It's now 33 years since the mighty Red Rum won his third Aintree Grand National in the most memorable of circumstances and ensured that the name of his trainer ‘Ginger‘ McCain would forever be associated with the world's greatest steeplechase, writes Elliot Slater.
Now, his son Donald is carving out a very successful training career and achieved another milestone recently when sending out the highly progressive Overturn to win the Galway Hurdle.
It's fair to say that although his father might have achieved mythical status in and beyond the racing world, McCain Jr has statistically enjoyed more wide ranging success since taking over the licence a few seasons ago. He has landed a number of famous victories at the Cheltenham Festival, and hit the big time when Overturn won the valuable Northumberland Plate at Newcastle at the end of June. Anyone who follows UK horse racing tips should keep an eye on him.
Donald McCain's victory in the “Pitman's Derby” made plenty of the Flat trainers sit up and take notice and once again confirmed what a fine trainer Ginger's son is in his own right. There is talk now of Overturn, a six-year-old Barathea gelding who appears to be improving rapidly under both codes, taking his chance at York later this month in the feature Ebor Handicap over a mile and six furlongs. This would see him following the same path as the hugely popular Sergeant Cecil trod a few seasons ago before going on to an emotional third big handicap victory when landing the Cesarewitch in the autumn of that campaign.
However, it wouldn't a big surprise if McCain resisted the temptation to run at the Knavesmire and give Overturn a break. The horse has barely had a break since September last year, and in this time he has triumphed at the Cheltenham Festival, won the Scottish Champion Hurdle, the big Newcastle feature and most recently, at Galway. He really is one of the best horse racing tips around.
Aintree racegoers will doubtless be hoping that Overturn appears at the feature April 2011 fixture, now being of a sufficiently high class to be a genuine contender for the prestigious Aintree Hurdle itself.