like it.”
Boss’s commentary on racing, penchant for headline-making claims, and celebration carry-on will all be felt.
Although the wins are harder to come by these days, he is still a key link to the mainstream of the sport and one of its great entertainers.
Although he might have been criticised for some of his brazen statements over the years, he never stopped trying to get back on the horse.