Having fallen a little behind, we now have plenty of winners to catch up on, starting with The Ferbane Man. Having won just one of his 14 starts in Irish points, he had scored three times for us in his first nine outings, but the winning margins were 1/2L, a neck and a head for those wins and it is fair to say he wasn’t always the most resolute in a finish!
The last of his four wins for us came on this day back in 2011 under AP McCoy, winning by a nose and a short-head in a three-way finish (pictured) at the end of three miles, two furlongs and 162 yards, fought out by three jockeys who between them won the 2009 (Liam Treadwell), 2010 (AP) and 2012 (Daryl Jacob) Nationals!
Our other 21st April winner came courtesy of Explained in 2014, winning a five-runner chase at Market Rasen in the hands of Michael Byrne for owners Nigel Churton and Caroline Wilson. Two out of his previous three successes had also come in April, while he also took a notable scalp when winning his novice hurdle at Folkestone in November 2012, the beaten 1-4 favourite that day being the 2014 Irish National winner Shutthefrontdoor.
Our 19th April winners include Bucking The Trend, who was a huge favourite of ours. A 20-length winner on his debut in a point at Lower Machen, he had won twice over hurdles but improved when sent chasing, scoring at Ludlow on 19th April 2016 under Alan Johns (5). Sticking to the National theme which seems to be dominating this blog, his next run after this Ludlow win came when runner-up at Aintree the following month, nine lengths behind Al Co, who had won the Scottish National two years earlier! Bucky was such a star for his owners The Marinades and we await with interest to see what the progeny of his sister Tara Mac is like in due course!
So Now was our first 18th April winner, back in 2009, while another old favourite Quo Video was successful the following year, scoring at Wincanton under Richie Killoran (who will feature in tomorrow’s Where are they now’!) for owners the Folly Road Racing Partners (1996), headed up by Derek Shinton.
It’s also the day we had one of those things that we don’t like to talk about; a second at Cheltenham, with Destroyer Deployed just touched off in the 3m handicap hurdle – a race that Be Bop Boru also finished runner-up in the following year!