Sunday 16 December 2018

Smullen joins the elite century club in Ireland

It was inevitable from a good few weeks back but last Sunday saw Pat Smullen bring up his first 100 winners in a season in Ireland.

A seventh Irish champion jockey crown is now also inevitable barring biblical intervention and it's fantastic to see such a milestone meaning a lot to a jockey of Smullen's experience.

The proud Offaly native fell just five short of the century in 2010 and in 2005 he won the championship with just 67 winners. By the time the current season ends in November he won't be a million miles away from doubling that. Smullen's loyalty to Dermot Weld, and vice-versa, goes back many years and would look set to continue for many more to come. While it's often questioned why Smullen's services aren't called upon often enough on big days for outside rides, his loyalty to riding at domestic meetings for Weld can usually be the answer to that.

It's a fair achievement to ride 100 winners in Ireland, though, and he joins an elite list to have done so. It's a testament to Smullen's ability and it looks like it's actually better he's getting.

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