Following the incredible drama and excitement of this year’s Cheltenham Festival the weekend’s action proceeded to throw up even more eye-catching headlines.
The retirement of Gold Cup and dual King George winner Long Run has made the front of today’s Racing Post and rightly so given the veterans’ achievements.
Meanwhile, the start of the Irish Flat season also produced a few interesting footnotes.
Here’s a rundown of the big stories…
Waley-Cohen ban overshadows Long Run’s final show
Jockey Sam Waley-Cohen was left understandably upset yesterday after being handed a seven-day ban by stewards at Carlisle.
The amateur jockey could only guide legendary jumps horse Long Run to a fifth-place finish in a hunter chase at the Cumbria track.
But having been caught for third he was adjudged to have prematurely eased up on his mount, a decision he plans to appeal.
The incident overshadowed what should’ve been a time for dewy-eyed reflection with Long Run subsequently retired after the race.
Aidan O’Brien puts top-notch string through their paces
Sunday’s meeting at the Curragh marked the start of the Irish Flat season and with that in mind it was inevitable that the Master of Ballydoyle would be keeping a close eye on proceedings.
Aidan O’Brien sent out 50 horses to exercise at the track, including the heavy favourite for the Qipco 2000 Guineas, Air Force Blue.
Having watched on, O’Brien confirmed his charge’s intended destination.
He told the Racing Post: “It’s six weeks to the Guineas and he’ll be going straight to Newmarket. He’s done well over the winter and we’re very happy with where we are with him at this stage.”
Mister Trader proves to be an upsetter
This year’s Irish Flat action kicked-off in sensational style with 25/1 shot Mister Trader taking the spoils in the card’s opener.
The 5f contest is usually a good pointer for the remainder of the season and both trainer Darren Bunyan and jockey Leigh Roche will have been delighted with the performance.
He finished fifth onboard the Michael O’Callaghan-trained Terrific Feeling in the aforementioned contest.
Meanwhile, Paul Deegan enjoyed a one-two in the Irish Lincolnshire with Sruthan and Aussie Valentine and Queen Blossom successfully took on the track’s stiff mile to finish ahead of Godolphin fancy Devonshire in the card’s Group race and in doing so outlined her Irish Oaks credentials.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.