Mac still in top form
Taghmon jockey to the fore in Britain
It has been a quiet enough week for Wexford connections on the racing scene, though Pat McDonald from Taghmon has kept up his consistent run with three more winners on the all-weather in Britain.
He is working relentlessly at the bread and butter aspects of the job.
On Saturday he was at Lingfield for four rides and a second on Medici Banchiere (10/1) for Karl Burke was all he had to show.
He called in at Wolverhampton for a single spin on the way home to North Yorkshire but had to accept second on that one too.
He scored a double at Newcastle on Friday night on Tough Remedy (3/1) for Keith Dalgleish and Wiff Waff (4/5f), and had a winner at the same venue on Thursday with Theglasgowwarrior (8/11f) for Jim Goldie.
Daryl Jacob and Tom O'Brien were in action at the big televised meeting at Kempton on Saturday, but a second in the handicap chase by Jacob on Ballykan (5/1) was the best outcome.
He had an armchair ride at Huntingdon on Friday when winning by ten lengths on Nicky Henderson's Terrefort (6/4f) in a novice chase.
Jacob was due to ride Polidam for Willie Mullins and retained owner, Simon Munir, in the €100,000 Dan Moore Memorial handicap chase at Fairyhouse on Sunday but the horse was pulled out.
Jimmy Quinn from New Ross has joined Enniscorthy's Pat Dobbs on the United Arab Emirates circuit which is gearing up for the incredibly lucrative Meydan carnival which goes on for a month and concludes with the multi-million Euro World Cup day.
At Punchestown on Saturday the best Wexford showing was a good third by Liz Doyle's Without Limites (9/1) in the Red Mills Amateur National.
There were no Wexford winners at Fairyhouse on Sunday but local connections were involved in two terrific finishes.
The Paul Nolan-trained Fitzhenry (4/1), owned by J.P. McManus and ridden by Barry Geraghty, fought his heart out but had to give way by a head to Dromore (3/1f) in a handicap hurdle.
Jamie Codd arrived from the point-to-point at Tinahely to ride Gordon Elliott's Getaway John (5/2) in the concluding bumper and just failed by a head in a terrific scrap with old rival, Patrick Mullins, on Tornado Flyer (1/1f).
Off the track, the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders' Association (I.T.B.A.), the representative body for 6,777 breeders, will host an EXPO for the thoroughbred industry on Friday and Saturday, January 26 and 27, in Goffs Sales Complex, Co. Kildare, in partnership with Connolly's Red Mills. There is sure to be a big Wexford interest as the county is among the top four producers of foals in the country.
The Irish racing and breeding industry is particularly important to the rural economy and communities.
Wexford is home to a large number of thoroughbred breeders with 581 of them owning 1,059 mares and producing 661 foals in 2016, according to I.T.B.A. figures.
In addition to these breeding operations there are a number of very successful trainers linked to the county, including world renowned Aidan O'Brien and Jim Bolger.
There are many other ancillary activities that provide a good deal of employment throughout the county such as veterinary practices, Co-Op supply stores, horse transport companies, farriers, livery yards etc.
The Expo is essentially a trade fair for the bloodstock industry and will have nearly 90 exhibitors.
All third level equine colleges will be represented so it is a great opportunity for any young person looking to work in the industry to pick up information on courses.
There will also be an extensive programme of events, including a Dragons Den type business competition, educational presentations and an interactive forum mapping a blueprint for the industry's future.
This free event is open to the public and is expected to attract over 3,500 people over the two days.
I.T.B.A. C.E.O. Shane O'Dwyer said: 'EXPO '18 will showcase the importance and reach of this indigenous industry. I encourage anybody with an interest in the bloodstock industry to attend this free event.'