McDonald's hard work paying off cross channel
In Britain, it was another pretty good week for Pat McDonald from Taghmon who had four winners and still occupies fourth place in the British riders' championship on 62.
McDonald got off to a good start on Monday at Ayr when he got up in the shadow of the post to win by a head on Cheeni (11/2) for Jim Goldie, who also trained the second, Goinodaethat (10/1).
He kept up the good work with a double at Nottingham on Tuesday evening - on May Remain (2/1) for Paul Cole in a five-furlong sprint, and Al Nafoorah (11/4) for Ed Dunlop.
He moved on to Catterick on Wednesday and struck in the seven-furlong handicap on Go Now Go Now (7/2), getting up by a neck for Mark Johnston, but then the steam ran out of his week somewhat and despite lots of rides over the weekend he had to be content with a few places.
On Friday, he had a couple of afternoon rides at Thirsk and then went to York for three more in the evening. A third for Karl Burke on Twizzell (8/1) was all he had to show for it but at least these are all quite close together and only involved about one hundred miles on the road.
He had a blank day at York on Saturday and went to Pontefract for three rides on Sunday and had two second places, on Kalagia (5/2) and Correggio (10/1).
McDonald has been having a good season but all this just illustrates once again what hard work it is; not a life for the faint-hearted, especially if you add in six o'clock starts in the morning to ride out horses. His 62 winners so far this season have come from 467 rides.
On Friday, Pat Dobbs (Enniscorthy) was on the road. He travelled one hundred miles from the Richard Hannon stables for one ride at Ascot in the afternoon without success and then went over one hundred miles back to Newmarket for a couple that evening and had to be content with a second on Di Fede (9/1) for Ralph Beckett. Jimmy Quinn (New Ross) had a single ride at Thirsk and was third on Fleeting Freedom (9/2).