Given the tribal rivalry between Manchester United and Liverpool, Sir Alex Ferguson does not typically enjoy his time on Merseyside.
But the long-serving Red Devils boss certainly had platy to shout about at Aintree on Thursday as three of the racehorses he part owns all won to secure him an outstanding treble.
Each was a Grade One victory too, and so he walked away with around £170,000 in prize money – not bad for a day’s work – and landed a handsome 62/1 treble for punters wily enough to be on board.
|Protektorat||Manifesto Novices’ Chase||17/2||£42,285|
|Monmiral||Anniversary Juvenile Hurdle||10/11||£42,202.50|
|Clan Des Obeaux||Aintree Bowl||5/2||£84,963|
Sir Alex’s first winner of the day came via the prolific Harry and Dan Skelton partnership, with the former piloting Protektorat to victory in the SSS Super Alloys Manifesto Novices’ Chase. That was a handy 17/2 triumph for all involved.
Ferguson didn’t have to wait long for his next trip to the winners’ enclosure, as Monmiral – trained by Paul Nicholls and heavily backed into odds-on favouritism on the day – powered home in the Doom Bar Anniversary 4-Y-O Juvenile Hurdle.
And one of the 79-year-old’s most memorable days on Liverpool soil was confirmed when Clan Des Obeaux, arguably the finest horse in his ownership collection, dominated the Betway Bowl to beat a field including Tiger Roll by a handsome 26 lengths.
“I think that’s my first hat-trick in Liverpool – I don’t think they’ll be too pleased,” Ferguson said in tongue-in-cheek fashion.
“That’s the best day I’ve had in my time in racing. Harry rode a positive race and he was fantastic.
“You do get the same excitement when you win big races like that as it does get you very excited.”
The Manchester United legend may get a chance to cheer Clan Des Obeaux on again later in the month as he is scheduled to run in the bet365 Chase at Sandown.
Which Racehorses Does Sir Alex Ferguson Own?
Sir Alex owns or part owns a number of racehorses in training, and on Saturday he will cheer on Give Me A Copper in the Grand National.
Of those still in training, there’s no doubt that Clan Des Obeaux is his best horse – an absolute powerhouse of an animal who surprisingly hasn’t done better in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. However, that Betway Bowl triumph – allied to victories in the King George VI Chase (x2) and the Denman Chase – have more than made up for it.
Perhaps the most famous racehorse that Sir Alex Ferguson has ever had an ownership stake in is Rock of Gibraltar.
The Coolmore stallion won a catalogue of high profile races on the flat, including the 2,000 Guineas, the Sussex Stakes and the Prix du Moulin, but there was controversy when his career ended as an acrimonious fallout between Ferguson and JP Magnier saw their working relationship come to an end.
Sir Alex had his first winner way back in 1998 – he was still United manager at the time – courtesy of Queensland Star, named after the boat that his father had helped to build at the Govan shipyard.
Some people struggle to enjoy success in one profession, let alone two at the same time….