He helped out Def Leppard in August 1986 and played alongside Rick Allen who had lost his left arm in a car accident in December 1984. However, during Def Leppard's warm-up mini tour of Ireland, Rich missed a gig, and the rest of the band realised Allen could drum alone.
Rich played with Stretch, Judie Tzuke and the Climax Blues Band prior to joining Status Quo, where in late 1985 he replaced Pete Kircher on drums. In April 2000, Rich announced his intention to leave Status Quo after 15 years in the group, as he was tired of touring and wanted to spend more time with his family. He was replaced on drums by Matt Letley.
During his time with Status Quo, Rich used Paiste cymbals and Premier drums, with a 22" Tama bass drum. Up until the Under the Influence tour in 1999, Rich had his cymbals free floating from a steel frame, which fans noted as making him look like he was 'drumming in a cage'.
After leaving Status Quo, he began touring schools across the UK giving school children lessons on percussion, which he continues to do today. Rich also is drumming for 'Stealer', a tribute band to Free.