Updated on 09/17/2011 9:46AM

Fallon enters alcohol treatment center


Kieren Fallon, Britain's champion jockey in five of the last six years, has admitted himself to a treatment center in Ireland in an effort to overcome his problems with alcohol.

In an exclusive interview with the Sunday Times of London, Fallon said that he had checked into the unnamed center on Dec. 30, thus ending weeks of speculation about the 37-year-old Irishman's whereabouts. Fallon told the Sunday Times that he would be undergoing treatment for thirty days.

Although he won the British riding title last year with 151 winners, Fallon said that drinking was "taking the enjoyment away and, for me, the important thing was to recognize this before it got too late."

He described a typical day as having "a few drinks after racing, a few in the house that night, and eventually it started to tell on me." He plans to return to riding with renewed vigor after his stay at the center.

Fallon's career has been dogged by controversy. He is currently suing News of the World for a report that tied him to illegal bookies in Hong Kong. In 1999 he was implicated in the breakup of the marriage of his employer Henry Cecil, for which he recieved an out of court settlement for unfair dismissal. In 1998 he won a libel case against the now defunct racing daily The Sporting Life, which claimed he had purposely stopped a horse named Top Cees in a race at Chester.