Feast for National Hunt fans with Paddy Mullins – The Great Stayer

Co Kilkenny trainer passed away four years ago, but left a rich legacy

Paddy Mullins was head of one of the most famous National Hunt families in this country.

Paddy Mullins was head of one of the most famous National Hunt families in this country.

 

For those who can’t wait for the feast of National Hunt racing to begin on St Stephen’s day, Setanta will air Paddy Mullins – The Great Stayer on Christmas night at 9pm, which is free to air for the documentary’s duration.

The Co Kilkenny trainer passed away, aged 91, in October 2010, but left behind a rich legacy. Mullins’ contribution to Irish racing was immense before he announced his retirement, aged 86, on February 26th, 2005 after a career that spanned 52 years.

Head of one of the most famous National Hunt families in this country, he is the only trainer to win the Champion Hurdle and Cheltenham Gold Cup with the same horse, a feat he achieved with the mare Dawn Run in 1984 and 1986.

In total, he saddled six Cheltenham Festival winners (Herring Gull, Counsel Cottage, Hazy Dawn and Macks Friendly were his other four).

A man of many talents, he saddled Hurry Harriet to win the Champion Stakes at Newmarket in 1973 (beating the brilliant French filly Allez France) as well as saddling four Irish Grand National winners (Luska 1981, Dim Wit 1972, Herring Gull 1968 and Vulpine 1967).

His achievements in 2003 (at the age of 84) were remarkable, with victories in the Irish Oaks (his first Classic success) with Vintage Tipple and the Galway Plate (his third following The Gooser and Boro Quarter) with Nearly A Moose. Other horses of note he handled were Grabel and Minorettes Girl. Grabel’s victory in the $750,000 International Hurdle at the Dueling Grounds in Kentucky (1990) rated right up there with the very best of any international training achievement.

Son Tom, who recorded his first Cheltenham Festival winner when Alderwood landed the 2012 County Hurdle, took over his father’s horses while other sons Willie (amateur) and Tony were talented jockeys before launching successful training careers.

Paddy Mullins – The Great Stayer also shows how Paddy’s outstanding achievements have filtered down to an incredible dynasty he left behind and who are now carrying on his all-conquering achievements.

The contributors include his wife Maureen and family, Jonjo O’ Neill, Frankie Dettori, Stan Mellor, Robert Hall, Noel Meade, Jim Bolger, John Oxx, Brian Kavanagh and Jacqueline O’Brien among others.

Funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, the hour-long programme was produced by Bankos Tales Productions.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.