Hanagan aiming for another winning visit
He’s won two jockeys’ championships, Classics and numerous Group races but Paul Hanagan’s face lights up when he recalls some of his big winners at the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Festival down the years.
And the jockey, who celebrated his 39th birthday earlier this month, is hoping to add a few more successes over the three days of this year’s flagship Scottish Flat meeting.
He spoke to me last week en route to Chester races and said: “I’ve more or less ridden at the Gold Cup Festival, or Western Meeting as it was, since I was an apprentice 20 years ago.
“I missed the few years I was retained by Hamdan Al Maktoum but I’ve been here the last couple of years again and aim to have a good book of mounts over the three days.”
Paul rides for a variety of trainers, with Richard Fahey still his main source of mounts, and he said: “I haven’t finalised what I’m riding but Richard’s two- year- olds are in great form at the moment. So look out for what he runs in the juvenile races.”
A couple of horses that Paul is definitely booked to ride that are worth noting are Eva Maria in the British Stallion Studs Scottish Premier Series EBF Fillies’ Handicap and Irreverent in the William Hill Foundation Uniting Against Dementia Handicap.
The latter won at the track in June on the day Paul rode a treble and met his hero, Liverpool and Scotland player Andy Robertson.
He said: ” I met Andy and his family and mentioned a few of my rides. I think they backed them and won a few w bob.”