Many congratulations to Star Sports brand ambassador DAVY RUSSELL who won back to back Randox Health Grand Nationals aboard the legend that is TIGER ROLL at Aintree on Saturday.
Tiger Roll became the first horse since Red Rum in the 1970’s to win back to back Nationals and was sent off the 4/1 favourite.
After the win, an emotional Davy said: “I can’t believe it. That’s the man there (gesturing to Gordon Elliott). He’s the man in charge and has done a great job, along with Karen and Keith, Michael and Anita, and Eddie. At my age now to be winning two Grand Nationals……
“He’s one hell of a horse. The O’Learys have been so good to me throughout my career, and Gordon too. What can I say.
“Tiger Roll is just an amazing hose. He travelled really well throughout the race. I was a little bit afraid the blinkers had lit him up a bit too much but Gordon knew what he was doing. I don’t think there’s been a horse winning blinkers in a long time, but he was so good.
“He gave a couple of stumbles at the back of a few fences but every time he gave a stumble he went and jumped the next one really well. He’d keep you on your toes the whole time.
“For some reason he met a lot of fences closer than normal, but he had an awful lot of respect for them. I feel the cross-country races really crowned him, as they’ve taught him how to use his feet a little bit better. He used to be a bit of a bulldozer in his early days but knows now that it’s a lot easier not to bulldoze them.
“I was a little bit worried when we were walking around at the start as he got a little bit anti, but Denis O’Regan on another horse of Gigginstown guided him back to the bunch and I knew once he was in the bunch he was happy.
“When he went to the front he was still quite strong on the bridle but he’s a bit of a show off. I’d been a bit worried going round that he was doing a little bit too much, so I was trying to cool myself down and to cool him down too, which helped him a little bit. I was just afraid he wouldn’t get a puncture if you know what I mean.”
Writing on his Star Sports exclusive blog on Friday ahead of the big race (CLICK HERE), Davy said: “I need luck on my side and what happened last year is irrelevant in my mind.
When I retire, I can look back on last year and reminisce, but while I’m still riding it’s about living in the moment and I just have to concentrate on the job in hand.”
DON’T MISS DAVY’S WEEKLY BLOGS HERE AT STAR SPORTS WITH FURTHER GRAND NATIONAL REACTION TO FOLLOW
If you have a question for Davy drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll try and include in the next blog…