National hero Minella Times adds seasons to season for Henry de Bromhead | Horse racing news

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Minella Times (green and gold) launches the water jump under Rachael Blackmore


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COURSE GROSSICK

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Gold team: Henry de Bromhead and Rachael Blackmore after Minella Times won the Randox Grand National
COURSE GROSSICK

There had perhaps not been too many races on either side of the Irish Sea that would have suspected which powerhouse the De Bromhead shipyard in Knockeen, Co. Waterford was destined to become, when the father of Henry, Harry, made a few raids on Aintree in the 1980s with unpaid strangers.

The transformation from a farm with a few horses into a stable capable of achieving consistent Level 1 success over the past decade has been notable, especially as the team rebounded from losing the Potts family horses. – including the future Gold Cup hero. John sizing – in 2016.

However, even by the high standards Henry de Bromhead set for himself, the string of results achieved last month is far from historic, as he collected a lifetime of silverware in Cheltenham and Aintree arguably winning the four biggest UK prizes. the race has to offer.

The 47-year-old barely had time to comprehend the achievement of a Champion Hurdle-Champion Chase-Gold Cup hat-trick at Cheltenham before a Grand National 1-2 added to his season of wonder.


Randox Grand National 2021: full result and replay of the race


“It’s just great, a lot depends on Rachael and she was just great with him today,” said De Bromhead, who is rarely comfortable accepting praise for himself.

“She barely got off the rail, she was just great to him and it’s great to have her for the McManus family. I’m so happy. And Balko Des Flos was also brilliant. “

De Bromhead became only the second coach to saddle up 1-2 at the National, with Minella Times and Balko Des Flo matching the efforts of Fred Withington with Rubio and Mattie Macgregor in 1908.

He added: “The horse was just awesome and it’s great to have him for the McManus. Balko made a cracker and Chris’s Dream was going great, and unfortunately he just landed Daragh O’Keeffe there four or five. They all did very well. “

Never the type to count his chickens before they hatch, De Bromhead spent the break-in scouring Aintree looking for dangers.

Asked if he thinks Minella Times won the race by jumping last, he said: “It looked like that, but we all know how that can change. Any Second Now looked a bit unlucky with its passage and it started to come back to us, and Balko was staying as well.

“She had a good run all around, we were very lucky on our side and he opened fences for her. ”

John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos)

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Minella Times (green and gold) launches the water jump under Rachael Blackmore
John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos)

Knockeen horses receive intensive training and horses such as Sizing Europe and Special Tiara – the first two heroes of De Bromhead’s Champion Chase – have always been renowned for their jumping ability.

And while the fake Aintree fences built on his gallops may not have won a presentation award, nothing was left to chance before the trio’s assault on the National.

“We just put some pretty improvised stuff together, but it seems to have helped,” De Bromhead said. “But he’s such a brilliant jumper, he was so good all the time. “

Valseur Lido’s eighth place in 2018 was the culmination of five previous race attempts for the yard. But with Bromhead’s Henry in 2021, Minella Times may have been destined to eclipse those efforts for the man of the moment.

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