THRILLING FINALE IN RACE TO BE YORK TOP TRAINER
The impressive defence of the Coral Sprint Trophy by Gulliver for David O’Meara proved the decisive blow in a thrilling race to be the Charles Clinkard backed, Top Trainer at York Racecourse for 2020.
Over much of the season, the Skipton born, though Newmarket based, William Haggas, had seemed in control of the title race however the Upper Helmsley based operation set out their intentions when sending thirteen runners to the final two days of action on the Knavesmire, part of a sixty-strong contender list over the twelve days.
Victory for Muscika on Friday pulled them level with the Somerville Lodge team only to see a response when Ilaraab won the 2.35pm on Saturday to nudge the southern stable back one clear.
Thirty minutes later and Gulliver strode home at 20/1 to level things up. Both yards had further chances but neither Elvrika, the fortieth runner sent out by William haggas, nor Stonific could add to their tally.
Tied on eight winners apiece, it was left to countback of placed finishes to decide whether it would be the Champion of 2017 or 2018 that regained the bronze trophy. The statisticians reported a further tie with four second places apiece, meaning that it was courtesy of seven third places that David O’Meara secured his fourth Charles Clinkard Award.
In a near twist to the story, Ilaraab had been partnered to success by Danny Tudhope, the stable jockey for David O’Meara.The Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum thouroughbred was the ninth winner of this truncated season for the local rider.It saw Tudhope comfortably home to his third Living North Top Jockey Award, defending the title from last season.
Earlier in the season, the champion pair had teamed up to Pattern success when landIng the Group Three John Smith’s Silver Cup with Eagles By Day, carrying the colours of great Yorkshire racing supporter, Steve Parkin.