Cliff Has Class
Celebrity, or at least notoriety, is a parcel of success. The modern day professional athlete typically gets heaps of attention and a mountainous salary. Too bad their behavior at work and beyond can often be the pits.
A professional athlete has a responsibility to themselves, their team and their public. Nowadays, much practice is needed in the practice of professionalism.
I define the word class as: the intellect of knowing the difference between right and wrong, and making an effort to do what is right. The definition is simple. But so often there is a deficiency in the knowing or doing part – or both.
Cliff Berry is all class. I’ve only known Cliff for five years, but my experience with him in the “working media” and as a friend has been memorable. He has always carried himself as a humble gentleman, he has been dependable and I’m sure he made an effort to do things that he might not have wanted to do. But he did them because he was a professional jockey - and he has class.
Cliff Berry retired as the 44th all-time leading rider based on wins. All-time! Think about that. If he was ranked 44th for 2015 alone that would be a fine honor, but concluding a career at 44th in the national history of thoroughbred racing might be an accomplishment that Cliff hasn’t yet entirely absorbed. Good for you Cliff Berry.
You’ll genuinely be missed by the thousands of horsemen and handicappers who relied on you.
Godspeed to you and your family good man.