To better understand the City of San Fernando, one must take into consideration the span of 234 years of our development, 172 years as a municipality and now 29 years a City.
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Mullins, Walsh a winning tag team
Willie Mullins nigh on dominates the Irish racing scene and with stable jockey, Ruby Walsh, appears to win every important race, often finishing second with other runners. Do serious-minded Irish punters actually profit by just putting down their money and picking it up (with profit!) when they pass the post?
Although the strike rate of this phenomenally successful Emerald Isle trainer is way above 50 per cent the starting prices are usually prohibitive and one actually makes a profit by laying them, in the long run!
Backing short-priced winners is probably good for confidence, 1/2, 4/7, 4/6 and sometimes even money favourites carry “Uncle” Ruby and he knows winning enclosures like the back of his hand. The conveyances, off the Mullins’ assembly line(s), are like machines but, do you realise, that if just two out of ten fail then it’s like playing snakes and ladders because you are back where you started.
In a few weeks, Willie intends replicating his tremendously successful 2015 Cheltenham Festival mission with another battalion. There’s actually talk, speculation, given the colossal prize-money on offer throughout four fabulous days in March, that Mullins could end up champion trainer in England!
What an incredible prospect, imagine the excitement of watching these magnificent creatures take on our very best on Prestbury Park, home of National Hunt racing, against a background setting that is breathtaking to say the least, with rolling hills as far as the eye can see from a superbly-cited grandstand.
My first venture to the course was in 1963 when Arkle stormed up the hill and began a domination that will never be surpassed; Himself was the finest thoroughbred I’d ever seen, jumps or flat, until Frankel bestrode the grade one racecourses three years ago with fourteen victories, unbeaten he was!
The time-handicap figures for both were absolutely outstanding, they were in a different league. Watching top class racing is so exciting, nerve-racking, and the build up to the greatest show on earth is now under way. February is the month of trials and March the month of destiny.
I’ll do my best to keep you fully informed and supply a clutch of good-priced winners, not shorties! Today, there are three meetings, Leicester and Wetherby (NH) while Southwell stages a six-race fibresand programme on which Miss Lillie is a strong chance in an aged handicap over a mile.
Miss Lillie comes best-in judged on recent effort on the deep stuff and mount of consistent, reliable, Robert Winston. I’m keen to move part of our operation to jumping but, as previously mentioned, heavy ground is the case everywhere and guessing is pointless, not to mention costly.
Over the same course and distance Sea Of Uncertainty has an obvious opportunity in the three-year-old handicap with Tony Rawlinson claiming a vital 3lbs apprentice allowance.