bows out at the Curragh
will not garner the headlines accorded to recently-retired jockeys Ruby Walsh
and Pat Smullen but that exalted duo would be among the first to wish Robert
‘Nuggy’ Rusk best wishes as he brings 45 years as a jockeys’ valet to a
conclusion this evening at the Curragh.
native of Kildare town, where he still lives, Nuggy has been tending to the
needs of jockeys like Walsh and Smullen most of his life, ensuring they have
all the necessary clean tack and gear ready to go as they come in from one race
and make the turnaround for another.
are among the unsung heroes of the racing world and jockeys rely on them to
make sure their day runs smoothly between races.
has tended to many of the greats of Irish and international racing, from Lester
Piggott to Willie Shoemaker to Mick Kinane to the aforementioned Walsh and
Smullen, and even looked after Aidan O’Brien during the Ballydoyle maestro’s
days riding in point-to-points.
66, he brings the curtain down on a wonderful period of service and it is
fitting that he says goodbye in the plush new Curragh weigh room.
retirement Nuggy, and don’t be a stranger.
Murphy is a trainer you always take seriously. He has sold some good horses to
keep the business on a sound footing but has illustrated time and again his
ability to have his troops ready, whether that is to impress potential future
owners, or win at a higher level.
Only Mine, Swamp Fox, Ask Jack and Ardbrae Lady are just some of those who have
benefited from the Fethard conditioner’s tutelage and swooped off with the
spoils on a big day.
string has begun firing of late, with Insignia Of Rank victorious in a premier
handicap at the Curragh and Fit For Function claiming the spoils at Gowran Park
Of Rank returns to HQ this evening, stepping up in class to take in the Listed
TRI Equestrian Silver Stakes (7.45). On ratings, the four-year-old has a bit to
find to get in the frame but having won over course and distance a fortnight
ago and with Murphy not one to waste darts at stakes contests, he cannot be
has two runners at Navan tomorrow. Ballylinch Stud-bred and –owned Kodiqueen is
aimed at the Arkle Bar Handicap (3.25). The three-year-old filly has the right
blood, by Kodiac out of Dubawi mare Majestic Dubawi, and though failing to land
a blow in three maidens, having not run as a juvenile, is interesting now on
looks a potentially talented individual with a very strong chance in the Irish
Stallion Farms EBF Fillies’ Maiden (4.35). Like Kodiqueen, Istoria is owned by
her breeder (Paget Bloodstock), is regally-bred (by Camelot out of Storm Cat
broodmare Brooklyn’s Storm) and was shown the necessary patience by her
her first run came in a three-year-old maiden at Cork a month ago and she made
a significant impression staying on to be third, having met a little trouble in
running. Only two horses in behind have been to the track since and one of
those was placed, but with Paddy Twomey and Jessica Harrington providing the
first two, and Aidan O’Brien the fourth, it was likely to be a good maiden.
Camphor reopposes but the Harrington charge was having her second run when
one-and-a-half lengths ahead of Istoria, who will surely have a better idea
about her job now. Dermot Weld’s Kiss For A Jewel is a major threat too in a